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View Full Version : I played G-BIKE. It's nice.



Hipster Username
12-18-2014, 12:30 AM
Final Fantasy VII G-Bike moseyed into the Japanese app market on October 30th, but quickly hit more than a few potholes after release. I managed to get it downloaded the morning after it became available yet I could not play it until the next day because of an error in Square Enix's servers. Even after finally being able to play I was disappointed to see that even though G-Bike looks amazing, it doesn't really play all that amazingly.

G-Bike is a great nostalgic trip. Nearly every enemy encountered in the game comes from the original Final Fantasy VII, with few exceptions. There are even timed weekly events where you can take on the likes of Bahamut and Ifrit, letting you get their summon materia or a weapon or motorcycle with their theme. In fact, the latest event battle is a fight with Reno (complete with Rude attacking you from a helicopter and Reno trapping you in a pyramid).
A few of the game's missions even require you to protect the truck from the original mini-game from monster attacks.
To top it off, there's just something special about whaling on an enemy with one of Cloud's limit breaks and having Tifa jump in afterwards to finish it off with Final Heaven.
The sound track is made up of remixes from Final Fantasy VII's original sound track and they are well done and well placed. In particular, my favorites are the renditions of Bombing Mission and the Opening theme. When paired with the in-game graphics (which are very reminiscent of Crisis Core and Dissidia) and Tetsuya Nomura's updated versions of the character portraits, G-Bike has a pleasantly relaxing atmosphere that fits in well with the rest of the Compilation.

But nostalgia can only take a game so far. G-Bike has issues with lag on certain devices, both in general performance and in input recognition. The latter just isn't an acceptable problem in a game that is basically Temple Run with some RPG elements added for good measure. Before the game was patched it would freeze during missions and even crash when limit breaks were used.
Boss battles are a nice addition to the distance runner genre but there's a lot to be desired here; while the bosses do look amazing, battling them boils down to hitting the boss while it's close and docile then getting ready to dodge an attack or two when it decides to speed ahead of you.
Then there's the boss limit breaks. Much like Cloud's limit breaks, they cannot be dodged because they work like quick time events. Those players that like to beat stages with flawless finishes are forced to grind until they are strong enough to beat the boss before it has time for its limit gauge to charge.
Speaking of grinding, be prepared to do a lot of it. In order to boost the stats of Cloud's sword or bike, you need raw materials to refine. You do get a piece every day you log in but for the most part materials are won from a roulette game at the Gold Saucer. The key word here is "roulette"; materials that aren't won can be bought but with in-game gems but it is very easy to run out of gems over the course of just a few hours of gameplay, forcing you to wait a few days to collect gems from the daily login bonus or buy them using real money.
And as is the case with many mobile games these days, G-Bike requires a constant internet connection to run because of the admittedly awesome timed event missions and the somewhat less awesome but still kinda nice Square Enix announcement stream.

In short, G-Bike is like a piece of unrefined materia. There's a lot of potential but it still isn't quite there yet.
With some code optimization to reduced compatibility issues and some event missions that don't require you to be near maxed out and the game would be even better than it already is. An English release would be nice, too.
Overall I rate G-Bike a completely unironic 7/10. The game is simple and fun to play but aside from its nostalgic elements it doesn't have a lot going for it unless Temple Run is your jam.

Mirage
12-18-2014, 05:04 AM
Based on your description, I would think it was a 6/10. You're not participating in the score-inflation trend, are you?

Hipster Username
12-18-2014, 06:17 AM
Based on your description, I would think it was a 6/10. You're not participating in the score-inflation trend, are you?

Temple Run is my jam. More specifically, Shadow Escaper is my jam. Was my jam.

I miss Shadow Escaper.

Rostum
12-24-2014, 01:28 AM
Can't wait to get this one, when's the English version out?

Hipster Username
12-24-2014, 05:46 AM
Can't wait to get this one, when's the English version out?

[Uncomfortable laughter]