It’s a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine, but I love a classic Japanese monster flick like Godzilla, Gamera: Guardian of the Universe and Destroy All Monsters. As there is always a sense of the epic mixed in with a heavy vibe of B-movie joy, plus seeing a huge monster destroy a city never gets old. So when I saw Malaysian indie studio Passion Republic Games were bring GigaBash to the Xbox you better believe I was more than a little interested. This is a kaiju action brawler throwing you and mates in an arena and having you fight out who is the true king of the monsters, though there is also a story mode as well to help you cut your teeth on first.
GigaBash sees each chapter focus on four different monsters: Gorogong, Pipijuras, Woolley, and Thundatross. This not only lets you learn a bit more about them and their back stories, but also gives you time to learn their moves and attacks as well as the core mechanics of the game. Told through animated comic book style cut scenes, it’s a fun pulpy tale that does lean into the genre tropes, but is overall a fun romp with some interesting characters along the way. Completing the story mode chapters will also bag you some goodies like art work and new Kaiju to fight with.
Gameplay wise you’ll find yourself dropped in a number of different arenas based around different locations like a city, oil field and jungle, with each having different hazards of their own to avoid; like lava flow and rivers. Combat is simple to understand but has hidden depth, as it’s all based around heavy and light attacks, as well as grabs and that all powerful special move. Plus if you feel the need you can always grab a building or unlucky vehicle to bring the hurt as well. On top of this you can also power up to your giga form by collecting orbs, which makes you an unbeatable powerhouse. Beware though, your opponents can also unleash this power themselves too. Get a few hits into them whilst in this form and your giga gauge will quickly fill to help you out.
As for the Kaiju (or Titans as GigaBash calls them), there are 10 to pick from/unlock with each having their own feel and vibe; which is a nice touch as well as having a different looking style. Some like Gorogong feel like they have been plucked from the 60s, being a man in a rubber suit complete with seamlines, where as others like Thundatross look like CGI visions from the Pacific Rim era. Visually the game has a nice chunky art style with each Kaiju being full of character and charm and feeling like a lot of love for the source material was part of their crafting. Whereas sound-wise its ok and knows where to ramp things up, but given the inspiration has some truly and epic theme tunes it’s a bit gutting there aren’t any tracks in that vein here. As for issues I had with the game, the biggest on the gameplay front was the camera system which loses the plot in the heat of the battle from time to time and also the overall general scale of things, as it’s a bit odd for example tanks are extremely oversized.
The last issue I have is a bit of an odd one, as for a game based on classic Japanese monster movies there is a DLC add-on that will cost you an extra £8.39 and will add 4 iconic silver screen monsters to the mix. We are talking Gigan, Mechagodzilla, Destoroyah and the legend himself… Godzilla. I am not going to lie it’s an amazing addition to the game, but charging £8.39 on top of the £19.49 for the game is extremely cheeky as it would have been much better come as a full package and just charge £24.99 for it. GigaBash is a solid brawler with a fun core that is a blast with a group of mates, though it has a few rough edges and makes a massive misstep on that DLC front. If you’re a Kaiju fan or just looking to smash up a city or two it’s well worth grabbing.
An Xbox review copy of GigaBash was provided by Passion Republic Games PR team, and it’s out now on Xbox, PC, PlayStation and Switch for around £20.