Well, did you? If not, don’t worry about it. If so, how the hell did that happen? Gotcha Force one of the most obscure Gamecube games I’ve ever had contact with. And it was and still is pretty great. In layman’s terms, it’s an open-plane 3D mini-robo fighter. Shoot ‘em up or beat’em up, whichever way you swing.
Let’s break down the basics. This is a game that consists of creating a team of Gotcha borgs in order to fight enemy Gotcha borg teams. Each Gotcha borg is worth a certain number of points, and your team cannot exceed that number. You earn more points by winning battles, beating bosses, or passing through plot checkpoints. There are over 200 different borgs to choose from, most of which must be unlocked through winning battles in which you fight the desired borg. Some borgs only drop data fragments of themselves and will only be unlocked once all fragments are collected. Some are unlocked instantly.
Now, Gotcha Force wanted to balance the player’s gain of borgs and borg fragments, so all borgs have a drop chance dependant upon the playthrough you’re on, up to a maximum of nine playthroughs. You can still beat the campaign and start over past nine, but the drop chance doesn’t swell any further. Before you wonder, yes, it is all rather time consuming. But so is Pokemon, and people plug hundreds of hours of playtime into those games, millions collectively, so what’s wrong with a little rare borg grinding, hm? Besides, these godly rare borgs will make up for all the time spent repeating that one stage, hoping desperately to get that last fragment.
So, if these borgs are so badass, what exactly do they do? How do you play them? I’ll tell you, but first, this: Gotcha Force is a simplistic game, rather easy to play, with user-friendly controls and just enough tutorial to get you going without babying you. You may use every button, C-stick exempt, but it won’t bother you in the least. A to jump, B for primary weapon, X for secondary weapon, L and R to switch targets. Don’t worry about locking on, that’s all taken care of for you. When you lock, you always look at your target dead on. In certain circumstances, that may be inconvenient, but the stages are big, so it doesn’t hurt to lock on to a second opponent or to press Z to look at your ally to improve your awareness of your surroundings.
Onto the borgs themselves. There are precisely 20 different classes, or “tribes” of Gotcha borgs, each encompassing a different role. Gunner borgs take care of long-range extermination, Knight and Samurai borgs shred their enemies up close, Tank borgs move slow but hit hard, Air borgs pepper enemies with bullets from the sky, so on, so forth. The game is adaptable to any playstyle the player prefers, from glass cannon to ungodly tank. It all depends on how you build your team.
Let’s discuss the campaign a bit, just so you know what you’ll be grinding. The main characters are all kids, and the voice acting is the worst I have ever heard in my entire gaming career and life. The missions are diverse, enjoyable, if not slightly redundant after playthrough five. This is easily solved by mixing up your team composition to maximize enjoyment. If you really want to go for broke, you can try to collect all of the alternate color models of your favorite borgs. Or all of them. The color range is as follows: Alternate, crystal, silver, gold, and shadow. Each color has its own benefits, so feel free to go insane trying to procure every single last color variation of every single borg. I did. And do I sound insane to you? Get the game. Dust off your Gamecube. Unwind your controller and plug it in. You’ll have so much fun.