BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Review- I Don’t Want to Escape From Crossing Fate
BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle is the latest game from Arc System Works and pits characters from the BlazBlue, Persona, Under Night, and RWBY franchises against one another in 2v2 fights that are fast paced and filled with flash and fanservice.
CrossTag’s fighting mechanics offer both simple and advanced ways to play. There are two attacks (light and heavy), followed by a partner change, assist, and crash button. Crash acts as you designated overhead/sweep button. Mashing the light or heavy buttons repeatedly will result in an auto combo, while light and switch gives characters access to a “dragon punch” like motion with invincibility. When you’re down to your last fighter, you can activate “resonance blaze” which allows you to gain extra meter and recover red health. This meter is tied to your partner skill meter, which increases as you use the game’s more complicated mechanics, like crash, active switching, and partner skills. Meter builds quickly, allowing matches to be filled with super and ex moves. Characters also do a lot of damage, allowing them to die with around two to three moderately long combos. Likewise, the frequency of assists being used means that happy birthdays are a very real consequence for being careless. While this may sound intimidating, the structure of the game’s fighting style means that the game is accessible to most all who play it, regardless of player skill or franchise knowledge. My only gripe with combat is that you can’t remap supers, as they’re the same button combination as grabs.
Cross Tag plays the most like BlazBlue, but the other franchises still feel right at home in this environment. Persona characters still retain their Persona attacks, albeit the cards have been dropped for the character taking damage when their persona is hit. Undernight characters retain their core gameplay (though things like drive actions have been removed). RWBY characters are completely new, and their movesets and personalities feel moderately well lifted from the show, despite it feeling that their most basic traits (Blake’s quietness, Ruby’s love of weapons, and Weiss’ stuck up nature) were the main thing taken over character wise. It never feels that a franchise is being betrayed, or written incorrectly. Rather, it feels a big dumb fun adventure. This is exemplified in Cross Tag’s story.
The story mode of BBCTB is broken up into multiple campaigns, with each focusing on a different franchise. A mysterious voice transports the characters into an amalgamation of their different worlds, granting each franchise leader a keystone that they’ll need to use to get back home, fighting in tag battles along the way to the goal. It’s a standard enough plotline that, while lacking depth, does it’s job well enough to justify fights and get a few fun character interactions (the Persona 4 story being a standout favorite).
Online consist of ranked, casual, and lobby matches with solid netplay across both the PS4 and Switch versions of the game. Lobbies allow you to wander a circular ring filled with other player’s with characters from the main roster, and interact, chat, and take on one another at match terminals. It’s a fun, friendly way to experience the online environment. Ranked matches use a point system to calculate player rank, with standard matchmaking options for connection and rank type. During offline versus, the switch joy cons work well.
Overall, BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle is a fun fighting game that creates a middle ground between simplicity and depth. While the story mode is nothing special, there’s still fun to be had with It in seeing how character’s have been transferred over and the specific interactions with characters from the other franchises they encounter. With fun combat mechanics and a colorful cast, Cross Tag is a game that shouldn’t be missed by fans of any series represented.