Macross M32Q2014 issue

Pho­tos cour­tesy of

Pilot­ing your dreams in Macross

William Har­ri­son, GI con­tribut­ing editor

As you may not know, I used to want to be a fight­er pilot because of an old car­toon I saw called Robot­ech. Then, I was intro­duced to the real series called Macross, and my love for all things that flew was renewed even more. I also want­ed to take up engi­neer­ing to make the Varitech fight­ers I love so much a real­i­ty; hell, I may still get that chance one day or some­where my designs may help some­one do what I could­n’t in my life­time. Any­way, we’re here to talk about a game that nev­er made it to the U.S. because of the man who made Robot­ech famous and is an out-and-out bad per­son. Macross M3 is up and its Varitechs, Zin­tredies and mis­siles, oh my!

The game takes place dur­ing the time Max was start­ing out up till he meets Meria. From then on, you can choose either Max or Meria until the point in the sto­ry where their daugh­ter is born. Then, you can only choose her as a playable char­ac­ter. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, I don’t know if you get to play as any­one else because there is a mis­sion short­ly after their daugh­ter joins U.N. Spa­cy and has a cri­sis of con­science, which is where my ven­ture ends. I’m not sure if there’s a glitch at this point or a choice that is made that can change that. So, I don’t know how the game ends but that does­n’t mean the game isn’t worth playing. 

The con­trols have improved com­pared to its pre­vi­ous coun­ter­parts of the VF‑X series. The graph­ics for this Dream­cast title are a lot smoother than the PS1 games, as well, but you would expect that.

The game­play, how­ev­er, seems to present not much of a chal­lenge as its VFX coun­ter­part. The learn­ing curve may not seem to be there, but it is in the form of a mis­sion where the dif­fi­cul­ty goes from “Oh that’s nice” to “Oh god, why won’t you die?!” I did find it fun­ny that I ran out of mis­siles only to dis­cov­er lat­er that they refill over time. Noth­ing real­ly stands out too much but the graph­ics and the sto­ry that I can fig­ure out is good. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, I was unable to fin­ish this game because at the time my grasp of the Japan­ese lan­guage was very nonex­is­tent.

The last word on this is that it’s a real­ly fun game and presents a good time to be had by all. Well, except for the fact that at least that one stage is a pain. My score for the game would be high­er if I was able to fin­ish the game and I may still one day. Until then, if it some­how finds its way to your door, invite it in, have a good time and share a bit of sake with the essence of an old friend.

Macross VF-X22Q2014 issue

Pho­tos cour­tesy of

Find your way in the stars

ありがと ございました おなしと の おとこのしと!

And for the non-Nihon­go speak­ing, thank you ladies and gen­tle­men! It’s great to be

William Har­ri­son, GI con­tribut­ing editor

back and for the Far East­ern (Nihon, Nihon­go = Japan­ese lan­guage) issue. I under­stand that a lot of peo­ple may be won­der­ing why it’s not called Robot­ech. Well, let’s just stick with the ver­sion that was released in Japan. The fun­ny thing is, this game was actu­al­ly sched­uled for an Amer­i­can release but was lat­er can­celed because of the “cre­ator” of the Robot­ech series. His demands were a bit on the ridicu­lous side and rather than bow to him, Big West/Bandai Visu­al (before it merged with Nam­co) made sure that the Amer­i­can release nev­er saw the light of day.

But if you knew the right places to go and were will­ing to pay the price, you could have your very own copy like I do. It’s been a while since I’ve been able to play it, but this is still one of the best games I have played in a long time and the fan boy in me was all over this when I saw it in an import store in Greenville, S.C. I fell in love with Macross VF-X2.

VF-X2 is a flight-style com­bat shoot­er with a bit of an arcade feel to it, loads of fun and not too bad of a sto­ry to add to the Macross uni­verse. You are Arges Fock­er, rook­ie pilot who joins the U.N. Spa­cy and is short­ly recruit­ed to the Raven Fight­ing Squadron. You bat­tle through sev­er­al mis­sions, pilot­ing sev­er­al of the vari­able fight­ers from the orig­i­nal Valkyre to the VF-22 (Macross plus YF-21: The 21 was des­ig­nat­ed the 22 to hon­or Guld Goa Bow­man after his death). 

The game plays very well and the sounds and effects will put you in the right frame of mind of the Macross series, but, unfor­tu­nate­ly, it does have a few bugs.

One of the main bugs occurs when you beat the game: The clos­ing cin­e­mat­ic glitch­es and plays for two frames then either freezes or boots you to the cred­its screen. That’s heart­break­ing because it kind of ruins that whole sat­is­fac­tion of beat­ing the game. The game is sol­id as a whole, but the glitch­es kind of cut into the fun. If you love Robotech/Macross, don’t let the glitch­es keep you from a sol­id rep­re­sen­ta­tive in the series.