Megadimension Neptunia VII is the first Hyperdimension Neptunia game on PS4 and, as you may know, I’m a big fan of the series so I’m excited to see what Compile Heart have done with this installment.
It’s good. Really good. If you’ve been waiting years for a Hyperdimension Neptunia title to hit PS4 then this won’t disappoint you. Megadimension sees sisters Neptuna and Nepgear thrown into Zero Dimension where they meet new character Uzume, one of the sole survivors of this world that’s been ravaged by a new enemy. Megadimension is grander in scope than past titles in the series and it’ll throw you across multiple dimensions in an effort to save them and, of course, to save Gamindustri. Most characters return so expect to see the lovely CPU’s as well as the CPU Candidates, along with Neptune’s closest friends Compa and IF. They remain one of the most enjoyable casts in gaming, and they help to keep the game feeling fresh despite how many sequels and spin-offs in the series there have been – they’re all just so good! Also, Umio is comedy gold.
If you’ve found yourself here, chances are you’ve played your fair share of games in the series and you’ll be pleased to know that they’ve improved on their current formula and now it’s better than ever. The series may be one of the biggest turn-based games around today and with good reason – the gameplay is tight, accessible and explosive. You can take four characters into battle and choose to attack, defend, use a skill or item, or to run away. You’re able to move around in a limited area before choosing what action you’ll take and see what range you have, meaning you can choose to move closer to an ally to heal them or maybe place a character who’s got weaker defence or long range moves to attack an enemy from further away, which should keep them away from harm assuming that the enemy aims for another target. If you’re feeling a bit fatigued from how much Neptunia we’ve had in recent years then this is unlikely to change your mind, but as the first proper sequel we’ve had in a long time, it definitely deserves to be played by fans.
A new addition is ‘giant battles’ which, like the name suggests, pits you against a giant enemy that’s far bigger than you. In these battles you can only use SP moves but your SP regenerates a little after each turn – this Neptunia game is arguably the darkest in the series, and the size of these new foes helps to drive that point home. Like the other installments, you can do team attacks and evolve into your CPU form which grants higher base stats – if your SP is too low, you’ll be forced back into your normal form. When you’re not battling you’ll be using the open-world map to travel between areas and you’ll sometimes be ambushed by an enemy, and when you reach your destination or a dungeon then you’ll be taken inside to traverse further.
This may be the first Neptunia game on PS4 and although it’s not leaps and bounds above its predecessors it certainly looks better, but what really matters here is that it runs much smoother. Neptunia games, usually only when traversing dungeons, can suffer from framerate issues that can sometimes be pretty jarring but those issues aren’t to be seen here. Other than that, I’m loving the art style and the character design is top notch as is to be expected, with each character looking unique and being a great representative of whatever platform or company they’re based on. The 2D portraits and CG images are still gorgeous, and having a gallery makes for nice viewing.
The voice-acting is genuinely brilliant as always and, although I seem to say this in every Neptunia review, the series has some of the best English voice-acting around. If English isn’t your thing then you can download the Japanese voice-over free of charge on the PlayStation Store. You can’t go wrong with either voice-over but I absolutely adore the English dub, and recommend giving it a try if you usually play the games in Japanese. The OST seems to have stepped its game up because even though this has always been impressive also, I found myself generally enjoying this OST much more – the overworld theme shot straight into my favourites!
As a long-time fan of the series, I’m happy with what Compile Heart have done with Megadimension Neptunia VII – I like the darker tone of story whilst leaving the characters to be the same personalities that they’ve always been, and they compliment each other nicely. This could very well be the best game in the series so far and I’m already interested to see where the series will go next as it’s clearly showing no sign of slowing down, especially with how the series is known for using timelines and such in future stories. Megadimension Neptunia VII is currently one of the best JRPG’s available on the PS4, and one of the funniest. You can start with this game but I wouldn’t recommend it although it does a decent job in helping newcomers, but if you’re a fan and you don’t already own this then you owe it to yourself to try and get your hands on it!