If there are two pop culture staples that have remained extremely popular throughout the world for the past 50 plus years, it's giant robots and giant monsters. From anime like Neon Genesis Evangelion (which will hit Netflix next year) to Hollywood blockbusters like Transformers and Pacific Rim, there's just something about larger than life behemoths duking it out. Enter Override: Mech City Brawl, a mech brawler game that puts players in giant mechanical robots and faces them off either against other players online (or locally) or against equally giant monsters.
This may sound rather bare-bones from a content standpoint at first but, for the relatively low price that Modus Games is asking for Override: Mech City Brawl, there's a surprisingly sufficient amount of fun to be had with the game. In fact, while the multiplayer will prove to be the biggest draw for Override: Mech City Brawl, its single-player campaign should not be discounted. It can perhaps a little repetitive at times, but there's a real sense of accomplishment from fighting off a hoard of monsters while trying to save the world.
Plot-wise, it's clear that Override: Mech City Brawl draws heavily from both classic monster movies and Japanese anime to tell its story. Players start by choosing their mech (of which there are 12 available at launch) and take that character on a globe-trotting adventure to defend different cities on different continents from monster attacks. The mode works by advancing weeks and days of in-game time and allowing players to choose their own missions, while every so often throwing in an important story mission that advances the plot forward. Each mission has a different difficulty level, though the prizes awarded are better the more difficult the mission.
The missions themselves are fairly straight forward in Override: Mech City Brawl's campaign: fight the monsters until none are left standing. Again, there's a slight repetitious nature to this mode, but the game's customization options - from different mods that affect stats depending on what's equipped to various weapons that can be used against the monster threat - will keep things relatively fresh for hours. The story is just interesting enough, though not groundbreaking, that it'll more than likely hold the interest of most. Plus, like every other portion of Override: Mech City Brawl, the story can be played with a friend, though the campaign is seemingly limited to local play.
That's not the case for Override: Mech City Brawl's competitive modes, which feature both local and online play. It's where where the game really shines. There's the typical one versus one mode, a Brawl mode with up to four players (either in free-for-all or teams) and ranked play. What makes these modes truly satisfying is the option to have up to four players controlling one bot. It's almost Voltron or Power Rangers-esque in its execution, allowing each of the players to control a limb on the mech. This requires a great deal of cooperation and timing, however, but it's arguably the most rewarding.
Winning (or completing campaign missions successfully) will unlock cosmetic skins to equip for certain mechs, new weapons packs, and mods that enhance stats. For players who want to become the best at smashing other player robots to pieces, Ranked play is certainly the way to go. This level of competitiveness will surely be what keeps Override: Mech City Brawl afloat for months or years to come. It also helps that the matchmaking system is smooth enough and latency issues are hardly ever a problem.
Override: Mech City Brawl's maps, while nice to look at it, lack diversity. The buildings crumble a little too easily and sometimes everything feels too weightless for the apparent size and girth of these mechs. There's also a sense that the game is never quite difficult enough, especially in its campaign. Even hard missions aren't exactly difficult to get through alone and players will ultimately come out of it still feeling like a super powered god. Depending on a player's love of challenge, this could disappoint.
Overall, Override: Mech City Brawl is a worthy entry in the mech brawler genre and it more than earns its price tag with deep enough content and customization, a supremely fun multiplayer mode that proves that indie games can do it just as well as any AAA title, and a campaign mode that, while simple, will keep most entertained. If a fast-paced, giant robot smack down is what a player is looking for, this is the game for them.
Override: Mech City Brawl is available now on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC for $29.99. Screen Rant was provided an Xbox One copy for this review.