Mighty Gunvolt Burst

Review: Mighty Gunvolt Burst

Azure Striker Gunvolt was one of the best-looking games on the 3DS bar none, with gorgeous pixel art that lit up the screen.  Its arrival was accompanied by a retro-styled “prequel”, Mighty Gunvolt, which oddly seemed more pertinent than the main event.  Meanwhile, gamers were getting their hopes up for a release called Mighty No. 9, which introduced the character of Beck.  Mighty Gunvolt Burst is a combination of all three and, happily, almost certainly the best of the lot.

In this title, both Beck and Gunvolt are playable, the latter of which’s unusual “tag and unleash” gameplay having wisely been simplified to be more like the former’s.  Make no mistake, this is Beck’s game.  Whichever character you choose, the aim is to defeat a series of bosses that await you at the end of each stage.  Apart from the easy introductory stage and final gauntlet of levels, they can be done in any order.  It must be said the graphics are excellent; superficially similar to Mighty Gunvolt’s, but drawn with a perfect balance between clarity and subtlety.


Stages are full of just the right number of teeth-gnashing jumps, collectibles and secret rooms, all finished with an end-of-level boss.  The “Burst” of the title refers to the act of defeating an enemy at close range.  Do this in unbroken succession and you’ll quickly rack up a combo bonus, which contributes massively to your ranking.  Mighty Gunvolt Burst greatly encourages repeat runs through levels.  Some of the challenges are tough, but the game is considerate enough not to expect a perfect performance in one go.

Because both Beck and Gunvolt are heavily technology-reliant, they can make great use of various upgrades they find.  These include boosts to attack and defence, as well as very useful weapon modifications such as the ability to fire diagonally.  It could be said there is too much customisation.  Weapons can be adjusted so much, it takes away the satisfaction of knowing you have exactly the right tool for the job.  Bosses, meanwhile, seem too difficult at first.  Although Beck can eventually be made into an absolute tank, this is something of a grind, and it reduces the feel that the challenge has been precision designed.

More than anything, though, Mighty Gunvolt Burst is a release that very deliberately gives gamers what they want.  It is the spiritual Mega Man sequel so many have been clamouring for.  The platforming is so challenging and inventive, in that regard it is without doubt the equal of the very most celebrated indie titles.  It’s all finished off with a superb final boss that may cause the player to wonder if the game could have been even better had it been more its own beast.  

Mighty Gunvolt Burst may be Beck’s best outing yet, but with a bit more originality overall and the freedom of not sticking to a previous (albeit cherished) template, perhaps he has even better days ahead of him.

N-Europe Final Verdict

Mighty Gunvolt Burst is a title that most gamers will like and many will love. The core idea is admittedly previously trodden ground, but the platforming is designed with originality and panache. It’s as easy to recommend this game as it is hard to imagine many not enjoying it.

  • Gameplay4
  • Playability4
  • Visuals5
  • Audio4
  • Lifespan5
Final Score



Superb visuals
Imaginative platforming


Unnecessary amount of customisation
Undoubtedly derivative

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