God Eater 3 review for PS4, PC

Platform: PS4
Also On: PC
Publisher: Bandai Namco
Developer: Bandai Namco
Medium: Blu-ray
Players: 1-8
Online: Yes

I?m glad that a game like God Eater exists as a suitable alternative to Monster Hunter, despite enjoying the long-running Capcom series more. God Eater is just different enough to feel unique, with quick character action, short battles with giant monsters, and stripped down (but not in a bad way) gathering/crafting mechanics. God Eater 3 is no exception, to the point that despite having a few new mechanics and being the first fully fledged console-only release for the series, it?s very much in line with the games that have preceded it.

That?s a good thing if you already know you dig God Eater, but a little less so if you?ve tried the series and haven?t been hooked. If you?re new then strap in. God Eater 3 isn?t hard to understand on the surface, but can be a bit of a slog on the story side, and the difficulty takes a little too long to ramp up. God Eater 3 also doesn?t pace its tutorials out very well, front-loading the game with explanations and short trial missions that teach you core mechanics, but you rarely feel the need to utilize those skills early on. Instead, the challenge comes later, at a point where I found myself half-forgetting the mechanics taught earlier.

Outside of those issues, there is fun to be had with God Eater 3. It resembles Monster Hunter via the gameplay loop of wrecking powerful, giant monsters, and then looting them for goods used in crafting ridiculous weapons. However, the comparisons between the two series generally stops there. While Monster Hunter is as much about the hunt as it is about the combat, God Eater 3 is almost pure combat. Your created character moves faster, has a lot of mobility options, and the maps are relatively small. Even when a weakened Aragami (the monsters of God Eater) retreats, they don?t go far and aren?t hard to find. Most early missions are somewhere in the range of 5 to 7 minutes long, and even late game missions won?t extend much past 10 to 15 minutes. Part of that likely comes from the old portable origins of the series, but the brisk mission times are still appreciated here.

When you really start to get into the swing of combat, God Eater 3 is at its best. Being able to air dive, block, power up your weapon by ?devouring? the monster you?re fighting, and chaining together impressive combos never gets old. The help you get from your AI controlled companions in battle is actually pretty good, and you don?t need to manage much more than trigger the Engage command when it pops up, allowing you to share buffs between party members. When you encounter missions featuring multiple tough Aragami at once God Eater 3 can become hectic, sure, but that edge-of-your-seat action delivers a fantastic feeling of accomplishment once you come out on top.

I can?t recommend God Eater 3 to everyone, you?ve got to be able to put up with a certain amount of dry exposition, lackluster VA line reading, a whole host of menus, and some obtuse crafting mechanics. But if you think you can either get past that or aren?t opposed to diving in and reading up on mechanics via in-game tutorials or through other resources, there?s a decent-to-great game here. Obviously if you already enjoy God Eater as a series, then I?d say God Eater 3 is a no-brainer for you. But for everyone else, if you have the option to try before you buy, I?d do that first, just to see if God Eater is a series you?ll enjoy.

Note: Bandai Namco provided us with a God Eater 3 PS4 retail copy for review purposes

Grade: B