On June 4th, Namco Bandai revealed a teaser trailer for Super Robot Wars V, the newest entry in the turn based strategy franchise and part of the celebration for the 25th anniversary of the franchise. You can view the first teaser trailer it below, and you can find the list of confirmed series in the video description.
In the following hours, plenty of information has been floating around the internet, both true and false. Some are unsure what they need to know in order to enjoy the series. So I've written up this small blog in order to help clarify that information for those that don't know alot about the series, as well as for veterans who may not be fully in the loop.
Super Robot Wars V will come out on the PS4 and PS Vita. Since both consoles are not region locked, that means you'll be able to import them and play them on the systems you already own with no hassle. Granted, there might be some problems if any dlc comes out, but we don't know that yet.
I've been seeing some confusion around the net, and on Destructoid's Discord, so I'll clear this up first. The 'V' does not stand for 'Five', it stands for Voyage. Often times, that name often stands for something relevant to the plot of the game. This isn't the first time that a SRW game features a letter in the title that stands for something. Outside of that, there's not much more I can really tell you about the name without knowing more about the plot of the game.
This is a major moment for the franchise. For 25 years the franchise has been mainly available in Japanese, with only three entries making their way over exclusively to North America, which only featured original characters. This is the first time a licensed entry to have an english translation. I can understand that some on the fence may be worried about the quality of the translation, which is understandable. For those worried, you can wait. SRW V doesn't come out until 2017, while Moon Dwellers, which is a game that features only original characters, from previous games and new ones, will have an english translation as well. It will be coming out in June 30th. We will be finding out then what the english translation is like, so if you're unsure about that or afraid the quality is not up to par, then wait.
With Super Robot Wars V, the series Space Battleship Yamato 2199 is making it's debut. This is a major landmark in the series, as it's the first non-mecha space opera series to be included. Should it be positively received, it could mean more like it in the future. A comparable moment in the series would be the inclusion of Tekkaman Blade in Super Robot Wars J on the GBA opening the door for series focused around powered armor. It doesn't necessarily mean that the series will take over the plot either.
This is important, as it was scaring some people away from it. You do not need to have seen the series involved to enjoy it. Super Robot Wars often have a central, original plot that drives the game, with altered events from the series included taking part along the way. This allows you to witness important characterization and events as they happens, and some events and characterizations, which is often the case for Shinji from Evangelion, may be changed due to 'What if x people were here during x event'. Does it increase enjoyment? Yes. Is it mandatory? No.
However, I will note, Super Robot Wars loves to fix Gundam SEED and SEED: Destiny to the point where fans and the VAs themselves prefer the SRW versions. Don't worry about it's inclusion, they'll fix it again. In addition, Shin Mazinger Z and Shin Mazinger Zero are two different series, and I don't know how that will be handled, although I'm hearing some rumours floating around the storylines will be merged somehow. I would heavily recommend at least learning a bit about Shin Mazinger Z in the off chance it starts mid/post plot.
The series is notorious for secret content, achieved through points systems and objectives that are not visible to the player. Often times, this content is easier to access on the second playthrough, but on the first playthrough it is a pain in the dick. If you import a copy, I would suggest waiting at least a month or so, in order for people to determine how to achieve these secrets if you absolutely care. These secrets can include avoiding deaths of certain characters, secret units and pilots, extra gear and money, alternate mission paths.
The games generally have a healthy amount of content. A large number of untis, generally as many missions as the three paths of Fates combined, alternate paths, secrets, optional objectives, with sub system out the door. You are getting a fair amount for your dollar. If you want to know more about the games, and how one of the more recent entries, Z3, stacks up compared to Fire Emblem, you can read my in progress blog series on the matter here.
That's the core basics of what you need to know about Super Robot Wars V, and why it's exciting to newcomers to the series and veterans such as myself. Hopefully you'll all join me, and import the game when it comes out and give it the chance it deserves.