It’s been…a long time since I played an Armored Core (let’s not talk about it), and I told myself I’d finish all of them before tackling the latest, sixth, entry.. Well I’m glad I didn’t listen to me, because Armored Core VI is a seriously great time.
The theatre of building a mech, taking it out to deal some violence, and then sitting with the unnerving realities of the dystopian narrative all work with a wonderful synchronicity that makes this game very, very hard to put down. Seriously, I was planning on just taking a quick look at this game to write up some Steam Deck performance impressions before retreating to my backlog, but here I am, grabbing another sortie and hitting the surface of Rubicon to start some more trouble.
The game is also gorgeous. I mean, most AAA games are these days, but there’s a certain visual aesthetic on display here that not only hits the neurons which love a good graphic, but also really helps immerse me in the world and the carnage of it all. From the glorious explosions to the wonderful visualizations of the Armored Core’s internal HUD, the game continues to offer visual treats that are matched with excellent gameplay that, I admit, frustrates me with its difficulty at times. Yet Armored Core VI promises victory if I take the time to learn what I’m doing wrong and build out a better kit when my wits alone aren’t enough. It’s nice to see at least one thing in my life go well.
And did I mention it’s a good time on Steam Deck? Armored Core VI explodes to life in full form on Valve’s handheld and it’s the go-to way to play for me. — Claire Jackson