By Steve Baltimore / May 13th, 2015
|Title||Hyperdimension Neptunia U: Action Unleashed!|
|Publisher||Idea Factory, Compile Heart|
|Release Date||May 19, 2015|
|Genre||Beat ’em up|
|Age Rating||ESRB – Teen|
Hyperdimension Neptunia U: Action Unleashed! is another spinoff in the ever-growing Hyperdimenison Neptunia universe. This game was developed by Tamsoft, who you may know from the Senran Kagura series. While most games in the Neptunia series are RPGs, this time around they decided to try something different, a beat ’em up. How well did the story and setting translate over to this new genre? Let’s find out.
The CPUs and their sisters have vanquished all foes from Gamindustri, and now is a time of peace. The problem with peace is that having nothing to do leads to boredom run rampant. One day, the CPUs and candidates are approached with an interesting offer from two leading game journalists, Dengekiko and Famitsu. They want to do a story on the CPUs and candidates showing off their qualities, and, to do this, they line up some quests for the heroines to undertake. Will this be a good opportunity show for residents or will they bite off more than they can chew?
The story is filled with all the great spoofing and fourth wall breaking that people have come to know and love. There are plenty of great jokes and one-liners that will have you laughing out loud. There is also a lot of bonding between the sisters and the CPUs, which can be very sweet and very funny all at the same time. Uni and Noire interacting together is just pure gold. Overall, the localization work on this game is probably the best I’ve seen in the series so far. Everything is well written and just plain entertaining, so series fans will find a lot to love here.
Graphically, this game looks great. The character and enemy models look very similar to what you find in other games in the series. The combat areas will be very familiar to those that have played any of the previous titles, and look pretty much the same. Some of the areas will be arena style, while others are bigger maps for you to explore. The game runs at a good consistent frame rate, as well. Even with tons of enemies on the screen, it doesn’t slow down or chop one bit.
The music contains lots of tracks series veterans will be familiar with. These include such battle themes as “To Hell” and “Solid Park,” among many others. There are also some new tracks thrown into the mix, as well. I really loved the new tracks, and most of them were very upbeat with some metal thrown in there — perfect to smash tons of monsters into goo. The English voice cast returns to reprise their roles this time around, and, as always, they do a great job. Fans of the dub will be happy to know every line in this game is voiced. The Japanese audio is included, as well, if you prefer that cast.
Gameplay starts by you selecting a mission. Most missions consist of beating a boss or killing X number of enemies. However, there are some missions that have hidden goals. These missions will give you a hint in the description, and you’ll have to figure out how to clear them, but, most of the time, it is obvious what to do. Before starting a mission, you can go to the setup menu and get the gals ready for battle. In this menu, you equip weapons and accessories, change your costume and purchase upgrades via monster coins. These coins will be dropped randomly by the monsters you defeat in combat. The upgrades consist of stat bonuses, new weapons and accessories.
Accessories are really important in this game, since they give major stat boosts and have other crazy effects. Some will raise one stat while lowering another, others will prevent certain status aliments, and there are some that just give you a great boost. You will have to equip these on the CPUs and candidates in both human and HDD forms. This gives you a lot of freedom to set the characters up any way you want.
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