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Tagline

Azure Striker Gunvolt 3, known as Armed Blue: Gunvolt 3 /// Gibs (蒼き雷霆 ガンヴォルト 鎖環) in Japan, is an upcoming game produced by Inti Creates in development for the Nintendo Switch, and marks the return of the mainline Azure Striker Gunvolt series since 2016's Azure Striker Gunvolt 2.

Gunvolt once again returns as a playable character, with a seemingly overhauled moveset, lacking the Flashfield entirely. Joining him is a new playable character named Kirin, who uses a mix of ranged and melee attacks with her sword and enchanted talismans.

Gameplay

Like Azure Striker Gunvolt 2, the game has two playable characters: Gunvolt, but now includes a newcomer to the series, Kirin.

Gunvolt's playstyle is similar to the preceding games in that he can tag multiple enemies at once, but instead now sends destructive surges of lightning at enemies in bursts (with the bursts seemingly ranging from one to eight based on the number of tags), instead of dealing damage over time like the first two games, and no longer uses the Flashfield. Gunvolt can now apply tags in other manners as well, as his air dash can now "teleport" through enemies, placing a tag in the process. The traditional EP gauge is no longer seen as well, with it being replaced with a system similar to Copen's Bullits, where the lightning surges consume these individual gauges and can be instantly refilled by tapping down twice.

Kirin is melee-focused, but is able to use ranged attacks in the form of enchanted talismans. She can throw these talismans at enemies, and it fills a bar below their health bar. Once filled, it can initiate a stun leaving the enemy vulnerable to her sword combos. Additionally, she has the ability to see targets on the ground, where enemy projectiles will home in towards her. Using this, she can deflect projectiles with a well-timed swing of her sword. Like GV, it seems she can shoot surges of lightning at tagged enemies.

Development

After the release of Azure Striker Gunvolt 2, series director Yoshihisa Tsuda reportedly struggled with ideas for the third title[1], with CEO Takuya Aizu specifying that while the story had few issues, it was the gameplay that was holding back full-scale development, as Tsuda wanted to devise a new way to reinvent the series' formula, uncomfortable with simply reusing the same system with different stages and bosses[2]. This led to the announcement and release of Gunvolt Chronicles: Luminous Avenger iX, directed by Toshiaki Tai, which was developed in order to tide fans over and give Tsuda more time to come up with ideas[3]. Eventually, development would begin sometime in mid-2020[4], with the game being announced shortly afterwards on June 27th, 2020 on stream at Bitsummit Gaiden, as is series tradition.

On August 6th, 2020, Inti Creates shown an concept art of Kirin.

Trivia

  • This is the first main series Gunvolt game to have a female playable character.
    • Additionally, this is the first game to feature melee combat.
  • This is the first game to have an animal character.

References

  1. Interview with Takuya Aizu
  2. GameSpark interview with Aizu (English translation)
  3. Inti Creates panel at Anime Expo 2019
  4. Gematsu press release

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