Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Hyperdimension Neptunia on PS3 Impression

Online goddesses and plenty of reading awaits PS3 owners

NIS delivers what fans want and said fans know exactly what this means. The types of games delivered by NIS America are very niche and fan driven focusing on the older school of RPG gaming. The Ar tonelico and Disgaea series are both long running and very niche in their appeal and very unique in their humor and inside jokes. They please the J-RPG’er in us as well as the anime Otaku. One of their more recent releases, Hyperdimension Neptunia for PlayStation 3 continues this trend and offers up an adventure in-line with the past but one feeling similar to the Persona series. What’s the appeal in Neptunia, why should RPG fans take notice, let’s take a look.

Gameplay – Take control of your beautiful goddess and start running around dungeons and taking on random battles, turn based RPG style battles. There are many funny and quirky aspects to Neptunia from the very bouncy character interactions to the names of people, places and planets but the core of the game is turn-based battles mixed in with dungeon exploring. There was a very Persona feel to these dungeons and all the running around but don’t confuse this offering with Persona. Strip away the window dressing and story and the core game remains an RPG cliché of leveling up and turn based battles. The camera will frustrate with loose controls that make navigation a pain at times. All the reading needed, the story … oh the story to read, it’s a lot folks.

Graphics – Otaku, your heart be still as each of the four goddesses, Black Heart, Purple Heart, Green Heart and White Heart, will each fulfill the anime lady of your desire. The character models in Neptunia are very well designed and look outstanding in HD but these are essentially talking heads, avatars that carry the text and have some heavy breathing movements to them. They are part of the polished, very polished HD core of Neptunia which consist of these ladies, the menus and background sequences. The in-game action is not that much higher quality then the best PS2 title. With a title such as Neptunia gamers are not going to get a true, HD quality next-generation gaming experience but that said this is not poo folks. Neptunia looks good just not great.

Sound – Background music is passable but the voice work is great. The translations and conversations are funny to hilarious and move the game along at a nice clip. The sheer amount of conversation needed does get old but there is no denying the energy it’s delivered with.

Design – Goddesses look great, the rest of the game, its story, layout and design are all passable but won’t leave much of an impression. It’s an RPG with some nice battle sequences but not much else to note.

Miscellaneous – Which goddess is your type? Which one stands for which major console? Black Heart rocks, thoughts?

Overall Hyperdimension Neptunia delivers an RPG on the PS3 with awesome anime goddesses and character design, and well not much else. Nobody can rip Neptunia apart as it’s a middle of the pack RPG and while this may fly on say PSP or DS, for PS3 investing a big more coin requires a bit more game, even with the sweet art book included.

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