Purifying warzones with nature, Liberty mechs, and a high school student turned president of Japan – Liberation Maiden has all the hallmarks that come attached to the Suda51 name.
Originally launched as one-quarter of Level-5’s Guild01 compilation, Liberation Maiden arrives on our shores as a standalone download via Nintendo’s eShop but this is one slice of Suda madness that’s surprisingly uninspired.
Liberation Maiden’s premise is based around student Shoko Ozora being appointed the president of New Japan and tasked protecting her country by means of a hulking mech suit.
It’s a concept you’d expect to find scrawled on the scrapbook belonging to the same mind that brought us No More Heroes and Killer 7. Yet Suda’s involvement seems to end there.
A slight and uninspired mech shooter, Liberation Maiden struggles to live up to its bonkers premise.
You’re thrown into five largely dissimilar missions tasked with destroying spikes that erupt from the ground and syphon off New Japan’s energy supply. You’ll have to plug a handful of these before tackling the boss-like Greater Spikes.
Submissions will task you with taking out smaller targets and investigating areas of the map but these are small distractions to the greater task.
Controls are familiar to those of Kid Icarus Uprising albeit without any of the customisable features. The Circle Pad steers your mech-suited president through the air, aiming missiles and lasers using the stylus. It’s fiddly and almost entirely unplayable to us lefties.
Liberation Maiden earns points for its visuals and gorgeous anime cut-scenes (even in the story…) but at roughly an hour’s running time, Suda’s most disappointing title is by far his shortest. Stage Attack and a Gallery of 30 items to unlock aren’t likely to keep your attention long either.
Judging by the game’s cliffhanger ending, Liberation Maiden’s destined for a sequel but such a follow-up will have to make strides to amend the shortcomings of its debut. Even Suda fans should take caution before dipping into their digital wallets.
Version Tested: Nintendo 3DS
Review copy provided by LEVEL-5