Otaku USA Magazine
New to Super Robot Wars? Get Ready to Meet These Classic Mecha

Super Robot Wars is a great place to learn about new (and classic) mecha anime

Super Robot Wars 30 is just a few weeks from release, marking the first time one of the series’s main games has gotten an official global release. You’ll be able to command legendary classics like Mazinger Z, Getter Robo, and a fleet of Gundams. You’ll also have units from Code Geass, SSSS.GRIDMAN, and Magic Knights Rayearth at your fingertips. And if you’re brand new to the mecha multiverse, you’ll likely be meeting a few you’ve never seen before.

That’s one of the great things about these games — you find brand new shows to seek out! This new title has a few series that may be less known if you’re not neck deep in mecha anime already. Allow us to make a few introductions.


Combattler V

Combattler V

Super Electromagnetic Robo Combattler V is, besides a mouthful of a name, a repeat player in the Super Robot Wars franchise. It’s also a milestone in mecha anime history, marking the beginning of the Robot Romance Trilogy. And no, we don’t mean “robot romance” like that — we’ll get to that with J-Decker, be patient.

The Robot Romance Trilogy was the brainchild of Tadao Nagahama, who previously directed the second half of Raideen. Nagahama wanted to bring real storytelling to super robot anime, which at the time was considered Satuday morning toy-selling fare. And it still sold toys… but Combattler V, Voltes V, and Daimos did achieve their goals. Rather than remaining “monster of the week” fare, it branched out into more complex human stories.


Heavy Metal L-Gaim

Heavy Metal L-Gaim

Gundam creator Yoshiyuki Tomino usually makes a fair showing in Super Robot Wars, and 30 is no exception. 1984’s Heavy Metal L-Gaim is another of his, set in a distant five-planet solar system. The protagonist is the lost prince of a monarchy, seeking revenge under an assumed name. And if this all sounds a bit Five Star Stories, that’s because it is. Its creator, Mamoru Nagano, served as character and mecha designer for L-Gaim.

Since it’s a Tomino property, you’re assured of some fantastic character names. Hero Daba Myroad (real name Kamon Myroad) is already pretty good. But that’s nothing compared to Gavlet Gablae, Gaw Ha Leccee, Amandara Kamandara, and… Full Flat. Never change, Tomino.


Brave Police J-Decker

Brave Police J-Decker

Up until now, only two brave series have made their way to Super Robot Wars. The King of Braves GaoGaiGar is a perennial favorite, with Brave Express Might Gaine also making a showing. Brave Police J-Decker marks the third to join the brawl, and we’re expecting the 1994 series to do well for itself.

Like the rest of its Transformers-esque franchise, J-Decker stars a cast of sentient transforming mecha protecting the world with the help of some kids. This time, they’re buddy cop themed. You’ll even catch some Die Hard and Robocop references in the naming conventions. And yes, I wasn’t kidding before. Some of the robots have crushes on some of the humans. Live your best life, boys.

Don’t forget to pre-order Super Robot Wars 30 so you can play the day it comes out!

Kara Dennison

Kara Dennison is a writer, editor, and presenter with bylines at Crunchyroll, Sci-Fi Magazine, Sartorial Geek, and many others. She is a contributor to the celebrated Black Archive line, with many other books, short stories, and critical works to her name.