Ever heard someone say, "Be careful what you ask for, you just might get it?" I fear that is exactly how I would describe the previewable disc I received for Armored Core: Last Raven
. I am always excited about being able to preview games before their release - it's a perk of being a game reviewer. I also am a big fan of the Armored Core
series. What I received, however, just happens to be a Japanese Debug copy of the game. The programmer side of me is excited at the ability to flip various debug settings on and off and play around with the graphics settings and the enemy A.I. settings, but the problem is that I can't simply play the game
with this demo. I can play a level, but only if I specify what Map and Scenario to use. The problem here is that I have no way of knowing what Scenario or Map is used on any given level. I also can't seem to make heads or tails of the Japanese voice-overs (despite the Japanese sub-titles). This has led to me finishing a level and then wondering if I succeeded or failed the mission. It's kind of hard to tell, since either way I'm headed back to the debug menu and not to the next mission.
One thing that is touted as a new feature in Armored Core: The Last Raven is ""Human Interaction" - that is, the introduction of people onto the battlefield. From what I was actually able to play, I really only saw a couple handful of people scurry into buildings at the beginning of a mission. I then stepped on the building, ending the "human menace". There may be more troublesome humans in the game, but none that I've yet to encounter.
Another of Last Raven's features is said to be an in-depth storyline with multiple battle modes... 6 Possible Endings, depending upon the choices you make. I was unable to work through the storyline with this debug, unfortunately.