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Combining Might and Delight in Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon

Summary

  • Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon is the latest refinement of FromSoftware’s “tough love” formula where players find delight in their hard-earned victories over incredibly difficult opponents.
  • The sheer number of configurations you can make in Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon means you can create a mech for just about any occasion.
  • Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon launches August 25, 2023, for Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. It’s available for pre-order today on the Xbox Store.

Attacking the massive Juggernaut mech’s exposed engine manifold was proving to be an impossible task.

It wasn’t that the Reverse Joint Legs I equipped weren’t nimble enough to glide away from their flurry of missiles; they were more than capable. And it wasn’t that my dual machineguns and missile launchers were a poor choice heading into this boss battle — they certainly helped me carve a path through the enemy-filled fortress earlier. But its pairing was not the most efficient mixture to hit the Juggernaut where it hurt: from behind.

Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon Screenshot

Despite its colossal size and massive tank-like treads, the “Jug” could turn on a dime while keeping its armored chest between my weapons and its weak spot. It wasn’t long until the battle turned into an effort in futility. With my ammunition depleted, I was forced to retreat to the mech Assembly and build a new Armored Core to try again.

Despite this challenge during a recent hands-on session with FromSoftware’s upcoming Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon, the boss battle was a perfect showcase of the game’s captivating and inherent difficulty – you’ll be given all the tools to succeed, but it’ll be up to you to find the best combination of weapons to components that match your style of play and crack the obstacle(s) that stands in your way.

When it comes to the Assembly aspect and customization, we try to create as much variety as possible so players can really create the mech they want to fight with.

“When it comes to the Assembly aspect and customization, we try to create as much variety as possible so players can really create the mech they want to fight with,” Producer Yasunori Ogura and Director Masaru Yamamura explained to me, who were both on-hand during the preview event. “So, what we try to do is create several archetypes that become a baseline for balancing across the whole game. We can then use several of these different movements and attack types as a throughline that we can adjust as needed. So based on that, we can create the necessary balance for certain parts, and make sure that even the weakest types can get through certain areas of the game.”

Learning your opponent’s patterns, searching for weaknesses, and finding solutions to defeating epic bosses has become a staple of FromSoftware games for years now, especially over the last decade with its string of critical hits like Elden Ring, Dark Souls, and Bloodborne – all of which are manifesting themselves in unique ways in Armored Core VI, the latest refinement of their “tough love” formula where players find delight in their hard-earned victories over incredibly difficult opponents.

Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon Screenshot

“We feel good about the comparisons,” Ogura and Yamamura said. “When we set out to make Armored Core VI, it wasn’t a case of, ‘Let’s remake Armored Core,’ it was, ‘Let’s find out what makes Armored Core great,’ and bring that back to the modern audience and to the people who only know us from the last 10 years of games that we’ve made. To do that, we wanted to respect the original formula while still incorporating this knowledge and (development) experience gained. We didn’t want to directly shoehorn in anything that didn’t make sense. So, each feature of Armored Core VI is designed for it to be Armored Core… and we hope people understand that through playing it and hope that shines through in the end.”

Back to the mech Assembly, which is essentially a massive garage and component marketplace, I cycle through the various items available to me in this early phase of the game, seeking the best combination of both mech and weapon components that could give me an edge against the Juggernaut.

“When we set out to make Armored Core VI, it wasn’t a case of, ‘Let’s remake Armored Core,’ it was, ‘Let’s find out what makes Armored Core great.’

I prefer to play nimble, so I didn’t want to swap out my Reverse Joint Legs for Bipedal or Tank configurations – but the number of different weapon arrangements was feeling daunting. What was going to make the best impact? I didn’t know where to start until I picked up the clues AC6 was throwing down as it guided me through this early part of the game. In this case, I noticed some newer items had recently become available for purchase, like a Vertical Missile Launcher which rains missiles down from above. Could this be the missing piece to taking down the Juggernaut? Likely.

I continue to tweak my new Armored Core build by swapping out the dual machineguns for a powerful Bazooka in one hand and a massive Energy Sword in the other (in case I run out of ammo). With the Vertical Missile Launcher in tow, I feel this combination of power and speed will be the edge I need to achieve victory. I selected the Sortie from the main menu and tried again.

To help newer Armored Core players in deciding what may be the best components to equip, this mech Assembly customization aspect will have an online community component as well — players will be able to share their recommended mech loadouts they used to overcome a particular boss or level. It wasn’t available for our session but aligns with the community hint aspect seen in other FromSoftware games, like Elden Ring and Dark Souls where players could leave messages to warn others of dangers ahead.

Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon Screenshot

Returning to the encounter, I made short work of the Juggernaut as I utilized the nimble, omni-directional abilities of my mech – hovering in the air as well as skirting from side to side on the ground to avoid Jug’s attacks – while the vertical missile barrage continued to rain pain down on its weak spot, turning it into a massive pile of scrap in a matter of minutes. An extremely satisfying conclusion to the first of many more difficult encounters yet to come.

Although my time with this near-complete build was limited, it demonstrated the strength of the game’s playability, customization, and overall baddassery which has been a very long-time coming for Armored Core fans. Having never played an Armored Core game until this preview session, I can understand the excitement that fans have been waiting nearly a decade for.

“To see that initial reaction that it was coming back, and to see people happy for that, was just extremely uplifting for us… to know there’s still people who care.”

“It’s been 10 Years since the last Armored Core, so we’ve been keeping our fans waiting a long time. To see that initial reaction that it was coming back, and to see people happy for that, was just extremely uplifting for us… to know there’s still people who care,” Ogura and Yamamura said.

“Since the last AC, the online atmosphere has changed in terms of how information is shared. Back then we only really had the Japanese audience to gauge; we didn’t really have a good lock on what the overseas audience wanted or enjoyed. So, when we announced the game back in December, this reaction from overseas from players worldwide was tremendously exciting and surprising and reassuring for us, to see that there’s people all over the world who have been waiting for another Armored Core. That was great to see.”

Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon Screenshot

Fans won’t have long to wait as Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon is set for release next month on August 25, 2023, for Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S with support for Smart Delivery and Optimized for Xbox Series X|S. You can pre-order it today on the Xbox Store today in two configurations, Standard Edition and Deluxe Edition.

Xbox Live

ARMORED CORE™ VI FIRES OF RUBICON™ – Deluxe Edition

Bandai Namco Entertainment America Inc.

63

Pre-order now to receive the following bonus content:
MELANDER C3 G13 Special Customization “TENDERFOOT”
• MELANDER C3 parts set (early unlock)*
• Emblem (early unlock)*
• Exclusive AC Decal
* Early Unlock: The parts set and the emblem can also be obtained by progressing through the game. The Deluxe Edition includes:
• Full game
• Exclusive Digital Artbook & Original Soundtrack
Allows players to view concept art and listen to in-game music. Combining FromSoftware’s longstanding expertise in mech games with their signature action gameplay, ARMORED CORE VI FIRES OF RUBICON brings a brand-new action experience to the series. Dynamic, Omni-directional Battles
Players will pilot their mech in fast-paced, omni-directional battles, taking advantage of massive stages and their mech’s mobility on land and in the air to ensure victory. Customized Parts for Individual Battle Styles
Customize Armored Core parts to suit a large variety of playstyles. Selecting different parts not only changes the mech’s attacks, but also directly affects its movement and battle style, so each mission can be approached with a unique mech strategy. Thrilling Boss Battles
Deploy a wide variety of offensive and defensive tactics at close and long range to take down powerful enemy bosses.

Xbox Live

ARMORED CORE™ VI FIRES OF RUBICON™

Bandai Namco Entertainment America Inc.

63

Pre-order now to receive the following bonus content:
MELANDER C3 G13 Special Customization “TENDERFOOT”
• MELANDER C3 parts set (early unlock)*
• Emblem (early unlock)*
• Exclusive AC Decal
* Early Unlock: The parts set and the emblem can also be obtained by progressing through the game. Combining FromSoftware’s longstanding expertise in mech games with their signature action gameplay, ARMORED CORE VI FIRES OF RUBICON brings a brand-new action experience to the series. Dynamic, Omni-directional Battles
Players will pilot their mech in fast-paced, omni-directional battles, taking advantage of massive stages and their mech’s mobility on land and in the air to ensure victory. Customized Parts for Individual Battle Styles
Customize Armored Core parts to suit a large variety of playstyles. Selecting different parts not only changes the mech’s attacks, but also directly affects its movement and battle style, so each mission can be approached with a unique mech strategy. Thrilling Boss Battles
Deploy a wide variety of offensive and defensive tactics at close and long range to take down powerful enemy bosses.

[This article originally appeared on Xbox Wire]

Xbox Wire

Posts by this account are syndicated from Xbox Wire.

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