Review – Azur Lane: Crosswave

Kawaii anime battleship girls. That is probably the easiest possible way to describe Azur Lane: Crosswave. This is an arena battler action-RPG featuring anime girls wearing far too little to be blasting around at high speeds on the sea. You fight other anime girls also wearing far too little, as well as massive battleships, alongside whatever other things may pop up in front of you. It’s a pretty basic premise, to be fair.

One thing that’s never really described is how the “Katume” works. This is what lets cute girls turn into massive battleships. While all the characters are still small, and look very much like well, girls, they have guns hanging off of them and the ability to shoot torpedoes and other weaponry commonly associated with the battleships. All I want to know is are you already wearing clothes with guns tailored onto them, or is this some kind of ability that makes the guns come out of their skin? Are the guns part of them? I guess we will never know, because after the first bit of dialogue, the ability is never mentioned again.

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Yup, she’s named after the famous battleship… What do you mean you didn’t see her name there?

Jumping right into the story, there is a lot of dialogue. A whole lot, and if you want to follow the story, you will have to read it all yourself. That’s right, as to be expected, there’s no English voice acting at all in the game. There is a lot of Japanese voice acting however, and in battles you’ll hear the same loud shouts over and over again to let you know your abilities are ready to be used.

After a ton of reading, then moving through the overworld map to your next few events, which are all just more reading with different background, you’ll finally get into your first fight. Azur Lane: Crosswave has a pretty simple technique for you to always succeed in battle: don’t stop moving. If you strafe around enemies, very few attacks will hit you. If you find yourself being threatened by an area of effect attack, you can dash to the side and most likely avoid being hit. Nice and easy. One thing the game doesn’t teach you is how overpowered torpedoes are. When you come up against a massive battleship, a few torpedoes will take it out in no time.

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You don’t think that maybe a lot more clothing would be better?

As mentioned above, your character will say something every time an ability is ready. Every single time. It’s safe to say that it becomes tiresome pretty quickly. You have three abilities at any given time. If you use them correctly, your character will never shut up. The background music and sound effects are fairly stock, nothing too significant, but it all fits in well with the game. The battle stages rarely seem to change, always looking the exact same, just with different enemies. They look nice, but after three or more battles in the same location, it starts to get really boring.

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Get use to this view. You’ll be seeing it a lot.

Azur Lane: Crosswave is a fairly simple arena fighting game. Much like a lot of anime games of the style, once you find something that works in your favor, you’ll just repeat it in every battle. It’s a lot of the same stuff from beginning to end, and if you’re too lazy to read, or just want to get into the next fight, you’ll end up missing large sections of the story. If arena fighters are your thing, this might be a good one for your collection, but if you want to buy it just to look at kawaii anime battleship girls, you may just be bored out of your mind with its repetitiveness.

 

Graphics: 7.5

The game looks pretty good, but that’s the least you should expect given it’s basically comprised of reused assets.

Gameplay: 6.0

Fun albeit repetitive arena battles with guns. And kawaii battleship anime girls. Strafing and dodging is way too helpful, to the point of turning battles into menial chores.

Sound: 4.0

Nothing against reading, but it’s hard to pay attention when someone is speaking a different language while you try to read a whole paragraph of text. There are also way too many repetitive voice lines being thrown at you while you’re in a battle.

Fun Factor: 6.0

The character designs are fun, some look absolutely insane. The battles are also fun, although devoid of strategy. The problem is that the game will throw the same fights at you, over and over and over again.

Final Verdict: 6.0

Azur Lane: Crosswave is available now on PlayStation 4 and PC.

Reviewed on PlayStation 4.

A copy of Azur Lane: Crosswave was provided by the publisher.

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