Soul Hackers 2
Soul Hackers 2 is an experience well-designed and is familiar but makes a mark distinct from the numerous entries in the SMT franchise.
The Shin Megami Tensei universe is vast and extensive with spin-offs which have become mainline games on their own due to growing popularity. One spin-off that didn’t have any recognition in the midst of all this has been the Devil Summoner game Soul Hackers, which was only released for the Nintendo DS before fading back into a minor side-game, with its few dedicated players. With it’s announcement that Soul Hackers 2 will be released, Soul Hackers 2, The chance for this spin-off spin-off to develop into something bigger is back in the air.
This story Soul Hackers 2 is set at the midpoint of 21st Century in which technology has slowed down and the society has followed the same pattern stagnating along. Through this constant stream of information, was born an entity called Aion who can envision a future in which the world will end. Then, Aion creates two agents, Ringo and Figue, to warn and stop this apocalypse. They then be caught in the middle of a battle between two groups of Devil Summoners The Yatagarasu along with The Phantom Society.
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As they travel they enlist the assistance from Yatagarasu agents Arrow, Phantom Society assassin Milady and the freelance Devil Summoner Saizo each character each with their own role in the story. Alongside Ringo and his friends, the four characters create an interesting dynamic that builds with a realistic pace throughout the main story and other scenes too. There are equal amounts of time devoted to their respective problems which relate to particular plot beats as well as Ringo being an unnamed fish as he tries to figure out what human really is similar to.
The four players will be the team for the entire game. Soul Hackers 2. is similar that is similar to turn-based games that which the SMT franchise is famous for and features a elegant user interface. Every summoner comes with COMP, which is an instrument that has the ability to hold the demon inside to be utilized for battle. Ringo is in control of every single one of them, which gives the summoners advantages to be further discussed.
There’s a myriad of demons that you can fight and collect. The ability to equip them on the team will provide them with weaknesses and strengths, and even alter their stats. Therefore, picking the most effective demons is essential. For the demons which the player battles they will face, each has weaknesses that are related to the various types of elements which can be used in the game. Physical, Gunfire Fire, Ice Electric, Force Ruin and the Almighty. They are weaknesses that must be taken advantage of, as they cause additional damage and also add an element of evil on the Sabbath.
Sabbath is a unique attack performed at the conclusion of each round for as the weakness can be taken advantage of. Every time a weakness is exploited the demon is added to the stack, and when the turn is completed when all the demons are in the stack will launch an attack across the entire party on opponents. The Sabbath system urges players to not take out enemies in the course of the round, but instead leave them with as little health feasible so that they could be eliminated all in one swift one swoop. There are also Tandem abilities, which are available by leveling demons that let the player benefit from Sabbath time more like treating the entire party or providing the players with MP contingent on the amount of damage done.
Of course, there is more that can be accomplished as demons progress and become more powerful, which is not difficult because the experience can be shared with demons that aren’t locked to the summoner of a particular type. As they progress they unlock more abilities which are then either incorporated or swapped out with those already present, or handed down through the demons that they are linked to.
To make the most effective utilization of your skills, it’s essential to incorporate what’s known as Mistiques which are essentially a supplement in the COMP which help improve certain skills. Mistiques are gifts from demons or through trade with a specific vendor. They may grant skills improvements like more power for skill or lower mana costs, and much more. But, Mistiques can only be crafted for those whose Affinity Rank is similar to those, and they is able to be upgraded in specific ways, but some characters’ affinities aren’t able to be changed. For example, Milady leans more toward the fire-based affinities, whereas Arrow is more inclined toward Ice-based.
Items, mistiques such as COMP upgrades, mistiques, and many more can be accessed via the hub worlds that can be explored in the game. If they are not in an dungeon, players is able to relax at the safehouse in which they can relax or eat meals to earn bonus points, or wander around certain areas of Tokyo which can be selected through an interactive map screen. There are numerous establishments and shops that line the streets, including Zanfiro in which one can get better gear to help during combat or Cirque du Goumaden, where players can combine monsters to create stronger, more powerful demons.
In most shops the players are only required to pay in cash to purchase items. In certain places like the shops within Mansei Realm where the player can upgrade their Comp and buy specific items currencies and demon material are needed, so grinding, like with every RPG is recommended.
The most popular place to be often visited by players is Club Cretaceous which is where the player is able to make specific requests that basically function as additional quests. They could be as simple as getting rid of a specific demon in a particular location, or could be story-related, with connection to the protagonists. Rewards can include things like money, experience, or new items to purchase at stores or even discounts at the stores.
The direction of art in the hub areas is stunning and goes deep into the cyber-aesthetic Soul Hackers 2 utilizes. Neon light streams with vibrant colors bursting from almost every angle. This making the walk through them an amazing spectacle, much like the character designs themselves.
But, despite the stunning images of the hubs the dungeons leave a bit to be wanted. In addition, the majority of the dungeons found in Soul Hackers 2 are boring and dull to look at, which is in stark contrast to the fashionablely constructed Ringo playing around in the dungeons. Two of the dungeons that are abandoned subways in which the only bright colors are the emergency lights. There are two dungeons worthy to be called visually intriguing.
One particular dungeon is referred to as The Soul Matrix, an ever-expanding space that grows as characters move around it. Three dungeons comprise The Soul Matrix, representing the three other characters. They’re divided into sections, and will grow as the story progresses. When the player is traversing them, they’ll be confronted with memories of this character and then, eventually, encounter obstacles, known as Gates Some of which have Guardians who act as mini-boss fighting.
Gates are only open if the player has their Soul Level for that character over a certain threshold. The Soul Level can be increased by games’ social components through either choosing specific dialogue lines that appeal to a particular character, or having them spend time with them in hangouts, which are earned by some means in bars in the area.
After the Gate is closed or its Guardian defeated and the memory inside is revealed, the player may choose the permanent summoner skill of the specific character. Summoner Skills vary from map-based abilities that allow the user to directly access the map screen, wherever they are to those better suited to combat, like an additional demon placed on the list when a particular vulnerability is discovered.
There are many ways to make sure your team is up and ready for any battle they might encounter, even though it could be a little hard to get through. If you encounter a particularly difficult opponent that is preventing progress, visiting the Soul Matrix, or any other dungeon actually, can give you the tools needed to make you stronger. The demons they collect also assist in these dungeons since they’re sent out to aid in recon. If they are found in the dungeons they will provide things, money as well as unlocks to hangouts and even the chance to recruit new demons for the team.
Despite the boring look and setting of these dungeons The music, however, compensates the lack of style. A variety of composers provide the soundtrack that is awash with techno for Soul Hackers 2, including Keiichi Okabe from Nier fame. As soon as one of the tracks starts to play it’s obvious that it’s always the mood to any event. Additionally to that, the entire soundtrack brings the right mood to every space perfectly.
Based on how the player is spending the time they have, Soul Hackers 2 can take between 40 and 60 hours to complete, yet it is never boring. Through each main dungeon, it’s almost normal to go back several times to increase the strength of the team’s performance as the difficulty of enemies increases with each level.
All in all, Soul Hackers 2 is an excellent fresh entry in the SMT franchise. It offers plenty of variations from its peers that it does not feel like the same game. With its amazing character cast, Soul Hackers 2delivers the story of a character that has lots of heart and heartbreak and a story that is relevant to the current world. Despite the drab dungeons, the battles are satisfying enough to compensate for it. Additionally, the music adds a nice touch to an already fashionable game. If you’ve ever wanted to try an SMT game, Soul Hackers 2 will definitely satisfy it.