Digimon gaming fans have had it rough. It’s been years since they got a Digimon game that was actually released outside of Japan but instead of getting their hands on titles like Digimon World Re:Digitize, they got what seems like a game that would have been barely acceptable on the Gamecube.
The Story Mode in Digimon All-Star Rumble is a rather uninteresting one. It starts off with the Digimon being really bored of how peaceful life has been lately, how they haven’t fought any enemies in a long time and that they really miss the feeling of Digivolving.
In order to Digivolve, they need combat experience but with their world being at peace there were no battles to take part in. The Digimon came up with the concept of hosting a Digimon Evolution Tournament for the purpose of Digivolving and to see who is the strongest.
In the story you’ll be walking around various levels and in the end battle a Digimon (which you unlock after you win) in order to reach the next point. Navigating through the levels can be very awkward and the fact that the camera moves on its own doesn’t really make the experience any better. The story mode for each character is mostly the same so if you played through it once then for the most part you aren’t missing much.
You can make your Digimon stronger in battle by equipping DigiCards, which have special abilities that add attack, defense, health, EP, SP and more. You can find a few hidden in the story mode or purchase them in Collection Mode.
Even after you get sick of playing the story mode (especially once you reach the last level) you can head over to training mode to practice learning each Digimon’s moves. Or you can go to Battle Mode where you can play with up to four players. When I played this game with a few buddies of mine to see what they thought of it, it only served as a small distraction and after a couple of battles we put our controllers down and played something else.
As for any other modes, that’s it. There’s really no other gameplay content to speak of, which is a letdown since it really hinders replayability.
Another gripe I had about the game is that the controls are very simple with very little depth. You have three attacks buttons and there are some combos you can pull off in the game but for the most part you’ll be mashing circle or square a lot. Once you get enough attacks in, you’ll be able to Digivolve by pressing both L1 and R1.
As for the game’s graphics, they’re not bad, just passable, but could be a lot better especially considering that the game cost $39.99. The game’s music, however, is pretty fitting for the most part and I enjoyed a lot of the tracks I heard throughout my time with story mode.
I honestly can’t see how Digimon fans would enjoy Digimon All-Star Rumble. The story mode is very bland and half baked, the fighting is simplistic to the point of boredom, you can’t lock onto your opponent and there are only twelve characters to choose from. Not to mention there’s no online mode so most of its replay value went down the drain.
Hopefully this wasn’t Bandai Namco’s way of seeing how loyal the Digimon fanbase is, because this is definitely a step in the wrong direction.