Tech Romancer

Tech Romancer (Japanese: 超鋼戦紀キカイオー, Hepburn: Chōkō Senki Kikaiō, "Chronicle of Super Steel Warrior Kikaioh") is a 1998 3D fighting arcade game by Capcom that draws heavily from the various subgenres of mecha anime. It was later ported to the Dreamcast console. The player controls a giant robot which is used to fight another robot in one-on-one combat. Studio Nue (the animation studio responsible for the mechanical designs for the mecha anime series The Super Dimension Fortress Macross) designed the robots in this game.

Tech Romancer
Virgin Interactive (EU)
Composer(s)Yuki Iwai
Platform(s)Arcade, Dreamcast
  • JP: September 14, 1998
  • NA: 1998
  • EU: 1998
  • JP: January 13, 2000
  • NA: March 31, 2000
  • EU: July 7, 2000
  • JP (for Matching Service): January 18, 2001
Mode(s)Up to 2 players, simultaneous play
DisplayRaster, standard resolution, horizontal


The setting of Tech Romancer takes place in a far future of Earth, where advanced technology have made things calm and decent for the citizens of Japan and the rest of the world. However, the peace doesn't last long as an evil alien tyrant named Goldibus invades the planet with its loyal followers and seeks to conquer the world while enslaving the human race with an emotionless iron fist. An unlikely group of heroes band together to fight against the threat of Goldibus with their own unique mecha robots and all of them won't rest until Goldibus is defeated and the world is safe from the imminent danger.

Game modesEdit

The game is primarily played in two modes: Story Mode, and Hero Challenge Mode. The Dreamcast version also had minigames that could be played on the VMU for points.

A screenshot from Tech Romancer's gameplay.

Story ModeEdit

Each mecha has its own story mode, which plays out like an anime series, with each battle broken up by an episode title, eyecatch, and dialog scenes before and after each battle. Each mecha has its own story (where it is the star of its own show), and decisions made in the dialog scenes, as well as the conditions under which a battle is won, can cause some stories to branch out and have multiple paths and endings. The other mecha and characters naturally make appearances, but their role may vary from their actual origins to fit the "star" mecha's story.

Hero Challenge ModeEdit

An "Arcade-style" mode where the player fights through each of the major mecha and bosses. Various hidden mecha and pilots found in the game can only be used in Hero Challenge Mode. In the Dreamcast version, points earned in Hero Challenge Mode and the VMU minigames could be used to purchase hidden characters including boss characters and movies.

Matching ServiceEdit

In Japan, the game is re-released as "Choukou Senki Kikaioh For Matching Service" because of its online functionality.


Battles take place mostly on a flat 3D plane, with buildings and other terrain features scattered around. Destroying the terrain (by attacking or walking through them) releases power-ups, which include three weapons (vary between each character/mecha), armor or life powerups, and the Hero Mode powerup, which increases the power of your mecha's attacks, and may also unlock additional abilities or moves.

Rather than rounds, the matches are decided by the life meters of the fighters. Each fighter has two life meters, and is destroyed when the second one is depleted. In addition, each mecha gets an armor gauge that, when broken by consistent brute attacks, lowers the mecha's defense and makes it harder to recover from attacks received.

Each mecha has at least two super attacks, as well as a Final Attack, which is usable when the opponent is down to the last 50% of their second lifebar. This attack, when activated and successfully connected, automatically destroys the opponent, winning the battle.


Aggregate score
Review scores
AllGame     [2]
Game Informer8.5/10[6]
GamePro     [9]
Next Generation     [14]

In Japan, Game Machine listed Tech Romancer on their November 1, 1998 issue as being the sixth most-successful arcade game of the year.[15]

Greg Orlando reviewed the Dreamcast version of the game for Next Generation, rating it three stars out of five, and stated that "It's not often when we get to step into our favorite anime and beat some metal ass. Now if only the fighting were as inspired as the off-the-wall anime plot..."[14]

The Dreamcast version received "favorable" reviews according to the review aggregation website GameRankings.[1] In Japan, Famitsu gave it a score of 29 out of 40.[5]


  1. ^ a b "Tech Romancer for Dreamcast". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  2. ^ Ottoson, Joe. "Tech Romancer (DC) - Review". AllGame. All Media Network. Archived from the original on November 16, 2014. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  3. ^ "Tech Romancer". Electronic Gaming Monthly. Ziff Davis. 2000.
  4. ^ Corbettis, Chris "Klamy" (August 29, 2000). "Tech Romancer". Eurogamer. Gamer Network. Archived from the original on January 7, 2001. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  5. ^ a b "超鋼戦紀キカイオー [ドリームキャスト]". Famitsu (in Japanese). Enterbrain. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  6. ^ "Tech Romancer". Game Informer. No. 87. FuncoLand. July 2000.
  7. ^ G-Wok (May 2000). "Tech Romancer Review". Game Revolution. CraveOnline. Archived from the original on September 26, 2015. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  8. ^ Buchanan, Levi (June 1, 2000). "REVIEW for Tech Romancer (DC)". GameFan. Shinno Media. Archived from the original on June 21, 2000. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  9. ^ Kilo Watt (June 30, 2000). "Tech Romancer Review for Dreamcast on". GamePro. IDG Entertainment. Archived from the original on February 9, 2005. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  10. ^ Mielke, James (January 20, 2000). "Tech Romancer Review [Import; date mislabeled as "May 5, 2000"]". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  11. ^ BenT (June 20, 2000). "Tech Romancer". PlanetDreamcast. IGN Entertainment. Archived from the original on January 25, 2009. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  12. ^ Gantayat, Anoop (January 21, 2000). "Kikaioh (Import . . . Tech Romancer)". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  13. ^ Gantayat, Anoop (June 19, 2000). "Tech Romancer". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  14. ^ a b Orlando, Greg (June 2000). "Finals". Next Generation. Vol. 3 no. 6. Imagine Media. p. 96.
  15. ^ "Game Machine's Best Hit Games 25 - TVゲーム機ーソフトウェア (Video Game Software)". Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 575. Amusement Press, Inc. 1 November 1998. p. 21.

External linksEdit