Superdimension Neptune Vs. SEGA Hard Girls (PS Vita) Review

By Drew Hurley 28.10.2016 3

Review for Superdimension Neptune Vs. SEGA Hard Girls on PS Vita

The Neptune franchise has been running since 2010, giving the retro gaming fans out there their anthropomorphised fix, with the goddesses of Gamindustri battling out quite literal console wars. Then, in 2013, SEGA got in on the act with its own franchise, SEGA Hard Girls, bringing licenced anthropomorphised ladies to anime and light novels, but they didn't get their own game. Now, Compile Heart has managed to get its hands on the rights to combine these goddesses in a smackdown battle across generations!

The story follows IF, a lone girl tearing across a post-apocalyptic wasteland on a tricked-out motorcycle, trying to find some way to restore the dystopia her world has become. Her latest attempt has IF on her way to the Grand Library, a great repository of knowledge of the world, hoping some secret there can help her quest. Her journey receives a delay as an amnesiac girl named Segami falls from the sky. The duo pairs up to work together and reach the library where a diminutive custodian named Histoire gives them the ability to travel through time to try and find where the world went so wrong, and, if possible, fix things. Soon enough, the duo is joined by Neptune herself, but in a very different form to how she's ever been seen before!

This quest sends the trio travelling to different eras of SEGA consoles. There is a Mega Drive era, a Saturn era, a Dreamcast era and a Game Gear era. In each era, they find the respective SEGA console girl at odds with their respective Hyperdimension Goddess. Nepgear battles Game Gear, Uzume takes on Dreamcast, Plutia versus Saturn. Every time period is stuffed to bursting with easter eggs and nods to both the Hyperdimension franchise and the SEGA systems.

The bulk of the gameplay is made up by taking on quests from Histoire and travelling between time periods completing them. It turns out there is a dark god called the Time Eater that is devouring sections of time, and the only way to weaken it is to complete these quests. Once enough quests are complete, the party can take on the Time Eater to try and restore history and the world.

Screenshot for Superdimension Neptune Vs. SEGA Hard Girls on PS Vita

The game is very similar to the Hyperdimension Re;birth titles on Vita, with a similar overworld filled with stages system. The stages have now added a bit more depth by giving the ability to jump, climb and crawl through each level. The combat system is something of a simplified version of the familiar Neptunia combat system. The battles are turn-based and set in a small area where characters can move around and use abilities, but this time, however, the focus is on a stamina bar instead of chaining up big combos, with every action expending stamina. Choosing to end the character's turn before all their stamina is used up speeds up that character's next turn and, conversely, going over the maximum available results in a delay for that character before their next turn. Power-ups can also appear to be collected in the battles, and maxing out the stamina bar gives a "Fever Time," which stops all enemy turns. It's a welcome change to the usual system.

The key mechanics aren't the only thing familiar thing here, as the flaws are familiar, too. For instance, there are a handful of levels and they're reused in every time period… Sure, there are some slight differences between time periods, but it's a sure way to make things begin to get dull very quickly after having to return to the same stages for the thousandth time to complete the latest "Go kill X of these things!" quests. Similarly, prepare for mammoth amounts of text, wall after wall; it can get a tad tedious.

Superdimension Neptune Vs. SEGA Hard Girls is somewhat short for a JRPG, but it's still nothing to be sniffed at, as there are over 25 hours of play here, and completionists will easily double that. For those playing through the story, though, there's a sense of, "Wait… that's it?" as the story comes to something of an abrupt ending surprisingly early.

Screenshot for Superdimension Neptune Vs. SEGA Hard Girls on PS Vita

Cubed3 Rating

5/10
Rated 5 out of 10

Average

There are few players out there that will fully appreciate this title, a crossover of two rather niche properties, with little to elevate it over the numerous other instalments in the series. The repetitive nature of the quests and the huge amounts of exposition are very off-putting. Hardcore Hyperdimension fans will already be picking this up, and long-time SEGA fans will find plenty of references to keep them entertained, but the core game leaves a lot to be desired.

Developer

Compile Heart

Publisher

Idea Factory

Genre

Turn Based RPG

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

Was a huge neptunia fan when it first came out, but literally EVERY GAME is the same.  I don't play them anymore.

Was a huge Neptunia fan once I got my hands on it, only become a bigger fan. Series has issues but I love it just the same. I really want to review this on the PC when I get the chance.

Suppose I should clarify as to why I've become a bigger fan.

There is no denying that the series has some massive flaws in repetition. Stuff that would make EA at least willing to pat it on the back. However... it's also one of the few series that I feel actually grasps the concept of 'fun' and, while there is no denying that they need some new material, when I can play a game where the main star is a girl who wants to become the overlord simply because she's cute, a game with a lesbian pairing I'm actively rooting for (Nepgear X Uni!) when I'm usually on the anti-gay side of the fence, and so-forth, I know I've found something worthwhile. Just because a game isn't OMG10/10Awesome doesn't mean I can't be a huge fan of it. I want them to get new material but I love the series regardless.

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