Anime Review

Gundam Battle Operation 2: Do Something Extremely Wicked!

Ah, finally, it’s come out on PC… And even though this is definitely far and away not the game for most people, Gundam Battle Operation is still a remarkable experience, especially if you’re of the competitive mindset. Seriously, as per the title, you should absolutely check this out how GBO2 handles competitive ranking. We’ll discuss this in the Rivals section.

If you’re a fan of games like War Thunder or World of Tanks, this is a Gundam game that’s fairly similar in the sense of it being a vehicle orientated competitive game. I would argue that besides just having some better design decisions like gameplay design allowing respawns in a match, the game’s monetization is shockingly less predatory regardless of whether or not it’s gacha. This alone is pretty refreshing, but there’s just a surprising amount of stuff that GBO2 gets right.

In spite of that, though, it’s somewhat slow and clunky. Eventually you can learn to move with a relative amount of grace, but it’s a significant effort to learn how to maneuver your giant hulking death machine once you start getting used to it.

General Gameplay

The best way to succinctly summarize the game is that it’s a Gundam-skinned third person shooter that’s got some classic Japanese jank/clunk ala older Souls titles, Monster Hunter, and so forth. Mobile Suit pilots all want one thing and it’s disgusting: a solid stagger on their opponent. This locks them into hit-stun which can then creates a massive opening. It’s probably not great to open a review with this, but if someone’s going to try the game after reading this, my best advice to them would be to absolutely start to grasp the stagger system immediately. The sooner they’re able to do so, the better off they’ll be relative to their opponents.

That does make the game sound super-unfun, though, and that’s it a matter of there being no recourse if you do get staggered, which in a bad enough situation is absolutely true. That said, unless you’re playing a support (poor supports), you’re likely going to have access to a dodge-roll which can be used to effectively reset engagements after you’ve been staggered, so long as your opponent doesn’t immediately follow-up on you – something which is typically nearly impossible or very difficult to do.

However, coming out of stagger in the right situations with certain aggressive tactics can absolutely let you win duels or escape less favorable conditions.

But, do exploit all of your invulnerability time after getting knocked down to disengage unless you know you can win with the fight you’re in. seriously.

Earlier mobile suits and later models are entirely different beasts. Typically, when in match-making, each mobile suit has a cost rating associated with it. If it’s too high – or too low – you won’t be able to use that mobile suit for that particular playlist until a reset comes – which playlists change every two hours. Similar to games like War Thunder, it’s in the lower-to-mid end of the spectrum that things really get the most interesting with late One Year War mobile suits going up against early Zeta era suits and more.

Exceedingly low rated matches can be a bit overly simplistic, and the suits you have available simply bland. It’s really around 300 that things pick up, but the real amazing thing here is that because this game encourages you to play all sorts of different matches at different ratings, you’re going to end up having a veritable stable of warhorses ready to ride into battle, with favorites for everything you might end up going into, fueled by the insanely massive roster that is Universal Century mecha. You might have a distaste in your mouth for low ratings or high ratings, but eventually you’ll probably find something you can use and enjoy, which one of the absolute beauties of the game.

It’s worth mentioning that a solid wingman is invaluable, and keeping a teammate alive is significantly more important than War Thunder or World of Tanks. A team mate who’s right on the verge of death can still set you up and provide massive amounts of support supposing they can get off a few staggers or simply just keep chipping away at the enemy’s HP. This does make less competent teammates infinitely more frustrating to deal with, but a significant portion of the community is usually pretty mechanically familiar with the game.


The rated competitive matches of GBO2 aren’t really much different than the normal matches, to the degree that I don’t see any need to go into real detail there. It’s the same thing, only you’re playing for seeing a number go higher so you can feel better about yourself.

Hey, I’m not knocking it.

The really important thing is this though: how many times have we actually had teams that suck playing competitively? Quite a lot, I’m sure. We’re all gamers. We’ve all been there. It sucks. The thing is though, is that in some situations, I think it’s definitely a factor of: is it really the person who’s complaining about their team or is it actually the team? Sometimes, that person’s dead weight! So if you’re curious whether or not you’re Nero, Battle Operation at least tells you.

You see, the game breaks up the players on both teams into pairs of rivals – basically the closest matched players in terms of skill rating. These rivals are then compared at the end of the game, and whether or not you win against your rival is part of your overall scoring factor. This is massive when it comes to competitive as it makes it so that when you lose a match, but do better than your rival, you effectively hold your rating instead of dropping it. Therefore, if you’re genuinely held back by your team for a match, it’s not an issue. You can still effectively progress forward and have the personal satisfaction that yes, indeed, it wasn’t you that sucked.

It was everyone else.

Let’s be honest, sometimes that’s what helps us keep it together as gamers, workers, students, whatever we are: at least you’re not actually as bad as the other guy.

Servers & Performance

On Steam, the servers have been… Less than reliable. I have to admit that this feels sort of typical these days, but for a game like this, it’s hurt it tremendously. The inability to actually play a match is frustrating, especially given that there’s nothing else to the game. Even the true single player experience is its own, entirely separate game (that isn’t even on PC!), so if you’re really craving more and it’s down, well.

It’s also worth mentioning that the menus handle terribly, and the overall lobby area can and usually does drag pretty hard, too. The matches themselves are decent, and there aren’t much complaints there. When someone is lagging, it’s not handled too gracefully. On PS4, I noticed that you couldn’t really play on wifi that well at all, but I can’t speak for this on PC as I’ve only played hardwired to the internet.


Give this game a shot. Seriously. This isn’t just because it’s an impressively average Gundam game that is at least somewhat accurate to the source material and we don’t really even get those in the US anymore, I mean this is genuinely something that’s worth experiencing so you can actually just stop and stare at every competitive mode in matchmaking for the rest of your life and go: “Wow, that one really obscure Japanese game got this way better than it had any right to and no one else has figured this out in the [current year],” and truly, that is priceless.

When the servers are working, at least. Otherwise, when they’re not, it’s fairly understandable the rating it has on Steam.

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