Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Albert Lichi 07.07.2018

Review for Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo on Nintendo Switch

The very idea of largescale mechs or mobile suits is perfect for videogames. The very core of a giant robot in itself would offer tons of versatility for gameplay that could fit in all genres. From the Front Mission tactical RPG series, to the blistering-paced action of the Zone of the Enders releases, and even the methodical realistic simulation of Mechwarrior, there really is no limit to how mechs can be represented in a videogame. Is Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo on Switch more than meets the eye, or does it belong in the scrap heap?

There is just no getting around it, Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo is a boring and extremely repetitive game. This is the kind of soulless repetition that feels like work. The story is utterly inconsequential to all the action while playing; all reduced to static portraits with text boxes, written so blandly and dry. The premise itself could have been interesting since it was about post-World War IV sentient weapons taking over. It will take a ton of patience to extract any intrigue out of all the text and dialogue from Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo. Storytelling and narrative does not have to be the focus of any game, especially one where the main enjoyment would come from large bi-pedal machines fighting. That is only in theory if the action in itself was any good.

Screenshot for Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo on Nintendo Switch

The real nightmare begins after about an hour of its basic shoot 'em and loot 'em gameplay. It does not take long, but all of the game's cards are shown and then it becomes increasingly difficult to press on. The structure never deviates from going from the mission select/upgrade menu to go-and-do-X, upgrade, and repeat. After a while, it feels like upgrading is busy work since it is required to keep up with the ever increasingly harder enemies. This wouldn't be so bad if there was more to the upgrading where different kinds of builds were possible and the gameplay was more than just the basic overhead shooting and dodging. There is nothing to explore in the ruins of Tokyo, either; the missions will lock out other zones and there is no emergence. It is Diablo done wrong.

Things might have been compelling if players had to survive out there in the Tokyo rubble, in a non-linear and open-ended map. Having to scrounge for parts and fulfilling the objectives organically instead of off a menu would have made things flow a bit better. The combat is another animal altogether that is lacking since it barely expands beyond a few special weapons. Expect a very basic overhead action game that involves shooting, dodge-boosting, and some melee attacks. This could be re-skinned to feature anything but mechas and the gameplay still would be untouched since it barely matters. What is present is just serviceable and would still be extremely basic even if it was released back when the SEGA Dreamcast was considered novel. Bosses can have enormous HP pools, which will make battles drag for an eternity and they are never particularly challenging, just tedious. It becomes an endless loop of cheap shots against the enemy while they are stuck in their animation, and then running around them waiting for them to fall for the same trick again.

Screenshot for Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

4/10
Rated 4 out of 10

Subpar

Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo might be the most boring mech game of all time. It is definitely the dullest action RPG on Switch... if it can be called that. It is one of those kinds of titles that fade from memory because it has nothing really going for it. The visuals are understandably low-fi since it was originally designed for mobile devices like the PS Vita and phones, but that is no excuse for the gameplay to be soul-crushingly monotonous. There are more enjoyable mech games made on much older hardware that still hold up, like Gun Hazard or Metal Warriors, which were made with Super Nintendo specs. It does not take much to realise an enjoyable mecha game, just some imagination. Damascus Gear Operation Tokyo, sadly, copies the most trite aspects of Diablo without understanding what the appeal was.

Developer

Arc System Works

Publisher

Arc System Works

Genre

Turn Based RPG

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  4/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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