Game Freak fans are going to get a chance to see another game from the developer that isn’t related to Pokemon soon. Giga Wrecker Alt is coming to consoles. It seems like something of a director’s cut of the original PC game. But, those who missed out on it originally may have some questions. What’s going on? Why did Game Freak make this game? Which version do I need? Let’s see if we can help.
What is Giga Wrecker?
Giga Wrecker is an action game with some very mild Metroidvania elements. It follows a young woman named Reika, who was nearly killed by biomechanical monsters. A doctor who is essentially a mad scientist saved her, but at the cost of some of her humanity. She is now a cyborg with the ability to gather up the nanomachines from the robotic enemies around her. She then uses the debris to attack or solve physics-based puzzles. (It’s interesting!)
The game came to be, thanks to Game Freak’s Gear Project. As noted by Game Freak Game Director Masayuki Onoue on PlayStation Blog, the studio has a Gear Project to help develop new IP in-house. People submit ideas, and Giga Wrecker was one that ended up being brought to life. In August 2016, it launched on Steam Early Access. People were able to play along and see how it grew until its February 2017 debut.
Even after launch, the PC version of Giga Wrecker has received some updates. A boss rush mode appeared in June 2017, followed by additional language support in December 2017.
Which version of Giga Wrecker should I play?
The knee-jerk reaction in a situation like this might be to immediately pick Giga Wrecker Alt up on the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. After all, it is the newest version. However, the PC version still might be worth your time. Especially since we still don’t know everything about the console release.
Giga Wrecker on PCs is the most basic version of the release. You have the main campaign and a level editor to create new levels. The translation is not great. It is much better than it was in Early Access, but there are still plenty of grammatical issues. It also hasn’t received any major content updates since December 2017. An additional update was teased and someone with Game Freak posted on the Steam forums promising an update back in July 2018, but there has been no word on one since then.
Giga Wrecker Alt on consoles is the new and snazzier version. The basic campaign is there. However, it also has a companion character who can follow and aid Reika in some of the more challenging areas, an Ironman difficulty level and 20 more puzzle stages. Most importantly, it does have an improved localization. However, we don’t know if it will have the level editor from the PC version of the game.
From experience, Giga Wrecker is the sort of game where the experience matters most. Going through its puzzles, following Reika’s skill trees and completing all of the challenges are what matters the most. The story is… fine. It isn’t terrible and there are some great character designs, but it isn’t the primary focus. Someone who wants the game immediately, at a lower price, and might see themselves making levels would likely be fine with the current release. However, if you see yourself wanting to really take on more puzzles and replay it, the Giga Wrecker Alt release with Ironman and the extra stages may be a better idea.
What about the Giga Wrecker level editor?
Hey, that’s right! The PC version of Giga Wrecker that is immediately available has a level editor! Unfortunately, there haven’t been that many contributions from different players. Still, you can visit the game’s Steam Workshop page to find some original levels to play.
That doesn’t mean there aren’t creations worth checking out. Reika’s Requiem is worth a look, as Lukan Peixe went to the trouble of making what is basically an entire extra mini-campaign that is 15 stages long. The Javelin Master stage by IZI Mass focuses on the Debri Javelin ability, forcing you to think about how you can use these spears to progress. If you just want to experience a brief custom level to see how it works, without having to worry about any real challenge from enemies, the Izi Mass Recall Puzzle is a quick way to test your puzzle-solving skills.