This is a two part review as if you purchase the physical anniversary edition of Guilty Gear you will get both Guilty Gear and Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R but you can purchase them both separately on the Eshop for the Switch.
You can check out the Guilty Gear review over here!
I love the Guilty Gear series. I’ve gone into detail of that love over on the Guilty Gear review but looking at the games I’ve collected over the years I can see it’s mostly consisting of the many iterations of Guilty Gear XX. There have been 4 revisions of GGXX through the years and each one came with a balance, character or new story mode to work your way through. Just because I collected them doesn’t mean I was particular that amazing at the game, I remember seeing Genshiken and being jealous of Kousaka’s skills. Now I go back to these titles and I’m surprised how much better I’ve become but is this port one of the best of the bunch and a time to dive into an Anniversary or just another iteration best put in the collection and forgotten about?
GGXXACPR (aka GGXX for the rest of the review) is your classic 2D PS2 fighter but dialed up to 11 and thrown at you then picked up while still covered in motorbike oil and thrown at you again. The entire aesthetic and style are metal throughout from the characters design to the story and the music. All of GGXX feels like it’s still bleeding through from electric guitars being played to perfection. The gameplay is fast and responsive, incredibly balanced and refined (it should be by that many releases) This results in a fighter that looks like it ran on the PS2 but plays like it was a release on PS4. If you’ve been playing any recent 2D anime fighters there is a short learning curve ahead, the basics of dusting opponents into the air and following up are just a little trickier here. Everything else feels like a comfy pair of trainers.
There’s plenty of content in GGXX and a fantastic amount of solo stuff to be played but if you’re curious about what this port brings to the Switch? It’s sadly nothing is new. Arcade, Story, Survival, MOM (collect items and coins in a cluster of combos and mad fun), Vs, Team VS and Challenges are all present. These are worth the asking price alone if you’ve never played GGXX since the original back in the day though. The enjoyment from the classic nonsense story is still here and the game still has the insane Ino boss battle that had people screaming at CRT televisions because it felt like it was cheating. The Switch port is a small nightmare to get some moves to complete with the Joycons but that’s more a hardware issue with 2D fighters in general as the games input is spot on.
The biggest disappointment in GGXX isn’t even the lack of options for visuals or the fact the game feels like a bare bones port to Switch, it’s the netplay. GGXrd has fantastic online and although I didn’t expect the team to have gone to that level of trouble for this port it’s disappointing they haven’t patched in some basics. GGXX never had much of a successful network mode and it’s the same here. You’re options are Ranked or Friendly and after your 1st fight that’s it, back to the menu, hope you had fun! No option for replay to best of 3 that has become the standard over the years. No lobbies or options other than similar title or similar area. It’s such a disappointment given that the code holds up pretty well even to this day if you can find a match. It’s the one mode you’d hope by now it would be looked at and given some life. It would give a lot more value to replaying a classic game that’s been balanced so ridiculously well over the years.
GGXX is such a fantastic game but this port to the Switch is such a hard sell at this point. I was mainly excited for this as its Guilty Gears big anniversary event and it was a big old dive into nostalgia. The problem was that the more I played the more I realised that the nostalgia wasn’t really that old. I’ve still got a port of GGXX on the Xbox360 and that’s only the previous generation of games console. It’s a great experience on any console but the lack of online features and fact it’s a bare-bones port really do hold it back. Will you have fun here with the content at hand despite the lack of new features? Of course you will. There’s a reason this game gets ported constantly, it’s still fun today as it was back then. Just don’t be expecting those gears to turn anything new when they spin.
7/10 – It’s still Heaven just not enough Hell to Rock
*Review code provided by PQube – Check them out here!*
Did you like what you read? Did you enjoy the fact there were no adverts for your adblocker to deal with? Maybe consider buying your old pal ElderlyGoose a Kofi?
Just click the link here https://ko-fi.com/A0A18JTG and consider yourself sorted for one good deed done for the day!
I don’t run a Patreon because all the work I create ends up on the site in one way or another and I fund the site myself so any money does directly go to the site to fund the web hosting and such, anything left over will go on games and coffee!