• Publisher: Capcom
  • Release Date: Jun 19, 2012

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 58 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 58
  2. Negative: 39 out of 58
  1. Jun 28, 2012
    Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor has been crushed by its own zest for innovation. A unlucky and frustating experience.
  2. Jun 22, 2012
    It's a pity that Capcom constricts the new Steel Battalion with Kinect. Without the motion controls this could have been an entertaining mech shooter.
  3. Jun 25, 2012
    Sadly the story of Sergeant Powers will be seen as a failure, which it is, but certainly only of execution.
  4. Jun 25, 2012
    Everything surrounding that core that makes it unbearable.
  5. Oct 17, 2012
    When it is working, Steel Battalion Heavy Armor is an exciting, engaging and immersive game – but to get to the end of the campaign you're going to need to love mechs and Kinect. A lot. The problem is the Kinect experience is a significant detractor to the point of annoyance. If you could just use the control pad it would have been a far better game, even more so if an adapter could have been provided to use the impressive controller from the first game.
  6. Jul 23, 2012
    It's a sad truth to report, but the great ideas of Steel Battalion: Heavy Armour have been laid on some considerably crooked foundations. If anything, it's an indictment of the Kinect's over-promise, as its unresponsive method of control ends up drowning out any potential of its ambitions coming to life in a truly satisfying manner.
  7. Sep 24, 2012
    I applaud Capcom for thinking big with Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor; the experience they tried to create while keeping the price tag down is commendable. But trying and doing are two separate things, and the Kinect-based controls just don't cut the mustard. I remember the first Steel Battalion, and I was eager to see what its next-gen kin could do. Unfortunately, all it did was frustrate me time and again.
  8. Jun 19, 2012
    This motion never works consistently, and the controller itself (which the game says you need to hold, as both movement and firing are done from it) even blocks your hands from the sensor sometimes. This basically means that in the heat of battle, you're putting your hands in front of you back and forth constantly just to see/shoot/move, and go back to view your instruments.
  9. Jul 2, 2012
    If From would have nailed the motion controls down, this would have been one of my favorite games of the year because it's so engaging and fresh. Unfortunately, dealing with the sketchy controls can be wildly frustrating.
  10. Jun 19, 2012
    Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor is the first genuine hardcore Kinect game, something that makes it so much more appealing. Despite some flashy visuals and a hard as nails single-player mode, there's a sense that Heavy Armor would be a little dull if played exclusively with a controller.
  11. Jun 21, 2012
    With its unusual blend of Kinect and controller – of simple missions and complex control – Heavy Armor is a modern rarity: a game designed to be hard work. Whether that translates directly into it being a game for the 'hardcore' is debatable, but From Software has made the best of a bad situation and, aptly, delivered a game that asks you to do exactly the same.
  12. Jun 19, 2012
    Unfortunately, a few bits of clever design simply can't make up for the fact that Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor fails on the most fundamental of levels. First and foremost, a game is meant to be played, and Heavy Armor's unbelievably inept Kinect controls make that a far more difficult prospect than it has any right to be.
  13. Jun 25, 2012
    Would Heavy Armor be a better game if it ditched Kinect and focused purely on the tried-and-tested buttons? In all honesty, no - because without the novelty of raising your arm to pull down a periscope or punch your fleeing co-pilot in the face, this would be a comparatively dull experience.
  14. 70
    In spite of or maybe even because of some of the gameplay barriers, I will remember my experience with it forever. I love it, I hate it and I love hating it.
  15. Aug 11, 2012
    Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor is back eight years after and a generation later, but despite all that has changed in the meantime, the same problems can be found in the experience. Confusing, frustrating to play and never able reach the full potential inherent in this concept.
  16. Jul 20, 2012
    Steel Battalion has some bold ideas that makes me imagine how the games in the future will implement Kinect into them. Unfortunately it's poorly executed, and despite great ambitions and some good parts, the brutal difficulty and the lack of precision (both controller and Kinect) makes this game so bad that it's going to be featured in articles about the worst game this year.
  17. Jun 25, 2012
    Aiming to be the first Kinect game for the hardcore audience, Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor fails miserably at the most fundamental necessity: motion controls that actually work. The story lacks any substance and can't make up for this horrid attempt at creating a follow-up to one of the most-revered mech-shooter series to date.
  18. Jun 19, 2012
    The mech-combat genre isn't overflowing with alternatives, but they do exist. Save yourself the aggravation and pick any one of those. You won't do any worse.
  19. Jun 25, 2012
    Do not buy Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor. If you do, don't play it.
  20. Jun 25, 2012
    The idea of colliding the casual Kinect with the hardcore Mecha game Steel Battalion was interesting. In the end, sadly, it fails miserably because it simply doesn't work: the war you are trying to get through is not the one of the game but the one of getting the controls to work.
  21. Oct 17, 2012
    For what it's worth, if I wanted a simulation of being crammed into a tiny, metal, low-tech claustrophobic coffin while people yell and attempt to kill me repeatedly while I struggle with basic controls, then Heavy Armor offers up quite the war experience. However, that's not what I was looking for, and I suspect that it's not something anyone else is after, either.
  22. Jul 17, 2012
    Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor is a great game when Kinect decides to obey to your actions, but when there are simply too many switches, levers, and buttons in the game for Kinect to decipher what you are actually wanting to do, it just makes the experience extremely aggravating.
  23. Jul 6, 2012
    The truest hardcore game on Kinect has great ideas, but totally abysmal implementation.
  24. Jun 30, 2012
    So called 'hardcore gamers' looked disapprovingly at Microsoft's Kinect. Capcom heard these defying cries and decided to invest a lot of time and money into Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor, to prove once and for all that Kinect is completely useless for controlling deeper games.
  25. Oct 27, 2012
    This could have been a brilliant game. The problem is that it just doesn't work. The Kinect controls work only when they want to, and most of the time they don't, something that ruins an otherwise great experience.
  26. Jul 13, 2012
    Avoid this crap at all costs, it's a crying shame Capcom let this game destroy the Steel Battalion franchise.
  27. Jul 24, 2012
    At some point, From Software must have been aware that their game was literally unplayable, but by then it was too late and they had to grit their teeth and carry it through to its infuriating, fumbling conclusion. [Sept 2012, p.100]
  28. Jun 24, 2012
    It highlights Kinect's flaws rather than showcases its strengths, sending out one, clear, reverberating message – Kinect simply isn't refined enough to unite the hardware with the hardcore.
  29. Jun 19, 2012
    Steel Battalion is riddled with erratic flaws of the most insidious kind, the kind that make you think you have a chance to master them. You don't. You can only endure them, and on a handful of levels, endure them with some friends in limp online co-op. But Steel Battalion is still miserable, even with company, so unless you're a glutton for punishment, it just isn't worth it.
  30. Jun 27, 2012
    The problem is it doesn't work consistently, effectively shattering the sense of immersion each time you reach out and hit the wrong lever or button and then comically try to undo what you just did. There's a potentially entertaining game here, but it's buried underneath the Kinect's infuriating limitations.
User Score

