Azur Lane Crosswave
Top Critic Average
In the end, that's the real draw of Azur Lane: Crosswave, rather than its gameplay, which is more of a formality. As such, your reaction to it will likely depend on your on how receptive you are to Azur Lane itself. Existing fans and open-minded lovers of cute anime girls gabbing will find much to dive deep into, but everyone else is probably better off taking some shore leave.
Azur Lane: Crosswave has a well-written story mode that runs as deep as the ocean, but the combat that strings these story scenes together is as shallow as a kiddie pool. It's wonderful to see fan favourites interact, and the voice acting adds a lot to the already charming story mode, but it's a shame that the gameplay fails to leave as much of an impression as the narrative and art did.
Azur Lane Crosswave is a tale of two games. On one hand, you have the story mode, which features a chunky, entertaining narrative that also doubles as a visual novel with nice art and excellent Japanese voice acting. On the other hand, you have the 3D combat, which starts out promising but eventually feels a bit sparse and shallow. That being said, I still enjoyed my time with Crosswave. It won’t be for everyone. But if you love the lore behind Azur Lane, it might be worth dipping into this pool for the story mode alone.
There is enough variance to make sure for a large majority of story battles you have a way of coming in with a fresh look, but the battles kind of always play out the same way, so it’s frustrating when the build you brought isn’t good enough and you struggle to get through what you were clearing before without any problems.
Despite the rather negative sounding review, Azur Lane: Crosswave isn't a bad game, it's just nothing particularly special. Fans of Neptunia will likely enjoy the silly antics of cute girls, but others will probably fail to see the appeal. It's a character-driven adventure with rudimentary gameplay and a hollow story that manages to be oddly dialogue-heavy. Beyond that, enjoyment will come down to how interested you are in upgrading your ships or figuring out why one character might be better than another. If this sounds good, odds are you'll enjoy Azur Lane: Crosswave, whereas everyone else need not apply.
It's a clean, snappy, hugely entertaining game, and an excellent next step forward for the emerging property.
Your enjoyment of Azur Lane: Crosswave will almost entirely rely on your affinity for gawking at anime girls. If that doesn't align with your tastes then you'll likely be disappointed by the mostly tedious and repetitive experience offered here.
Azur Lane: Crosswave is for the fans, plain and simple. The game might hold over a newcomer for an hour or two, but the repetitive nature of the gameplay won’t keep their attention. Still, there are some rather attractive ship girls here that make it all a little easier to digest. This game knows its audience and doesn’t cater too much outside of that.
Azur Lane: Crosswave is a mobile to console game that should have stayed mobile.
Azur Lane: Crosswave doesn't harbour ambitions to be more than it really is and, though it may be a bit underwhelming, it at least doesn't outstay its welcome. It's perfectly happy to just provide some hours of mild entertainment without trying to reinvent the wheel and that may be enough for some, but certainly not all.