Combining the elements of an interactive narrative and JRPG sounds like a great idea on paper. Throw that idea into a world that parallels the video game industry, and have it developed by two studios with 14 years of experience within the same series, and the final result is bound to be a strange accumulation of the varying parts. Neptunia: Sisters VS Sisters is exactly that — a strange experience, but one that’s muddied by different components that don’t ever fully come together.
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At its core, Sisters VS Sisters is a tale of Goddesses and Goddess Candidates, those who will eventually take the mantle of a Goddess, and their intertwining relationships and fates. It closely follows the Goddess Candidate Nepgear, who can be viewed as the main protagonist, but switches between perspectives quite often.
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The game thrusts its narrative to the forefront early on, as the player will quickly come to recognize the vast cast of characters, their bubbly personalities, and the foreshadowed conflicts of their world. The sheer amount of characters is perhaps one of the few positive elements of Sisters VS Sisters. The player will witness long-winded sequences of dialogue that will set the dynamics of each character, and after a conflict is revealed, explore a dungeon in which they can fight enemies with their party.
Once entering these dungeons, the player will have the ability to switch between 8 playable characters within their set party of three. There are some limitations to when a player can access each member, but a majority of the Goddesses are available for most of the 20-hour playthrough. This grants some freedom to the player to explore each character’s play style, whether they be a mage that focuses on long-range damage or a hammer-wielding Goddess that takes the fight to the enemy. Though, that freedom has little depth as the game’s surrounding features limit each character’s potential and lack…