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While it may not be the best game of its kind, or the prettiest, Vanguard Bandits is a very unique game. If you're a TRPG fan, and you're sick of the conformity of the genre, pick it up right now, and get a breath of fresh air.
The only reason not to get Vanguard Bandits would be if you can't stand strategy type games at all. The story has a wide variety of emotions, from sappy love stories to vile deception, witty humor to angry insults. The characters have excellent development, and smashing up hundreds of mechanical ATACs on the path to victory doesn't feel too bad either. Due to the number of missions, and the length of play, I wouldn't recommend simply renting the game, unless you like teasing yourself. Just do yourself a favor, and buy it right now. You won't regret it.
While it hasn't aged superbly in all respects, Working Designs chose wisely in bringing a game that otherwise would have been even less remembered across the Pacific. It features interesting tactical scenarios that will remain investing for years to come, while its cumbersome menus are not so arduous as to render the product undesirable. The PS1 era and me have a sometimes-rocky relationship, but I can still see why people would enjoy this game.
L'histoire, d'après PA, est très intéressante à force d'y jouer. Mais je ne conseillerais pas un titre aussi décevant, même si le scénario est correct passé plusieurs heures de jeu.
Not even Working Designs' loving attention to minite detail can hide the average-at-best strategy RPG elements of "Vanguard Bandits". If you dig the genre though (and have already gotten your "Tactics" and "Front Mission" jollies), the $20 asking price ain't too bad a price to pay for dozens of missions, five endings and one hell of a deep plot.
Originally titled Epica Stella and then Detonator Gauntlet, Vanguard Bandits is the perfect example of a new release that is actually a little treasure from the past. This battlefield strategy RPG, which is set on a continent of warring countries, isn't for everyone, but if you're a strategy RPG fan that isn't too fussy about graphics, you'll be pleased. According to the game's thick, full-color instruction booklet, which has become a Working Designs staple, the company stumbled across the game "during [its] licensing of Vasteel way back in the days of the TurboGrafx-CD system." The game often shows its age, especially graphically, but never feels antique; what it lacks in visual style it makes up with charm.
Graphically, VB is plain but pretty, and while the mech designs are interesting, there's little sense of scale, so they look more like knights in armor than giant robots. Combat is much easier to get into than Final Fantasy Tactics, but the battles as a whole are also far less challenging. There is, however, a branching storyline, and you'll have to play the game through several times before you get to see all 56 missions and each of the five endings. Overall, Vanguard Bandits does a few things will, and everything else well enough to make a game that's fun, if not fantastic.