So when GigaBash’s reveal trailer showed up a while back I was understandably excited.
In short? It’s a four-player brawler where a quartet of colossal beasts (and machines) smash seven shades out of each other and perform earth-shattering smackdowns on the rubble of a populated city.
GigaBash Review (PS5) – A Delightfully Silly Multiplayer Brawler That Captures The Hearts Of A Bygone Era Of Monster Movies
Getting The Important Stuff Right
Played on semi-isometric arenas, GigaBash is a radioactive fusion of classic monster brawler War of the Monsters, Power Stone, and Smash Bros.
Some influences are felt more keenly than others of course, and at first glance, GigaBash owes a lot to the Capcom-published fighter from the PlayStation 2 era.
It’s big, flashy, and cartoonish, with its violence, and all-in for destructive entertainment with brains checked in at the door.
All action and no metaphor might well be the issue with many modern Godzilla and Kong adaptations, but it’s far less of an issue for a video game where the smashy stuff is pretty much the point.
The important thing GigaBash captures is the ludicrousness of the monster movie genre in its golden age.
There’s a story mode that gives each titanic fighter their own backstory, and they all have the endearingly goofy charm of the kajiu-centric films of the 60s and 70s.
It’s bare bones stuff, unsurprisingly, but it does serve to make each creature feel important in their own right.
Every Monster Is Special
The sense of awe in what they are and what they can do is conveyed beautifully, and gives a little flavor in choosing your gargantuan brawler.
That’s especially handy because it makes the sillier-looking monsters as worthy as the cool-looking ones when you are coerced into learning more about what they do.
That puffball of a Yeti Gigabash has on the roster might look stupidly cute, but its rolling snowball attack makes it a bloody badass in any fight.
Combat is very arcade-orientated. A few buttons do a lot, with alt moves generally coming from context changes such as jumping before attacking or holding down the attack button.
As such, GigaBash is remarkably easy to fool around with, yet still holds a sliver of tactical depth.
The aforementioned story mode also acts as a welcome tutorial of sorts (there’s also a bog standard tutorial though if you want things explained in short order), pitting you against greater and greater challenges, whilst getting you comfortable with the roster.
It’s a satisfyingly chunky move-set too. It doesn’t matter if it’s ripping up trees to turn a Voltron knockoff into a home run ball, smashing armor-clad lizards into a wall of wooden spikes, or simply piledriving a Yeti into an office building.
GigaBash just gets that the gleeful nature of causing chaos on a citywide level is a wondrous allure.
By battering foes and picking up glowing orbs dotted about the place, monsters can be charged up into even larger forms for a period of time, usually causing all those now smaller than you to flee in terror.
While story mode does give at least some reason for solo flyers to check GigaBash out, the point of it is absolutely in the madness of multiplayer.
In truth, it’s where this game will live or die in the modern age because the chances of having four folks in the same room to duke it out are not as high as they once were.
Online games very much relie on a steady, continuous player count, which even the greatest multiplayer games can struggle to keep a hold of.
I’m already a tad worried about the online side of things, given I struggled to get a game with more than one human being on multiple occasions.
Luckily, I have kids and extra controllers, so I was able to really test how accessible GigaBash is.
It’s basically a lot of fun. Whilst there is an element of skill to getting it right, this is a brawler first, and fighter second.
It’s a game that consistently rewards the thunderous clash of titans as they decimate cities to settle unspoken beefs.
I always find the sign of a good multiplayer game for families is one that has the kids giggling at every move they perform, and let me tell you, GigaBash got its fair share of chuckles.
It’s GigaBash-ing Time
There’s no great surprise to GigaBash. It plays almost exactly how I hoped it would, and features a really fun roster of big gits to wallop and be walloped by.
That does mean it merely satisfies when it might have done better to exceed expectations.
Still, I think back to the 2014 Godzilla game that was inherently awful, but I fell in love with it because there simply wasn’t anything quite like it out there at the time, and I kinda missed that.
GigaBash may not have that license and the history it brought to the table, but it sure does capture the essence of the Showa and Hesei eras of that franchise.
Think of it as the Gamera of kaiju brawlers. It’s absolutely a knockoff of something more famous, but it stiil knows how to pull of the same moves…sometimes even better than the original.
GigaBash is now available on PS5 and PS4.
Review code kindly provided by publisher.