Front Mission Evolves... Into Third-Person Shooting

Posted by Brad (3215 posts) -
Perhaps not what you were expecting...
When I heard Square Enix was showing a long-awaited new installment in its old Front Mission series of giant robot-based strategy games here at E3, I expected to see exactly that same style of turn-based gameplay with a much prettier coat of paint. Boy was I wrong.

The new game, Front Mission Evolved, isn't a strategy game; it's a third-person shooter. The game is being co-developed by the original Front Mission team at Square Enix, and Orange County-based Double Helix for release on PS3, Xbox 360, and PC. Square is focusing on the story and character design, while Double Helix is working out the action, which a rep for the developer likened to games like Call of Duty in terms of big, cinematic presentation.

Neither company was ready to talk much in the way of specifics nor show the game itself at E3, but they did say it will feature the same factions, locations, and wanzers (the series' name for its big combat robots) that fans are used to. Ditto the wanzer customization, which is said to feature all the same options and techniques for building a better battle robot that the old strategy games did. Aside from the campaign, there will be a significant online multiplayer mode with a heavy emphasis on team-based modes. There will also be some kind of persistent experience system that allows you to grow your character from match to match.

Square Enix and Double Helix will be taking the wraps off Front Mission Evolved in stages later this year, first at the GamesCon in Germany and then at Tokyo Game Show. I'm curious to see how it shapes up as an action game--but as someone who never got into the old strategy versions of Front Mission, I'm even more curious to see how diehard fans of the series take the transition. How do you feel about it?
#1 Posted by Brad (3215 posts) -
Perhaps not what you were expecting...
When I heard Square Enix was showing a long-awaited new installment in its old Front Mission series of giant robot-based strategy games here at E3, I expected to see exactly that same style of turn-based gameplay with a much prettier coat of paint. Boy was I wrong.

The new game, Front Mission Evolved, isn't a strategy game; it's a third-person shooter. The game is being co-developed by the original Front Mission team at Square Enix, and Orange County-based Double Helix for release on PS3, Xbox 360, and PC. Square is focusing on the story and character design, while Double Helix is working out the action, which a rep for the developer likened to games like Call of Duty in terms of big, cinematic presentation.

Neither company was ready to talk much in the way of specifics nor show the game itself at E3, but they did say it will feature the same factions, locations, and wanzers (the series' name for its big combat robots) that fans are used to. Ditto the wanzer customization, which is said to feature all the same options and techniques for building a better battle robot that the old strategy games did. Aside from the campaign, there will be a significant online multiplayer mode with a heavy emphasis on team-based modes. There will also be some kind of persistent experience system that allows you to grow your character from match to match.

Square Enix and Double Helix will be taking the wraps off Front Mission Evolved in stages later this year, first at the GamesCon in Germany and then at Tokyo Game Show. I'm curious to see how it shapes up as an action game--but as someone who never got into the old strategy versions of Front Mission, I'm even more curious to see how diehard fans of the series take the transition. How do you feel about it?
#2 Edited by NotSoSneakyGuy (73 posts) -

Hooray for Wanzers? I don't even remember when the last Front Mission came out in the U.S....

#3 Edited by Al3xand3r (7574 posts) -

Have they done away with any and all strategy? Maybe you at least get some squad mates to command in all full metal armor rainbow six style?

O well, PC version, swell! I'm sad for the strategy loss but I'm confident they will do something unique with it.

Creating The Crystal Bearers has restored my faith in Square-Enix. Keep it up!

#4 Posted by Bigandtasty (3203 posts) -

Woah, Front Mission. Now there's a name I never thought would be seen again.

#5 Posted by xxNBxx (978 posts) -

personaly I would have liked a strategy game more.  I wonder how they will work in the skills that made Front mission such a fun game.  I can see how speed and guild might work but what about switch and double?

#6 Posted by unangbangkay (146 posts) -

I'm still a bit miffed that they never brought Front Mission 5 across the pond, but any Front Mission is better than no Front Mission.

#7 Posted by Lazyaza (2196 posts) -

Good mech games are so rare it drives me nuts and I missed out on playing Front Mission 4 and 5, I want this game so bad it hurts. 
I played the hell out of Front Mission 3, am I annoyed about the genre change? hell no. I will take whatever I can get when it comes to mech games.

#8 Posted by Ket87 (441 posts) -

Cool, Front Mission 3 was the only FM game I played and it was pretty sweet. And I was a long time Armored Core fan so I'm looking forward to Evolved as this seems more of where I wanted to see that franchise going.

#9 Posted by DragoonKain1687 (702 posts) -

Why not let Armored Core do what they do best and Front Mission do what they do best?? Was there any need to bastardize such a great mecha franchise???

#10 Posted by GozerTC (458 posts) -

No!  I'm with DragoonKain, we have Armored Core for 3rd person giant robot fighting.  Front mission is a strategy franchise, and I was hoping for a  little tactical combat not another 3rd person game.  *Sigh* 

#11 Posted by andrewsimpson69 (8 posts) -

I aggree with GozerTC. no way they can take that market from armored core.

#12 Posted by Lilarcor (213 posts) -

Sounds interesting, but I am a little sad that they seem to be moving Front Mission away from its strategy roots. I really liked 3 and 4, and wish that Squeenix had brought 5 over to the US because apparently it was really great. Still, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. I'm sure they're not calling this Front Mission 6 because if it doesn't work out they'll either try something else or go back to the original Front Mission style.

#13 Posted by SoulEdgeSlayer (534 posts) -

...anyone else kinda upset about this?  I have fond memories of Front Mission 3, and this is actually one of my favorite SRPG series.  Not enough great SRPG's are made anymore, which is a bummer.