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 88 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 23
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 23
  3. Negative: 17 out of 23
  1. Jun 19, 2012
    Probably the best game ever, and I am not saying that just because I work for Microsoft. From the get go, you a robot in the future/past. YourProbably the best game ever, and I am not saying that just because I work for Microsoft. From the get go, you a robot in the future/past. Your name is withheld, and you get to talk to three major stereotypes as squadmates a lot. You try to get some reading done when you need to recalibrate Kinect. Have I ever mentioned how Kinect is awesome and really works well? Oh, it sure does. Don't let the absolute worse site reviews fool you, this is a solid one out of ten. Full Review »
  2. Jun 19, 2012
    It´s not so bad. It is a hard game, not for children. A combination of joystick and motion control is another experience level thatIt´s not so bad. It is a hard game, not for children. A combination of joystick and motion control is another experience level that everyone should try. Kinect is far away from perfection, but with adequate space and calibration it works well. Full Review »
  3. Jun 19, 2012
    "Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor" is a Mech simulator in a wartime environment, developed by From Software (Chromehounds and Armored Core) and"Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor" is a Mech simulator in a wartime environment, developed by From Software (Chromehounds and Armored Core) and produced by Capcom, being a continuation of the original Xbox game (2003).

    The story takes place in 2082, in a world which since 2020 has lost all the latest technology and computers. In this shattered world, China has become a
    world power, and dominates much of the world on an iron fist, even having dominated the USA. In this future, the technology is based on mechanical elements only, and in battle armors called VT (Vertical Tanks), which are species of tanks with legs for locomotion. You assume the place of the protagonist, Lieutenant Powers, a war hero, and commands a VT in a battle for regain the USA - from the landing on the coast of NY where the game starts.

    The game has great graphics: the CG and openings are the standard of From Software, that is, stunning and realistic graphics that resemble photo realism and showing bloody and realistic battle scenes. The visual in-game is also excellent: the game goes on inside the **** and its crew of 3 men, and the control panels of the VT, and you can put your head out of it.

    The graphics and overall ambiance of the game are Retro, remembering movies and equipment of World War II. The details and movements are fluid and well realistic, and the game has strong colors with a filter that resembles the colors of the colored movies from WWII. The internal environment of the VT is well
    detailed, with multiple instruments, and damage to your TV are shown as having actually taken place.

    The look of the VT is old, resembling WWII tanks mounted on mechanical legs with rough textures and appearances. The same applies to soldier's uniforms, which resemble the past, not the future. The atmosphere inside the VT transmits the sensation of a claustrophobic environment, of a inside of a war tank, for example.

    Audio: The game has dialogue lines extremely well told and acted, conveying the sense of the crew, and the ambient sounds in battle are realistic and differentiated, with various effects like bullets whizzing by, the mechanical walking of the VT and realistic explosions.

    The gameplay is of a battle simulator within this retro Mech: everything happens in 1st person, being the controls a mixture of Kinect with the conventional controller. With the controller, you can move your VT, turn around, and can use weapons with left and right triggers. With Kinect, you commands the Mech, sitted: you slide the screen to the side to visualize your crew, and extending your arms at different points at the screen, on the various existing controls on the inside, that controls the functions of the VT, as to adjust the speed, type of ammunition, fire hatches and enter and exiting the scope, where you see the battlefield and commands the VT.

    If standing up, Powers put the body out of the VT (being an easy target), and can use his hand at eye level to use binoculars. Inside the VT, sited, you use the scope to move and fire in your targets. The missions have objectives, and you should try and achieve them, while trying to stay alive and avoid losing members of the crew: the structural damage to the VT are shown by points in various locations within a diagram of it on the screen, and shots located affect specific things, and may kill members of the VT. At the same time during some parts, you can interact with the crew, greeting them, or holding someone in despair.

    The battles are complex due to the variation of controls, but nothing that we don't get after playing a bit, and a nice tutorial shows the commands before the battle, in a training camp. But the games is not easy, being realistic and we must make strategic decisions, because the shots can destroy your VT quickly.

    The game also features an online mode on Xbox Live, where you and 3 friends over control a battalion of four VT, each commanding one, and that should make the campaign very interesting. In the main game screen, we can see a picture of his battalion showing the names and who is dead, and we customize the appearance and weapons of your VT.

    In short, the game became the 1st Hardcore game to use Kinect, which reacts very well to commands and have realistic visuals, making it the best Kinect game to this point, along with Rise of the Nightmares. The sum of Kinect and Xbox 360 controller works perfectly, I just missed some auxiliary functions for the remaining buttons.

    The game ends up being an excellent choice for people who like games of battles, near simulator style, having a gripping story, excellent graphics and gameplay that, although intuitive, is strategic and difficult at times. If you like serious war games and Mechs simulators, pick up this game - if you don't play the Demo before because this game style isn't for the average gamer.
    Full Review »