Armored Core 6 is here with great reviews and solid initial playercount numbers, given that it was never going to launch on the scale of something like Elden Ring, despite being a FromSoftware title.
But as players jump into the game, they are finding that the game has a hard, hard wall you’re flung into almost immediately, the very first boss of the game. It’s the AH12 HC Helicopter, and it’s proving to be a trial by fire for new and veteran Armored Core players alike.
One of the main issues with the first boss is that you cannot spec your mech into the fight specifically, because it’s too early in the game for that. This is literally the tutorial, so you’re stuck with the loadout you’re given and it’s purely focused on mechanics. The mechanics are…difficult. Advice includes staying on the ground as much as you can, and balancing your and the boss’s stagger gauges, making sure his doesn’t drop with periodic light fire. Use the environment for cover and use assault boost and melee for your biggest damage opportunities.
Some are saying that the boss fight is one of the hardest in FromSoftware history, a studio known for hard boss fights, despite being what amounts to a tutorial for the game. It’s considered a “weed out” for new players, especially content creators who have been struggling hard on stream to get past it, despite wanting to play the new hot thing for their audiences.
There are other bosses in the game that are harder, however, including Batleus much later on:
Players are reporting anywhere from 90 minutes to 5 hours to beat the first boss, especially if they’re unfamiliar with the genre. Some are calling for it to be toned down, but this is FromSoftware, so that seems unlikely unless there is something straight-up bugged with it, where does not appear to be the case.
It seems like a tough, but necessary crucible for the game. It’s a massive relief when that boss is cleared and it prepares you for what to expect from the rest of the game, which will destroy you in entirely new ways. The point is not to give up this early as if you can make it past, and are happy you did so, you will probably enjoy the rest of the game. If you quit in frustration well, perhaps I can’t blame you, but it’s probably worthwhile to persevere.