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Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon Review

Official Score

Overall - 90%


Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon is an absolutely thrilling game, providing a hefty amount of challenge and the tools needed to grow and overcome any threats. Take up this call from Handler Walter - he’s got a new job for you.

User Rating: 4.1 ( 1 votes)

After a decade between entries (and plenty of Soulslikes in the interim), mechs are back on the menu with the release of FromSoftware and Bandai Namco’s Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon. There’s plenty of firepower at one’s disposal; should players set out to master it?

Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon Review

Stepping into the shoes of one of the titular Armored Cores, players will quickly get to know mercenary 621. Led by Handler Walter, they touch down on the planet Rubicon, steal the callsign Raven from a junked Armored Core, and take on mercenary missions from the different factions stationed on the planet. Along the way, players will get a chance to learn about ALLMIND and Coral, and partake in some good ol’ fashioned destruction along the way.

These missions are no walks in the park either; larger-than-life STRIDER mechs with freakin’ laser beams, autonomous BALTEUS and SMART CLEANER crafts that lay on the fire thick, and countless MT mooks always pose a threat. However, players have the tools for the job; one can boost out of danger’s way (albeit tied to a meter), limited AP packs serve provide additional health and serve as the games’ Estus Flasks, and melee attacks let players get up close and personal – the best way to deal massive damage.

If anything, the flow of the game forces players to be aware of their surroundings at all times; if one is stationary, they are doing it wrong. While there are multiple meters to manage (each with their own cooldowns), everything is intuitive and becomes second nature. The title does not hesitate to run you through the school of hard knocks – this is a FromSoftware game after all – but it does give you the tools you need to grow and succeed. For that, we can truly appreciate what Armored Core VI brings to the table – it truly channels the PlayStation 2 legends of old.

Don’t confuse Armored Core VI with Elden Ring or Dark Souls, however; this title paves its own path. While there is a stagger functionality, meter management, and a steep difficulty curve, this game focuses solely on the action. Waypoints and enemy threats are clearly highlighted, there is constant guidance from the Handler Walker, and there are even checkpoints; that’s enough to make any Dark Souls fan faint!

However, Armored Core VI manages to be tough but fair. While the control scheme takes some getting used to, even the base loadout gives players the tools for the job to successfully take on any threats that may stand in their way. One can gradually gain additional funds throughout play to customize their Armored Core to their liking (weight and other factors notwithstanding), so they can focus on offense, defense, or a balance between the two. This freedom is liberating, and it makes sure that one’s experience in the title is catered to their liking. There are even ways to access AC loadouts from others; just the thing for those looking for some guidance from friends.

While the title is broken down into a series of different missions, Armored Core VI manages to be engaging throughout its runtime. Some missions are fairly short affairs, but then Operations with multiple components and allies will pop up that require the proper strategies. This is on top of decisions players will make, which change how things play out. This is far from a mindless game, and the fact that players will always be on their toes (even though enemies quickly state you are not a rookie) keeps things lively.

Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon is an absolutely thrilling game, providing a hefty amount of challenge and the tools needed to grow and overcome any threats. Take up this call from Handler Walter – he’s got a new job for you.

This review of Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon was done on the PC. The game was purchased digitally.
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Casey Scheld

Drawn to the underground side of gaming, Casey helps the lesser known heroes of video games. If you’ve never heard of it, he’s mastered it.
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