While its chess-like movement is an interesting idea, a bare bones feel permeates the overall experience
I’ll admit that the concept of a mech-based roguelike strategy game sucked me in quite easily, combining a bunch of elements I enjoy into a single package. Unfortunately, while there are some bright spots to be found in the game there are also issues. You’ve been tasked with assembling (quite literally) your own army of custom-ish mechs to fend off some nasty alien invaders across a string of battlefields, with each area culminating in a more menacing boss. You’ll need to focus on trying to collect vital resources like energy that will help you create more mechs as well as materials that will allow you to research new components that can be used to design new options for you on the battlefield. There’s some fun to be had in putting together your new designs, though the constant need to keep an eye on the power required to generate one is vital. You’ll ultimately need a mix of more powerful and capable ranged units as well as relatively cheap one-trick ponies to act as cannon fodder so you don’t risk losing one of your more expensive units. This, as well as the movement styles you’ll unlock, is where the similarities to chess come into play. The problem is that the combat tends to be very straight-forward and generally dull, which can make frustrations around the learning curve and mistakes you’ll make understanding what is effective more crippling. Mech Armada has some of the proper elements to deliver a higher-quality experience but unfortunately its general blandness makes it tough for the “just one more run” compulsion to kick in.
Justin Nation, Score: