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Super Robot Wars 30 Proves Console Localization Works

Courtesy of Bandai Namco Entertainment

Super Robot Wars 30

Developer: B.B. Studio
Release Date: October 28, 2021
Available as: Digital and Physical (Asia Only)

Super Robot Wars 30 Celebrates Its 30th Anniversary

Super Robot Wars, known colloquially as Super Robot Taisen, had its humble beginnings on the Game Boy in 1991, combining mecha anime and robotic combat. Banpresto was the developer of the SRW series beginning with the first up until its merge into B.B. Studio. It's impressive to look at Super Robot Wars 30, comparing it to its origins consisting of Gundam, Mazinger, and Getter Robo. With each new addition added more robots, franchises, and original characters. Eventually, its popularity would extend across many platforms and generations. It would be easier to list the consoles that Super Robot Wars wasn't on than list every major appearance.

Despite its incredible success and popularity in Japan, the game was rarely mentioned elsewhere due to its strict exclusivity. Many had assumed that Super Robot Wars was never seen outside of Japan due to licensing issues. Aside from Bandai and Banpresto's licenses, other outside licenses loaned their IPs. These would include CLAMP, Sunrise, and Toei among others. As with most exclusive titles, this didn't stop the fandom from getting involved in Super Robot Wars. Fan translations, English guides, and word of mouth were what promoted sales outside of Japan. Super Robot Wars 30 made history by releasing in the West on Steam, but console players were left behind once again.

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Super Robot Wars 30 - Nintendo Switch Direct Capture

Localization And Workarounds Gives SRW Fans A Fighting Chance

While Super Robot Wars 30 marked the first time that the SRW series made its way to the States, the console versions give SRW fans a fighting chance. Beginning with 2016's The Moon Dwellers, Bandai Namco would release its games with English subtitles in Asian markets. SRW 30 continues this trend with the PS4 and Switch versions. This means that players who import Super Robot Wars 30 can still enjoy the game as much as their PC friends. One glaring elephant in the room is those who wish to own the game digitally. Even worse, those who wish to use the game's DLC.

Early purchase and preorder copies of Super Robot Wars 30 include a number of DLC codes, giving players an early edge and exclusive units. The developers had gone on record to say that players will not be able to purchase the pre-order bonuses. These make the exclusive content a relic of sorts, but most importantly, it opens up another quest. How are players able to redeem the DLC codes? Players who try to redeem the codes via the eshop will find their endeavors fruitless. This is because chances are their eshop region doesn't match Super Robot Wars 30's region.

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Super Robot Wars 30 - Nintendo Switch Direct Capture

In order to redeem the DLC included in physical copies of SRW 30, players will need to have a Japanese eShop (or PSN for PS4 players) account. The same goes for players who wish to own the game digitally. Fortunately, the culture of console gameplay has changed for the better due to consoles being region-free. Gone are the days where players had to install modchips in order to play Japanese games on a US console.

Super Robot Wars 30 Is A Mecha Fan-Fiction And Love Letter

The relative ease of access due to the rise of digital and region-free gameplay plus an official English translation introduces a wave of new players to Super Robot Wars. Fans of mecha anime will almost certainly enjoy SRW as countless references are made. In the opening cutscenes, references to Code Geass, V Gundam, Mazinger Z, and other anime are made. Original characters located in Anytown, Japan are also introduced, serving as segues for prominent figures. Battles are held in space as the protagonist does battles alongside famous pilots and villains. Bandai Namco's fanservice is paramount, which savvy players will instantly compare to games like Project X Zone.

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Super Robot Wars 30 - Nintendo Switch Direct Capture

Super Robot Wars 30's gameplay is simplistic and easy to grasp, meshing well with the copious amount of fanservice offered. Players move units while also taking support actions. Within range, the unit can choose to attack and an animation plays out, with the opposing unit launching a counterattack. The visuals and graphics are impressive, combining 2D anime-style attack cut-ins with mild 3D environments. Once again, the visual appearance brings me back to the Project X Zone series, which offered a similar aesthetic with its sprites.

Even For First Time Players, SRW 30 Is A Game All Should Try

The story is a "chosen one must save the galaxy" cliche, which isn't a bad thing as the abundance of characters tells their own stories. Allies from various mecha anime series team up to fight a common foe. Players can have a team of units that can be souped up to destroy the opposition. A plethora of music, gallery images, and biographies give players a lot of incentives. Even with the very first mission serving as the game's tutorial/prologue, SRW 30 left a good impression.

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Super Robot Wars 30 - Nintendo Switch Direct Capture

Super Robot Wars 30 is the ultimate experience for both new and old fans alike. Players who are used to NIS titles like Phantom Brave and Soul Nomad will understand the game mechanics quickly. Those who are new to the genre can change the difficulty while reading an in-depth tutorial guide. While console players will need to find a way around a barbed wired fence, its general ease of access allows anyone to enjoy SRW 30 no matter the platform.

Super Robot Wars 30 is available on the PC, PS4, and Switch.

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