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European cover art
European cover art
Hyperdimension Neptunia (超次元ゲイム ネプテューヌ Chōjigen Geimu Neputyūnu , lit. "Super Dimensional Game Neptune") is a 2010 role-playing video game developed by Idea Factory and published by Compile Heart (distributed by Sega) in Japan and NIS America in North America and Tecmo Koei in Europe exclusively for Sony's PlayStation 3. The game is a take on the seventh generation era "console war" among the three major consoles: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii. It was shown at a closed door event during the Game Developers Conference 2010 on March 2010 in San Francisco. The game was released on August 19, 2010 in Japan, in North America on February 15, 2011, in Europe on March 4, 2011, and in Australia on March 31, 2011. A television anime series adaptation, titled Hyperdimension Neptunia: The Animation, began airing in July 2013.
Two sequels, Hyperdimension Neptunia Mk2 and Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory, have also been released. Another game, titled Ultradimension Idol Neptune PP (神次元アイドル ネプテューヌPP Kamijigen Aidoru Neputyūnu PP ), was released on June 20, 2013 for the PlayStation Vita, developed by Compile Heart, Idea Factory and Tamsoft. Two more games for the Vita were announced: Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth 1 (a remake of the game, released on October 31, 2013 in Japan) and Chou Megami Shinkou Noire: Gekishin Black Heart (超女神信仰ノワール 激神ブラックハート) with Noire as the main character, to be released sometime in the near future. During a streamed interview at Tokyo Game Show 2013, Idea Factory and Compile Heart announced that Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth 2 is currently under development, in addition to another presently unnamed future Neptunia title. Re;Birth 2 is due for release on 20 March 2014.
The game's name is derived from the scrapped Sega Neptune which combined the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive and Sega 32X into one unit, originally scheduled for release in 1994 or 1995 before the project was dropped after the release of the Sega Saturn.
This game is in essence a story-based adventure game, in the sense that much of the game is spent reading the on-screen text, as in a visual novel. However, the game also features 3D-style dungeon exploration, similar to recent Final Fantasy titles. Like most JRPGs, the dungeons feature random encounters, treasure chests, and various obstacles. These obstacles can be cleared by utilizing the various unique dungeon skills each character of Neptune's party has.
During battle, the current turn for characters and enemies are displayed at the top right, as well as upcoming turns. When it is Neptune's turn or any other supporting character's turn, they are given a set amount of AP (Ability Points), which determines how many moves they can make. Each different move consumes a set amount of AP. There is a Sword move, which has the character slash an enemy with their weapon, a Gun move, which has the character shoot the enemy with their weapon (or in Neptune and IF's case, a gun), a Physical move, which has the character go straight up to an enemy and punch and kick them, and the Defend command, which consumes no AP, but puts the character in a defending state and ends their turn.
When using a Gun move, the circle next to the Combo Counter on the right displays your current bullet. When the game starts, you will have a default bullet. However, as the game progresses, Neptune and the party will obtain other types of bullets, and you can switch between them during combat with the shoulder buttons. Different bullet types usually have special effects or elemental powers.
Each enemy has a GP gauge, as well as an HP gauge. When that enemy is attacked, the GP gauge will decrease. When the gauge is empty, Guard Break mode will activate. During this time, that enemy will receive more damage than usual until the GP gauge refills.
What sets this game apart from other RPGs is the Game Disc System, which allows Neptune and company to perform various special actions through special combos, accessible and editable through the pause menu. Neptune can summon characters from classic video games by initiating the combo assigned to that game disc, and it will inflict higher than normal damage. Neptune can also activate a transformation state, which is called HDD (Hard Drive Divinity). This transforms Neptune into a much more powerful state, and she will gain access to two additional moves, both of which deal massive damage. Although the default transformation is Purple Heart, Neptune can also install other game discs to change her transformation. Finally, she can also use the game discs to summon an image, which appears on-screen, then inflicts higher than normal damage on the opponent. Although the default image is blank, one can change the image by using pictures in the PlayStation 3 photo library.
While a player is viewing the region screen, you can shop for additional weapons and accessories, transfer to another region through a dungeon excursion, view any side quests, and enter dungeons.
The game takes place in the world of Gamindustri (ゲーム業界 Gēmu gyōkai ), which is divided into four regions: Planeptune, Lastation, Lowee, and Leanbox. Each region is completely different from the others, and has a Basilicom where the citizens worship their country's goddess.
The player takes on the role of the main protagonist Neptune, one of four goddesses who is involved in a long series of conflicts known as the Console Wars. After an incident where Neptune is defeated following a one on three battle with the other goddesses, she loses consciousness and begins dreaming. Upon waking, she finds herself at Compa's house having crash landed earlier in front. Neptune reveals that she can't remember anything up to that point, which leads Compa to believe that Neptune is suffering from amnesia. After hearing from Compa that monsters have began to run loose, Neptune decides to go hunt them along with Compa. Diring her first hunt, she suddenly transforms into her HDD form, Purple Heart, and defeats a large monster. Eventually the two meet IF, who explains that she is looking for treasure, and Neptune invites IF to join their party. After clearing another dungeon full of monsters, the party heads to the Basilicom to gain permission to travel to other landmasses to fight more monsters.
