Another example of "went in blind" and...uh...I'm not entirely sure where to start. The obvious is that I'm not the intended audience, but still - I was curious to know what this game's gameplay is about. Theme notwithstanding - what do you actually do in the game?
So, the game is part "pet sim" but mostly it's an "action" game? This sounds really weird. It's not super adrenaline reflexes based action, but you basically have to control a horse (riding) in real time on a track (follow the trail accurately) or in an obstacle course (follow the guides for where to go next, and jump at the right moment). The 3rd mini-game (that I played, perhaps there are more later on?) is basically a pattern matching game where you see a symbol on the top screen and then need to tap on its equivalent in the bottom screen as quickly as possible. This one is dressage - where horses to fancy tricks like walk sideways and such. I don't really know much about horses and riding and all that to be fair.
So, the game is basically a "horse riding" sim where you participate in events to earn money, which lets you buy better/faster horses so you can continue participating. There might be more to it than just this - but that's at least as far as I got (played in 3 tournaments, each with 3 events corresponding to the mini-games I described earlier). You can also groom your horse so that it's loyalty increases (more hearts!). I'm not entirely sure how this plays out in the game - I only played with two horses (starter + faster one purchased later) and... I'm not sure how your horse's performance changes? Maybe it doesn't? Speed definitely makes a difference - as I saw from getting a faster horse and then really getting a lead on my opponents (whom you never see - only names on a leaderboard).
Other than that you can spend money on accessories for the horse and different colored saddles and tack. As far as I can tell none of these have an impact on gameplay (there's no +1 speed saddle, which makes sense). For a hot minute I thought this might have been a driving game! ("drive a horse" and then upgrade it). But all you really seem to do is buy new horses - which feels a bit sad to me - like I got rid of slow-poke 'cause it's slow!
The game is also entirely stylus-driven, which awkwardly includes the jumping that I was never able to get to work right (you're supposed to double tap). That is, until I discovered you could also press the right trigger (R1) and have the horse jump. THEN, it works fine. Sigh.
As I was playing I realized that - wow, there might not be another generation of games designed around the use of a stylus (rather than finger) and I thought that was a bit sad. Game devs had to get up to speed on stylus-for-input only for that to be mostly gone by the time the 3DS rolled away...perhaps by that point most people had given up? Obviously the finger replaced the stylus, but the experience is quite different!
I've just finished the "shoot out in the tower that was going to get demolished" mission trying to save "me mum". The mission right before that was mostly looking at things so it was a nice break...and I had to stop playing because I was getting too sweaty.
The controls are still really wonky at times (using controller not move controllers) but, for the most part they do the trick. What I'm starting to get annoyed by is the main character - I really don't like him as he's a bit of a... twat?...a silent protagonist might have been better for me rather than an annoying gangster/soldier type.
The story is getting a bit more interesting - especially since it's being presented out of chronological order. I'm being interrogated by a CIA agent - and then play missions he's asked about (so, tell me what happened at X), but NOW we're going to be working together! Something about a rival gangster who seems suddenly too well funded and organized as well as revenge for killing my dad and (as of the last mission), my mum as well!
I've gone into this game completely blind having no real idea what it's about other than WWII. I was a bit worried that it might be a hex 'n chit style wargame that would be interesting on paper but unplayable in practice (the interface being the biggest issue followed by a convoluted and lengthy system of rules). I was not set at ease by the fact that there are 6 separate tutorials - 3 strategic and 3 tactical you need to do before I think it makes any sense to even get started. Maybe. I think I did 4 of them and then decided to do the first mission.
I got impatient because, from the tutorials, I was getting the sense that this game might be like Advance Wars (bases to build troops, healing/repairs, turn-based) but with a bit more depth (groups of units together get bonuses depending on which units are in the group). And...so far I haven't had much luck (only played 2 missions) because I haven't run into the unit creating part that I enjoy...the first two missions still feel a little like tutorials (though I did lose one) so we'll see?
The back of the box says there are 20 missions so...perhaps the latter ones get really long and involved?
Oh - the game is a WWII pacific fleet game with subs, and destroyers and all that stuff. I think it's neat that you can (should?!) create different fleets with different ship types and so on...but strangely the battles are in real-time! I'm not sure how to play these well other than paying attention and triggering a special attack when it comes online, but other than that I just watch things play out? So, there's a rock-paper-scissors style relationship between certain ships. I've also just noticed the game has a manual - perhaps I'll read it to refresh stuff from the tutorial...there are lots of different ship types and I'm not sure I'll be able to keep them all straight..
I wonder how weird/strange it is to come into contact/knowledge of an IP (in this case "Generator Rex") via a videogame rather than it's main media (TV show, I think). Part of me gets the sense that Generator Rex is a "knock off" in the sense that Ben10 was really popular so someone said "hey, we need something like that". In Ben10 (which I think I also know from the game and possibly commercials) the character turns into "monsters" and does whatever his heroic thing is. In this game Rex can turn parts of his limbs into "machines" - for examples his arms into clobbering things. His feet into robot boots and the like.
The game is basically a brawler where you can tap the touch screen to switch between different weapons and then clobber enemies. There's also a bit of a progression because you earn orange points (they have a name, I just don't remember it) to upgrade. You can upgrade each of the weapons three times as well as your health bar and a super power bar. I rarely use the super power - but it's depleted when you activate some special weapons (Omega weapons?) of which there are three but you spend most of the game with them unavailable.
The game is ALMOST good. It's so close! The difficulty curve isn't that smooth - most of the regular combat is not too hard but some of the bosses see a significant spike. And there are lots of bosses. I'm 8/10 of the way through the game at this point and starting to get a bit frustrated because of the difficulty curve, but mostly because the brawling controls don't quite flow. It's easy to get stuck in a position where enemies basically juggle you to death which is annoying. I've gotten better at dealing with it, but still. Perhaps I should make more use of the Omega weapons? Also, there's a bit of a delay/lack of recognition when you use the touch screen to swap weapons which makes it annoying in that you might want to switch weapons (due to enemy type) but the time it takes for the switch to happen (because it didn't register the screen tap, or I frantically tapped twice and it selects/unselects/selects) and by then the monster is on me... Sigh.
There is plenty of variety in the locations which is neat and there is also some variety in gameplay - from freefall (and dodge debris in the air), to shoot stuff at the top of the screen, touchscreen puzzles (connect lines to energy ball does a certain path). I mean, it's a "fine" game - just a bit short of being really fun and engaging for me. Obviously I'm not engaged with the story, characters, lore, etc. I have no idea what role the game plays in the show and there are obvious references to enemies and allies that are well-known. But overall, I'm pretty meh.