Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn PS3 1

Let's start with the obvious: when you've just coughed up around £30 for a game only to find that there's a £24.99 DLC bundle ready and waiting on the PlayStation Store from day one, it's hard not to feel a little robbed. Sure, it's stuff that adds to the core game, but you probably haven't even had the chance to shoot down your first grunt mobile suit before hearing about the existence of this digital package. Fortunately, it seems worse than it actually is. Firstly, you have to remember that all of this DLC was released week after week in its native Japan – you're just purchasing it in bulk. Secondly, if there's anything in the bundle that you don't like the look of, note that you can buy each piece of content separately. And finally, these add-ons aren't the usual frivolous bits and pieces that Koei Tecmo seems obsessed with – there are no costume packs here.

So, what's up for sale? With names like 'The Epic Bundle' and 'The Legendary Bundle', you can't blame anyone looking at Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn's store page for not knowing. Essentially, there are two types of DLC on offer: additional missions, and additional playable characters. It's worth mentioning, however, that the bonus characters also come with their own set of themed missions, which explains why they're the most expensive of the bunch. For reference, here's a handy little list of the content that's available:

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  • Fleet Battle Bundle - £2.49 (missions)
  • Gundam Action Bundle - £2.49 (missions)
  • The Legendary Bundle - £2.49 (missions)
  • The Epic Bundle - £1.69 (missions)
  • Endless Waltz Bundle - £3.99 (character/suit + missions)
  • Gundam 00 Bundle - £3.99 (character/suit + missions)
  • Crossbone Bundle - £3.99 (character/suit + missions)
  • Stardust Memory Bundle - £3.99 (character/suit + missions)
  • Unicorn Bundle - £3.99 (character/suit + missions)
  • Complete Bundle - £24.99 (contains all of the above)
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Of course, the big question is whether or not the 'Complete Bundle' is worth its hefty asking price. If you bought every piece of DLC separately, it'd cost you £29.11, which means that the compiled pack saves you £4.12. Not a huge amount, but ultimately, it's probably worth forking over the cash for the full deal rather than picking and choosing – especially if you're a big fan of the game. That said, you may just be interested in playing as one or two of the new pilots and their mobile suits, so let's talk a bit about them and determine if they're worth stepping onto the battlefield with.

As you may expect from premium personalities, each of the five pilots available are rather effective in battle. There are more than enough deadly suits in the vanilla game, but if you're looking for machines that are borderline broken before you've even had much of a chance to upgrade them, then perhaps these units are for you. Setsuna's 00 Quan[T] is both incredibly flashy and utterly merciless, while Heero's Wing Zero Custom is the result of the series' first foray into the feature length animation, Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz. Needless to say, this feathered unit is a force to be reckoned with too, especially since many of its charge attacks send it zipping into the air where enemies will have a hard time touching you.

Meanwhile, the fan favourite Crossbone Gundam is perfect for rampaging through opposing armies in style as your cape flows behind you, and the Full Armour Unicorn Gundam packs some of the largest artillery that you'll find in the entire release. Kou Uraki's GP03 Gundam also makes an appearance, and boasts its absolutely devastating Dendrobium Orchis – a huge armament that slots around the suit itself – when you unleash burst mode out in space. All five of the DLC units will make short work out of grunts and aces alike, and it's clear that quite a bit of time and effort has been put into their decidedly extravagant looking attacks.

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That's not all, though. As we mentioned before, the downloadable characters all come with their own set of missions for you to chew through in ultimate mode. Much like the stories that are already featured there, the DLC missions are mostly standard in design: complete a couple of tasks, shoot down some aces, and then tackle a beefed-up boss. There are no surprises here, but it's still nice to have a few scenarios that are tailored to your new pilots so that you can put them to the test without having to double back into missions that you've already completed.

Elsewhere, the packs that focus solely on new missions are a little less impressive. While they'll provide a surprisingly beefy chunk of content to have fun with, the vast majority of objectives are actions that you'll already have taken countless times before within the core game. Each pack sports several different scenarios that are available as soon as you've installed them, and their lower price point does mean that there's fun to be had here if you're desperate for more things to do and aren't too bothered about playing as any new characters – just don't expect any gameplay revelations for your money.

The bottom line here is that if you want to expand your Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn experience with a rather large amount of new content, you're best off taking the plunge and buying the Complete Bundle. It's always going to seem expensive – and it is – but if you can't tear yourself away from Omega Force's latest mech-'em-up, you're probably going to get your money's worth. If you're still not entirely convinced, you could always just grab your favourite DLC pilots and enjoy their powerful mobile suits and themed missions, but even then, nabbing all five characters will cost you £19.95, so if you don't want to miss out on a particular personality, you're still better off slapping down the extra £5 for the slew of bonus missions that the Complete Bundle provides.