After having fought over Share energy for many years, the Goddesses signed a treaty which forbids each from taking Share energy from the other using forceful means. As a result of Neptune's laziness, Planeptune's shares steadily decline, and Histoire sends Neptune off to find a way to remedy the situation.
First appears in Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory, and also appears as a protagonist within the anime. She is the goddess of Planeptune within the V dimension, and is based on the Mega Drive. Lazy and always tired like Neptune, Plutia is calm, friendly and nice, and values friendship. Her personality completely changes when she transforms into Iris Heart, becoming sadistic and cold.
First appearing in Hyperdimension Neptunia Mk2, she performs a supporting role within the anime as the younger sister of Neptune. She has a caring personality, and is adept at handling technology. She represents the Game Gear.
First appearing in Mk2, she is the younger sister of Noire, who she strongly admires. Due to this admiration, she develops an inferiority complex. She has a deep friendship with Nepgear within the anime. She represents the PlayStation Portable.
First appearing in Mk2, she is one of the younger sisters of Blanc, who is more talkative and bold than her twin sister Rom. Ram and Rom represent the Nintendo DS.
First appearing in Mk2, she is one of the younger sisters of Blanc, who is more shy and timid than her twin sister Ram.
First appearing in Victory, Peashy is an infant with strong physical strength, and an artificial goddess. During the anime, she has a teary rollercoaster relationship with Neptune. She represents the PC Engine.
A talking mouse, and an antagonist. Assistant of Arfoire.
Self-professed "protector of little girls worldwide", within the anime she acts as a reporter who aims to uncover stories relating to little girls.
First appearing in Victory, Anonydeath is another antagonist within the anime series. Depicted as a hacker working behind the scenes, he is hired to perform jobs by an unnamed client. He is a male who behaves and talks in a feminine manner, and has an obsession with Noire. He is responsible for the hacking of Lastation's servers (a reference to the 2011 PlayStation Network hacking incident).
Originally taking the guise of an anti-goddess activist, she reveals herself as the final antagonist towards the end of the anime, being in reality the goddess of the former nation of Tari, a reference to the Atari 2600. Her plans to destroy the world are thwarted by the protagonists.
An antagonist who kidnaps Ram and Rom within the anime.
A giant robot-like being that likes to lick little girls.
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Nao, from 5pb. Records, performs the opening of the game. The theme of the game, Ryuusei no Bifrost (流星のビヴロスト, lit. "Bifrost of Meteors" or "Meteor Bifrost") was released on a single album, along with the song Sincerely. Both songs are available on the album Prismatic Infinity Carat.
The theme song of the PlayStation Vita remake Re;Birth 1 is Miracle Portable Mission by nao.
Various different types of DLC exist for Hyperdimension Neptunia, including character, quest, and item downloads. In total, $98 of DLC was released for the game in the United States.
Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth 1 is the enhanced remake of the game for the PlayStation Vita. In addition to completely reworked visuals, new music and voice acting, various gameplay aspects and plot details have been modified. Some characters from the original game were removed, such as Gust, whilst new characters were added, including the CPU candidates; Plutia from Hyperdimension Neptunia V will be playable as a DLC character. The original continent travel system involving dungeons has been scrapped in favour of a world map system similar to that of Hyperdimension Neptunia mk2, and the dungeon and battle systems also based on a style reminiscent to that of mk2.
A manga series based on the game titled Choujigen Game Neptune: Megami Tsuushin (超次元ゲイム ネプテューヌ ~めがみつうしん~) began serialisation in November 2010 within the Famitsu Comic Clear.
A manga series illustrated by Mikage Baku which complements the television animation, titled Hyperdimension Neptunia: The Animation - Hello New World (超次元ゲイム ネプテューヌ THE ANIMATION はろーにゅーわーるど), began serialisation within the June 2013 issue of Dengeki Maoh. A spin-off novel of the anime, titled Hyperdimension Neptunia TGS Hono no Futsukakan, was published by MF Bunko J and released 25 May 2013.
An anime adaptation was produced by David Production of Japan and directed by Masahiro Mukai. Series composition and script writing are done by Shogo Yasukawa and a musical score composed by Hiroaki Tsutsumi, Kenji Kaneko and Masaru Yokoyama. Character designs are done by Hitomi Takechi, based on the original designs by Tsunako along with art direction by Masanobu Nomura and sound direction by Jin Aketagawa. The twelve episode series premiered on Tokyo MX on July 12, 2013 and were later aired on BS11, KBS, Sun TV and tvk. The series was acquired by Funimation for online streaming in North America with English subtitles. The opening theme is "Dimension tripper!!!" by Nao and the ending theme is "Neptune☆Sagashite" (ネプテューヌ☆サガして) by Afilia Saga. "Go→Love&Peace" by Ayane is used as the ending theme of episodes 3 and 4, in addition to "Ito" (糸) by Afilia Saga on episode 10.
The game received average to negative scores. GameShark gave the game a D, stating that "the concept for the game is at least interesting", but also stated that "Hyperdimension Neptunia is a mediocre action role-playing game that cannot stand on its own two feet." Eurogamer gave it a 2 out of 10, stating that it is "a sexist, senseless, and ultimately stupid cultural curio." Bailey from GameSpot gave the game a 3/10, criticizing mostly the oversexualized character design and "truly awful music". On the other hand, IGN gave the game a 6.0 out of 10, praising its decent length and lack of need for level grinding, but criticizing the game's easiness and music.