It’s time to take a look at Idea Factory’s latest cute and colorful JRPG, Super Neptunia RPG!!
Super Neptunia OMG!
Happy Wednesday backloggers!! This may come as a surprise to you, because if I’m going to be perfectly honest, it surprises me. But I actually have some pure, unadulterated gaming updates to share with you. I know! It may take a few seconds to catch your breath after being so exacerbated, but I’ll give you until the next paragraph. There are words to type after all!!
So, thanks to the always gracious Idea Factory for sending me over a review code, I’ve been plugging away at their latest and greatest, hyper cute JRPG, Super Neptunia RPG! A 2D side scrolling offshoot of one of their most popular series, Hyperdimension Neptunia. Now, although I’ve never actually played a Neptunia game before, it has always been a series I’ve wanted to add to my collection since its inception on the PS3. I absolutely loved its bright and colorful anime aesthetics and the whole breaking the fourth wall, “game within a game” kinda concept. Unfortunately though, I never got around to pulling the trigger and picking one up to play.
Then, when Idea Factory announced their new 2D addition to the series, I thought it would be a great jumping in point! And so far, I’m not disappointed! Really, what inspired me to want to play this one first, was it’s Paper Mario style take on the universe. That is, it seemed like a silly, simplified take on the games it was influenced by, but with beautifully hand drawn graphics instead of the polygonal variety. Though, after playing it, it’s not quite as simple as I would have expected. But the humor is definitely still there, as well as some of the other things you’d expect from a side scrolling RPG, like platforming, quests and simple puzzles.
It’s A Role Playing Game Alright
As an RPG it has pretty much everything you would want really. NPCs to talk to, equipment to buy and find, levels to gain, enemies to battle and lots of quests. And when I say lots, I mean lots! Lucky for us, they were kind enough to give us a nice quest log that’s easy to follow. That and the ability to fast travel right out the gate!
The battle system is fun and unique as well. With a structure similar to what you would find in Final Fantasy XIII. Where an “ATB” gauge will fill up and you’ll expend energy from it in order to execute attacks. It’s pretty intuitive to use, though it can get a little complicated once you start adding new party members, mostly because they all share the same gauge. You’ll also fill up a “Break Attack” meter as you do damage to enemies, that will eventually allow you to use a powerful and high damage dealing “Break Attack”. Each character has their own unique Break Attack too, so it’s fun to experiment with which ones are the most effective against the various enemies.
Another Piece of the Puzzle
The coolest part of the battle system, in my opinion, is how you gain abilities and how you use them in battle. So, in a traditional RPG you would gain abilities as you level up, but in Super Neptunia RPG you instead gain them from equipping weapons. Similar to how you would learn spells and such in Final Fantasy Tactics. These will initially be temporary and only accessible when you equip the particular piece of gear, but if you use the weapon or piece of armor enough in battle, you’ll eventually unlock it as a permanent, equipable skill. Then, it is up to you to decide which of those skills and abilities you want to use during battle. And that’s where the next mechanic comes in, Formations.
Although a relatively simple concept, formations allow you to basically “equip” various sets of skills for each of your characters that can be switched between, on the fly, in battle. When you first start the game, you don’t have access to this mechanic, but as you gain more party members, it becomes an integral part of your strategy when fighting enemies. For example, you can have a purely offensive formation with high damage spells and physical attacks, while another can be used for healing and buffs. Very handy, and I was super excited when I could finally use them and switch things up as I needed!
Like a Kangaroo! Like a Kangaroo!
All in all, I’m very much enjoying my time with Super Neptunia RPG so far! I love the colorful graphics and silly dialog, as well as the straight forward (yet somewhat complex) RPG elements. If I was to complain about anything, it would probably be its half hearted platforming inclusions and the slightly annoying voice overs that constantly repeat the same lines over and over again! I get that it wouldn’t be very interesting if the entire game was flat, but Neptune isn’t exactly built for jumping! There are a few instances where it just didn’t feel like she wanted to do what I told her to do.
Though, some of my issues were alleviated by the discovery that I could air dash! Obviously, I wasn’t paying attention when then were trying to tell me about it! Hot tip of the day folks, pay attention to the tutorials. And the voices? Well, you might just be better off switching the spoken dialog to Japanese instead of English.
Anyways, if you’re a fan of the Neptunia serious, or if you’re in the mood for a super cute and light hearted JRPG, then I’d definitely say give this one a try. Though if you have an aversion to repetitive banter that telegraphs every single move your doing as you’re doing it, then you may just want to turn the volume down.
If you’re interested in checking out Super Neptunia RPG you can find it now on the PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch and Steam!!
A One Twenty What?
Well my dear friends, I think that’ll do it for today! I’m looking forward to playing more Super Neptunia RPG and I’ll keep you all up to date on my progress! It should be a fun one to do a Backlog Review of too! I’ve never done a video review for an RPG before so it may prove to be a challenge due to its length, but I think I’m up to it!!
Until tomorrow folks, have a great rest of your day!!
Super Neptunia RPG (PlayStation 4)
Punch Line (Steam) – The Wife
Borderlands 2 (Xbox One)
Total Backlogged Games: 723 …the number of hours I’ll end up sinking into this game if I don’t learn to pay attention!!
Total Completed Games: 31 …the number of seconds my “ah ha” moment lasted until I got back into the game.
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And you can keep tabs on my backlog by checking out the Backlog Odyssey Backloggery game list!