|Neptunia: Sisters vs. Sisters
|Jan 23, 2024
|Switch, PlayStation 4 | 5, Steam
I’ve had a chance to sit down with the Nintendo Switch release of Neptunia: Sisters vs. Sisters and it’s time to share my thoughts on this port. I’m pretty letdown this release didn’t include the swimsuits by default and they are locked to the Digital Deluxe release. This version does have Maho and Anri as playable characters, which is exclusive to this release. This is just a terrible way to do business as it forces players to buy more than one version if they want all the content. Even the folks who sprang for the limited editions of the previous releases still had to pony up for a Digital Deluxe if they wanted the swimsuits. You can get those on the disc if you want to get the upcoming physical Xbox release, which is just odd in and of itself. Let’s hope this is something they fix with the upcoming release of Gamer Maker.
Since I wanted to cover the performance of this port I will be very light on story and gameplay details in this review. If you want a more detailed look at the story and mechanics please check out my review of the PlayStation 4 release. The story begins as Neptune and the other Goddesses receive a distress call from the PC Continent. They depart to handle this emergency while the CPU Candidates are sent to a nearby abandoned lab to investigate its contents. There they discover a sleeping Goddess, the Ashen Goddess, and as she awakens she traps the sisters in capsules for two years! When they are awakened, they find the world is not how they left it. The latest smartphone, “rPhone,” dominates all of Gamindustri markets, and Planeptune was lost due to Trendi attacks while both Neptune and Nepgear have been away. Nepgear finds herself in a state of depression having lost both her sister and her home; however, new friends Maho and Anri help Nepgear get back on her feet, and they begin to try to get things back in order. Nepgear’s struggle will be great in the face of this new enemy. Can she overcome it and take back her home and save Gamindustri?
Gameplay here is a bit different than previous entries, since the combat is all action based. The world map hasn’t changed a bit however, this is the Gamindustri you know and love. Players will go from place to place, completing missions to progress the story forward. There are plenty of sidequests that come up as well through the ever-popular Chirper app. Here you can take on quests, claim rewards and give likes to the Chirps from the various residents of Gamindustri. These quests are what you would expect: hunt X monster, gather X item, or find lost residents. You will not only gain rewards from this, but also unlock new scouts to use in Disc Development. Making these discs will give you a ton of different buffs that are very useful in battle.
The girls will gain new special abilities and moves as they level up to make slaying your foes even easier with amazing combo attacks. The Switch release gives you access to Maho and Anri right off the bat. Shanghai Alice and Higurashi are also unlocked instantly, so you won’t have to complete the game to use them in combat. This does make the first areas of the game a bit easier since you have access to characters with powerful attacks early on. The photo mode is unlocked when you launch the game as well, which makes a lot more sense than having it do so after you complete one run of the main story.
Graphically I have to say this is one of the best ports Idea Factory has done for the Switch. The character models still look good, even if a bit scaled back, and the environments still look great as well. The shadows on the characters look a bit strange at times, and there are greater loading times than the PlayStation 4 release. This occurs when going in and out of battle, so it can make things janky at times. Overall the framerate is pretty solid, docked or playing in handheld mode, but you will notice some hitches in combat every once in a while. These aren’t too frequent, but it does throw off your combo when it occurs.
Overall the Nintendo Switch release of Neptunia: Sisters vs. Sisters is pretty solid. It may not be as pretty as the other releases, but it still looks good and runs at a solid framerate. The addition of Maho and Anri as playable characters gives this version something the others don’t have, and this is a pretty solid game overall on any platform. The base release will set you back $49.99, and if you want a decent portable version or just want to play around with new characters it’s probably worth your coin. If you have another version of the game already, there isn’t much extra here for you to dig into.
Game was provided by the publisher for review.