Neptunia: Sisters Vs Sisters is the latest entry of the Neptunia series and follows a series of events centred around Nepgear and friends. After a call for help on the PC Continent beyond the sea, Nepgear and her friends investigate an abandoned laboratory only for Nepgear to wake up two years later after having fallen into a slumber by the Ashen Goddess. Her sister Neptune has gone missing and Planeptune has fallen to a Trendi outbreak where monsters have taken over due to the rising popularity of the latest Smartphone known as the rPhone.
The game takes place in a ravaged Gamindustri where Nepgear falls into depression after feeling as though she has lost everything. Neptune has gone missing and she decides to find her Sister after being told by her close candidates what has happened during her long slumber.
Neptunia: Sisters VS Sisters is a very familiar setting for anyone who has played the Neptunia games; even myself after being out of the loop for a few years the game feels all too familiar. The story is as basic but as Neptunia as you would expect, the world has fallen into disarray but the Goddesses still conversing about the latest rPhone whilst Nepgear is super upset that her sister is missing, the fanservice is still there and Compile Heart have still managed to push as much of that into the game as possible.
Neptunia: Sister VS Sisters is my first venture on PlayStation 5 into the Neptunia world and with that, I was intrigued to see how the game would look on current-gen hardware. Initially, the game does look great. Character portraits have never looked better and during cutscenes, the characters change emotions constantly whilst conversing and there are no still avatars on the chat boxes anymore. The game is also bright and colourful as you would expect from a Neptunia game. However, the gameplay is where it falters quite a bit.
Movement is fine but feels sluggish, there are no random encounters and enemies can be seen on the map meaning you can ignore them if you wish. You can also go into battle with the initiative providing you get the hit on the enemy beforehand. The issue is it’s hard to know if you even do it or have done it correctly. The game has a strange slow pause in-between battles that make it hard to keep up, at times I constantly felt like the game would crash on me because of this, even after winning a battle there is a pause before the final enemy disintegrates and all the text pops up on the screen with your rewards. A very different affair to 4 Goddesses Online which never felt like this. In all fairness, there were no battle transitions within 4 Goddesses Online but I feel like with the PlayStation 5 this transition should at least be smooth and not feel like a constant lag. I would also expect some inconsistency if I was running the game on an external hard drive but that’s not the case, I am running this off the PS5’s Internal SSD and I still don’t feel that the game is using its full potential.
The game does look good and for a PlayStation 5 game there are some positives, the game has a clean Interface, the Shadows are done correctly, the water graphics are pretty nice and there can be a lot of detail on the screen at any one time but again at times, it feels like there is some slow down even during times where I was just running across from one point to the next.
The systems in place can also be quite confusing. You create Discs using parts you find either from boxes and enemies you defeat. You then create these using a character to do them while picking a game genre for example, Horror or Sim. It doesn’t really make much sense and was never explained properly meaning it’s trial and error. Equipping these will give a boost to your character. There is also a cool down once you have created one meaning you will need to wait before creating another.
You can perform moves in battle and assign them outside of battle as combos, you learn new ones as you level. These are pretty basic and self explanatory so no issues there. AP in battle decreases as you use moves and trying to do anything at 0 AP will result in your controlled character doing nothing, it replenishes over time so switching characters is always a good idea often if you want to get the most output. Of course it would not be a Neptunia game without the girls transformations and having these all powerful moves to finish your enemies off is no exception here.
Neptunia: Sisters VS Sisters also has a big emphasis on fashion. You will constantly find accessories to dress your party up with by smashing boxes open. Nearly all of the favourite characters make a return with some new characters which I am positive any Neptunia fan will fall in love with.
Overall Neptunia: Sisters VS Sisters is a good game, it’s far from perfect. It’s a Neptunia game after all, for me they are a guilty pleasure and if you are a fan of the series overall then you’ll find more than enough fan service here, including many of the awesome music tracks, I mean if it’s not bad why change it?
A PlayStation 4 Review Code was provided by Idea Factory International