When Guilty Gear made its long awaited return to the fighting stage a year and a half ago, I praised it for its striking visual style and satisfying combat engine.
However, it wasn’t a game without flaws, as I found the roster to be quite limited and the implementation of the online multiplayer clunky and rather unintuitive.
With the release of Revelator, the talented folks at ARC SYSTEM WORKS have addressed all of my concerns in one fell swoop, creating one of the most content rich and polished fighting games of their illustrious career.
MSRP: $59.99(PS4) $49.99(PS3)
Platforms: PS3, PS4
Voice Acting: JPN only
Multiplayer: Online multiplayer, includes cross-gen capabilities
Unlike some other hyped up fighting game that was released earlier this year which will go unnamed, Revelator is a title with all the bells and whistles expected from modern fighting games, and then some.
Let me quickly list all the modes of play in revelator. Story, Arcade, Versus, M.O.M, Tutorial, Combo, Mission, Training and of course the Online mode.
While most of those are fairly self explanatory, the M.O.M. mode requires a bit of explanation as it has nothing to do with your mom. It’s actually a mode where the player earns medals to spend as currency to improve a character over time, allowing them to tackle more challenging AI opponents.
The story mode in Revelator continues the trend set by -Signs- as it is a 3~ hour anime movie that purely exists to be watched and not played.
The plot is as off the rails as ever, but it was still a thoroughly entertaining watch which I sat through in just two sittings.
This being the new iteration, there are some mechanics which were fined tuned and some added in, which serves to spice up the overall flow of combat in interesting ways.
The five new characters available at launch are just as unique as the rest of the cast, and it was great to see old favorites like Johnny and Jam return to the fray.
New contenders like Jack-O, Raven and Kum all have their own quirks, and even though I didn’t naturally gravitate towards their style of gameplay, I couldn’t help but appreciate how dynamic their move sets were.
My biggest complaint about -Signs- was the implementation of the multiplayer, which I felt was rather unintuitive, requiring many extra steps just to get some matches with a friend.
This has been corrected in Revelator, with online multiplayer offering a new hub area for the various different regions around the world with arcade cabinets players can jump onto at anytime, and player match rooms that are easy to create and search for.
Ranked mode returns in standard fashion, but being able to fish for items by spending in-game currency and chat with other players in the hub while waiting for matches made the process feel much smoother.
Revelator still provides cross-play between PS3 and PS4 owners, which worked well during my test bouts.
The netcode itself is a bit of a mixed bag, as I found many 2 bars that were quite playable and some 4 bars which played more like 0 bars, with stuttering and input drops off the wazoo.
Luckily, those cases were few, but enough that I feel obligated to note them all the same.
Lastly, developers have opted to completely remove all English voice acting from the game after originally including in the first iteration.
It seems like an odd move, and while I do agree that the Japanese dubs are superior, the absence of the English dub after having the precedent to have them included was quite disappointing.
Each and every mode available in Revelator feels as though there was a lot of time spent in making it not only functional but making it feel very useful.
While it was expected that Revelator would retain the fantastic visuals and incredibly deep and satisfying combat engine, Little touches like F.A.Q. bubbles popping up in the pause menu to the insanely comprehensive combo/mission modes which do much more than teach simple combos by breaking down each and every mechanic it has to offer along with potent tactics, Revelator feels like a title that’s been polished to an absolute gleam. It’s an absolute joy to play and one that I believe will stand head and shoulders above the rest of the anime fighting game crowd for some time to come.
Fun Tidbit: Be sure to download Raven and Kum off the PSN while they’re free if you have any and I mean ANY plans to pick this game up on the future. Also, I’m excited to see Dizzy back in action when she arrives later this year!
Review copy of game provided by publisher.