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"We do not intend to include any pay-to-win elements," Gundam Evolution developers discuss monetization, esports, and the future of the game

Gundam Evolution's Producer and Battle Director spoke to Sportskeeda about the future of their game (Image via Bandai Namco)
Gundam Evolution's Producer and Battle Director spoke to Sportskeeda about the future of their game (Image via Bandai Namco)

Gundam Evolution recently held a network test for PC and has officially begun the latest network test for consoles. As the game’s development continues, players have a chance to get their hands on the upcoming free-to-play hero shooter to see how it plays across a variety of systems and internet connections.

In a recent interaction with Sportskeeda, Gundam Evolution’s Kazuya Maruyama (Producer) and Ryota Hogaki (Battle Director) spoke with Jason Parker about their upcoming title. They discussed monetization if they are going to organize mobile suits and the potential for esports in their game.

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Gundam Evolution talks about the feedback after the PC Network Test

Q: Thank you for taking the time to speak with us about Gundam Evolution. First off, what was the general feedback received about the game after the PC Network Test?

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Bandai Namco: I am very relieved that we were able to successfully complete the scheduled testing without any interruptions over the five days in Japan, the US and Canada. This was the first time we had the opportunity to have players in North America actually play the game.

We were very pleased to see that they received this game even more positively than we had ever imagined, as well as the fact that they were very enthusiastic about playing the game. We could visually see their excitement through the post-test surveys, and once again we are very grateful to all the players who took their time to participate.


Q: One thing I noticed after spending time in the game, is that certain mobile suits do incredible amounts of damage compared to others. Are there any balancing issues you feel need to be worked on?

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Bandai Namco: Some mobile suits really stood out beyond our expectations, while others did not work as they were originally intended to. I have already mentioned this in our developer blog on the official GUNDAM EVOLUTION website, but we plan to make some adjustments to the Gundam Barbatos, ∀Gundam and Marasai [UC].

And of course we will be working on some of the units that have not been revealed yet.


Q: There was a nice variety when it came to mobile suits in Gundam Evolution. How far ahead has the development team thought when it comes to future additions to the game?

Bandai Namco: We have been working for some time to develop the types of units that can be made available in the game and will continue to add more after launch, but we don't want to simply add new units randomly because it is important to pick mobile suits carefully for game balance and to foster a great, fun experience for all players. Stay tuned for more details on the specifics!


Q: Has there been any talk of esports support from Bandai Namco when it comes to Gundam Evolution?

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Bandai Namco: Yes, we have! We have been developing this game with a competitive nature in mind from the very beginning. Although we want to expand this game in the best way for communities in each region, we would like to have more time to work out the details here.


Q: Are there any plans to sort the mobile suits in Gundam Evolution by class? EG: mobile suits that can heal listed as support, heavier suits with shield/defensive abilities as tanks, etc?

Bandai Namco: As this game is within the team shooter genre, we certainly want players to help each other as a team, and we also want to highlight the unique characteristics of each mobile suit, so it is important to strategize in various roles in the game, but in a different sense from the existing competitive shooters.

Instead of having fixed roles, we want to allow players to consider multiple options when choosing a unit.

For example, we dare to aim for all units to be capable of doing a certain amount of damage. We also did not create units that specialize in support, but instead applied an auto-repair function to all units, which automatically heals if the opposing team does not attack for a certain period.

The reason for this is because we want to respond to the need to play with the mobile suits of your choice whenever possible, rather than choosing units based on combat conditions just because it is a role that needs to be filled.

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Needless to say, there will be advantageous and disadvantageous units depending on the combat situation, who you are fighting against, maps, rules, etc., but we aim for a situation where this changes from time to time and the same unit can achieve a certain level of success in battle.


Q: I know it may be too early to tell, but when the game launches, how many mobile suits are players going to have access to?

Bandai Namco: This network test implemented 12 initial units, plus two additional units - Gundam Exia and Marasai [UC]. At launch, we plan to add more different types of additional units. However, we cannot give you specific numbers or details yet. We will make an announcement when the time comes so please stay tuned!


Q: One very important topic of discussion is no doubt going to be monetization. As a free-to-play game, people always worry about pay-to-win mechanics (damage buffs, etc). Is that something fans will have to worry about?

📕During the #GUNDAMEVOLUTION Console Closed Network Test, players can level up using "Season Pass EXP" earned by playing Ranked Matches. Also, if you clear the Daily Challenge, you will be able to earn even more Season Pass EXP! Be sure to check it out! #GUNEVO #PLAYGUNEVO https://t.co/cijZVH5duw

Bandai Namco: We understand that everyone is very interested and concerned about that. As we have already stated, we do not intend to include any pay-to-win elements from either Season Passes or Supply Pods. We will also be offering two ways to open up additional units (aside from the initial units) – either by unlocking by points earned through continuous play or by purchasing them to unlock them immediately.


Q: How will the item capsules work in Gundam Evolution? Will they be able to be farmed without spending money?

Bandai Namco: There will of course be opportunities to obtain Supply Pods at no charge. Some other items will also be available in the Season Pass at no cost.


Q: Can players look forward to more modes in Gundam Evolution, such as Team Deathmatch mode?

Bandai Namco: At the time of launch, we do not want to necessarily add any more game modes than the current three. This is because we want players to get to know the game first, and we certainly don't want to make them feel behind and distract them from learning. However, we will of course consider adding more modes after launch.


Q: Will players have access to casual matchups or custom lobbies, or will the game be only ranked?

🚨Attention all new #GUNDAMEVOLUTION players! For the Console CNT, Exia & Marasai are premium units that must be unlocked before you can use them. From the Main Menu, select "Player" & then select "Present Box" to open your gift of Capital Points to unlock them right away! https://t.co/jrQpZswPnO

Bandai Namco: Casual matches were intentionally not implemented in the previous network test, but you can rest assured that they will be implemented at launch as they were in the test carried out in Japan prior to that. We are considering the addition of custom matches so please keep your eyes peeled for further news.


Gundam Evolution's console Network Test is currently available on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5, from today until June 28, 2022. Please read our review of the PC Network Test here.

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Edited by Saman
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