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The Azure Striker Gunvolt series has done well for Inti Creates and fans. It has provided people with a Mega Man-style game with well designed characters and interesting gameplay. The two Nintendo 3DS installments inspired spin-offs and later ports. Up until now, the PC version of Azure Striker Gunvolt was the best you could get. Now, the Nintendo Switch version of the two games have become something even more special.

 

Azure Striker Gunvolt: Striker Pack is exactly what it sounds like. People get Azure Striker Gunvolt and Azure Striker Gunvolt 2. But, it does not look the same way it did. Part of this is due to the standard HD upgrades people would expect from such a port. The character sprites do not look all that difference, but the backgrounds, CGs, and portraits look much crisper and cleaner. It is a far prettier game that is much better organized, since everything is on one screen. While it was nice to have that extra information on the bottom screen, regarding abilities and such, it is so much cleaner with the UI changes. I didn’t even miss the second screen.

 

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What I didn’t expect was how noticeable the improved framerate in Azure Striker Gunvolt: Striker Pack is. These two games are rather fast-paced. There is constant movement as both Gunvolt and Copen. You are always looking for opportunities to tag enemies and hit them with the Flashfield as Gunvolt, or attack with dashes and laser beams with Copen. Things look soother, of course. But, there is also a sense of improved responsiveness. It is easier to get through missions faster, because the game is better recognizing inputs.

 

This is incredibly important thanks to the Kudos system. Azure Striker Gunvolt 2’s Kudos system is used for score boosting, should you avoid being hit. This means you can go with Cautious, Fearless, or Gutless. It makes it easier to hear Joule or Lola’s songs, if you are good at dealing or avoiding damage. (Some secret Kudos opportunities gives you chances to earn extra points.) Banking them, via using skills, reaching checkpoints, or getting through a level, gets you those extra points. Building up these high combos, hitting foes, and avoiding attacks seems a little more seamless with that frame rate boost. This improved version of the system is now in Azure Striker Gunvolt too, which makes both games feel more consistent.

 

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Then, there is the extra content. In the original Azure Striker Gunvolt, some dialogue was cut from the Nintendo 3DS release. There was a lot of dialogue between stages removed, so people may not have completely understood how deep the relationship between Gunvolt and Joule was or understood everything going on. That is all restored here, along with the new translation. All of the Azure Striker Gunvolt 2 DLC is also present. These add-ons are just as important as that extra story content, as it meant new song sets with 150% credit and experience boosts, multiple mission packs, and a Speedrun mode. Everything is complete and there. You don’t have to worry about missing out on story or buying extra add-ons to complete everything. It is so much better that way.

 

Azure Striker Gunvolt: Striker Pack means Azure Striker Gunvolt and Azure Striker Gunvolt 2 are now at their best. They are still both stationary and portable. They run smoothly and fluidly, with HD graphics. Everything is well organized in the UI. All of the original’s story content is there, with the sequel’s DLC easily and immediately accessible. It is the complete experience, one that people can pick up with confidence.

 

Azure Striker Gunvolt: Striker Pack is available for the Nintendo Switch.

Jenni Lada
Jenni has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, CheatCC, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.

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