That being said, I was a pretty hardcore fan of Armored Core 2 and 3, and have never touched one since.  Perhaps this will revitalize my interest in the giant mech genre?

#14 Posted by LaszloKovacs (1152 posts) -

What? Front Mission was the only grid-based tactics series I ever really liked. Why turn that into yet another mech shootan gaem that will undoubtedly be worse than the original format?

#15 Posted by The_Ish (481 posts) -
@unangbangkay said:
" I'm still a bit miffed that they never brought Front Mission 5 across the pond, but any Front Mission is better than no Front Mission. "
There's a 5?!

*Checks*

Holy shit!

#16 Posted by DukeTogo (1504 posts) -

Armored Snore has sucked since the PSone days.  It's always been too slow and never really got the multiplayer down the way a game like that should have.  Front Mission hasn't really been good since the incredible FM3, and changing the style of game could put it back on the map.

I heard once that it was going to be something like Valkyria Chronicles in execution, sort of a mesh of FM and AC, that could work quite well.  I really like games like FM Gun Hazard, Target Earth, and the Leynos games.  There hasn't been a great action robot game in while that wasn't some simmy AC or crappy Gundam title.  I think the last good mech game was Mechassault, and that's fucking old.

#17 Posted by Serker (521 posts) -

one of the biggest problems with armored core is the graphics and lack of story soooooo... im going to buy this.

#18 Edited by McPaper (255 posts) -

I would consider myself a long time fan of the series and I would just like to add that the second Front Mission game took a different approach making the game a side scrolling shooter of sorts, so Front Mission was not always a top down turn based strat. I cant say this type of gameplay impressed me and kept my interest and I was more than happy to return to the grid based strat rpg of the masterpiece that was Front Mission 3 and to a lesser extent 4.

Although I was very much addicted to the strategy / turn-based stuff of Front Mission of old, I also felt it lacked a level of fluidness in the story telling and action in the gameplay that I feel Front Mission Evolved can possibly bring about. This is my most followed game at the moment dispite this e3 madness.

They mention that the same level of customizability will be kept in this game, I just hope they can deliver on it, in that the customizability also serves the same level of purpose in the previous games. If they can match that and add some action which isnt just dumb this should be awesome for Front Mission fans and people alien to the series.

Plus my dream game has always involved online and mechs, I some what doubt this can match the expectations but it is certainly worth an eye out and shouldnt be shunned by hardcore FM fans.

#19 Posted by Nasar7 (2731 posts) -

This is more Armored Core or Mech Assault than Front Mission. Front Mission was one of the few strategy RPGs I liked. I guess its better than nothing...? I'm reserving judgement. 

#20 Posted by MeatSim (10897 posts) -

This sounds like a good idea because I have no interest in a turn-based strategy mech game.

#21 Posted by RHCPfan24 (8609 posts) -

So is it Chromehounds? Along the lines of that? If so...."meh."

#22 Posted by Mjolnir (456 posts) -

The only Front Mission I ever played was 4, and I very much enjoyed it. I hope that keeping the customization  helps it maintain some of the strategy element. Needless to say I am curious as well.

#23 Posted by Det1 (190 posts) -

front mission 4 was WAY too technical for me. follow up attacks/picking the right traits was basically a game in itself, and the whole thinking process got really boring.
but there are so many ways that transforming front mission into a third person shooter could go wrong that I'm kinda on edge. But if they do the action part right, square's storyline will probably help promote this game into one of the better games.

#24 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@Meatsim said:
" This sounds like a good idea because I have no interest in a turn-based strategy mech game. "
Then play a different game.

It's disappointing to see the series being taken in this direction.  There's freshening a series up so that goes in new places while retaining the same feel (see:  Metroid Prime), but taking a strategy game series and turning it into something that's pure action is removing the game from the entire gameplay premise that the series is known for.
#25 Posted by addictedtopinescent (3645 posts) -

I like strategy better


@RHCPfan24 said:
" So is it Chromehounds? Along the lines of that? If so...."meh." "
Bro chromehounds was pretty rad
#26 Posted by Media_Master (3283 posts) -

sounds kinda generic

#27 Posted by MrKlorox (11209 posts) -

I REALLY liked FM3, and that was the only FM I've played. I was also hoping this was a turn based tactical RPG.

#28 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

Hmmm... I am suspicious of Square Enix produced action games. Usually they amount to a giant heap of manure. At most, it's got potential to grow into something worthwhile. But that never happens.

#29 Posted by Andborn (169 posts) -

Double Helix being involved...   be wary. They took Silent Hill: Homecoming and turdified it. And it would haven't taken much to fix what SH 4 fucked up, just revert to the exact same playstyle of the previous entries in the series, oh and hire someone who can think of legitimately scary creatures.

#30 Posted by theMcNasty (740 posts) -

Front Mission?

Never 'oid of it.

#31 Posted by Sticky_Pennies (2019 posts) -

Front Mission: Armored Core edition?
Meh... give me some turn-based robot-massacring instead, please.

#32 Edited by crusader8463 (14423 posts) -

The below arrow indicates my excitement level for this game once learning it is not going to be a tactical based game.

AWESOME A NEW FRONT MISSION GAME!IMAGINE A FRONT MISSION WITH ONLINE PLAY I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS GAME SINCE I PLAYED VANGUARD BANDITS AND FRONT MISSION 2 ON MY PSX!!!
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V
Neat
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V
Me still caring about this game.
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There is going to be a new what now?
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Current level of interest.

#33 Posted by jakob187 (21691 posts) -

Man, I miss Front Mission 4.  SUCH A GOOD GAME!!!

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