The Armored Core series is one of the most beloved mecha game franchises of all time. With over 23 titles under its belt, it is also one of the longest-running gaming franchises around. However, we haven’t seen a game since 2013’s Verdict Day, leaving fans wondering if FromSoftware (which has gone from strength to strength with the Souls series of games) still has an interest in the franchise.
We have yet to see any official announcement on their end, there has been a good amount of chatter recently about a new Armored Core entry being developed. While this new game should take a while to come out, many video games and game developers have created their own mecha games that somehow capture the spirit of Armored Core.
When making this list, I made sure that each game must have customizable mechs and combat mechanics that make them feel like solid substitutes or love letters to the Armored Core franchise.
Here are the best mecha games similar to Armored Core:
Daemon X Machina
Currently free on the Epic Games Store, Daemon X Machina feels like a love letter to the Armored Core series, thanks to fairly deep customization, and fast-paced combat that is both fun and challenging.
Set in a future where a resource-rich planet has created rogue AI, your task is to eliminate these rogue mechs and save humanity. There are a few differences from Armored Core, such as the ability to explore as your pilot in a hub to customize your mech and look for missions. Combat also adds the ability to scavenge parts from fallen enemies, which is a fun little feature in itself.
If you’re looking for one game on this list to try first, Daemon X Machina is a great choice.
Gundam Breaker 3
Gundam has its own set of video games that have spanned decades, and the Gundam Breaker series is one of the best around. Gundam Breaker 3 is arguably the best out of the 4 games, giving players so many customization options that allow them to create a mobile suit that can suit their playstyle while looking great at the same time.
While the game’s setting (a game within a game) is a far cry from Armored Core’s conflict-laden world, there’s enough mecha action that’s rewarding and fun to play. After playing for a while, you might end up spending hours just in the customization alone.
If Daemon X Machina had you face off against rogue AI, M.A.S.S. Builder is a game that has you take on alien invaders with your own customized mech. When it comes to customization, the game offers deep cosmetic features, along with a skill tree-like upgrade system that allows you to create the perfect build that suits your playstyle. Combat is fast and hectic, with a good amount of visual flair that keeps it engaging.
The game is still in Early Access on Steam, but the current build of the game has enough content to keep you coming for more.
A first-person/VR mecha game, Vox Machinae offers a more immersive experience compared to the other games. The change in perspective allows you to feel like an actual pilot, allowing you to turn on switches and allow you to look around through your helmet.
This makes combat engaging and tense, as you can get blindsided by enemies if you’re not careful. Another Early Access game, Vox Machinae is a work in progress that already looks like a lot of fun.
Mecha Knights: Nightmare
At first glance, Mecha Knights: Knightmare ticks all the Armored Core boxes, from the mech designs to the gritty atmosphere. However, it changes it up a bit by adding a couple of horror elements to the mix to create a tense atmosphere that makes combat exciting.
Your main focus is to customize your mech to stop monster hordes from taking over, which feels like a survival horror game at times. Along with that, the combat feels smooth, allowing for some quick strafing runs and timely dodges.
Another game that changes things up a bit in terms of perspective, Brigador is a top-down cyberpunk mecha game that offers a good amount of destruction that it just had to be on this list.
The game’s visuals give it a nice retro feel, giving off some early Front Mission or Assault Suit Valken. The combat is just as intense and challenging as those games too, with enemies constantly at your tail each level
What makes this game unique, is that apart from having a deep mech customization feature, you also have the ability to create your own levels. This allows you to test out your best mech builds and create your own set of challenges.
Front Mission: Evolved
While it may not be one of the best Front Mission games, Front Mission Evolved is still a very competent mecha game that offers a wide range of customization that the franchise is known for, along with combat that should scratch that Armored Core itch.
A complete story reboot of the Front Mission series, Evolved has you play as a USN pilot who enters into a war against the OCU. While the narrative is a step back from previous titles, it’s a mecha game that offers enough action to keep you busy.
About the Author
A former teacher and guitarist, Jude (Twitter, Instagram) is currently a writer that covers video games and is one of the co-hosts of The Geeky Juans. Apart from hosting the podcast, you can also catch him streaming at Dude It’s Jude on Facebook.