After a not-so-spectacular debut on the PS Vita, Neptune and the other CPUs are making a return to the PS Vita in Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth1, a remake of the first game in the series, Hyperdimension Neptunia on the PS3. Re;Birth1, as the name indicates is almost as if the first title was reborn, and made with the same core story and elements, but with modern sensibilities and improvements added to make it an improved version of the original that you can play on the go with the PS Vita.
If you ever tried playing the very first game in the series, you may have found it less enjoyable than those which followed, due to dull looking dungeons, cumbersome exploring and quest management as a number of other flaws that would detract from the overall experience. From our early look at the upcoming Re;Birth1 for Vita, it looks like much of that has been stripped out and replaced with updated mechanics carried over from Neptuina Mk2 and Victory.
While you will still follow the same general storyline, quite a few things have been added to this updated retelling including redesigned dungeons and monsters to make them more in line with the art seen in Mk2 and Victory. The battle system from the latter games has also been used to replace the static one used originally. This means that instead of having to stay in one area and just take turns taking shots at the enemy from your static position, you can move around freely within the battle area and move in close to attack foes. Along with the updated combo system, EX Finishes and EXE Drive special attacks also have been added, giving you more abilities for you to use in fighting the monsters you’ll encounter.
The new content isn’t just gameplay elements carried over from the more recent HDN games though, completely new story events and features have been added to make the game feel like a new experience, even for those who had completed the original when it first came out all those years ago. The ‘Remake system’ in Re;Birth1 allows you to modifiy parts of the game to add extra dungeons to the world map, which weren’t available originally, change what monsters and items you’ll encounter and lots more. At some points, you’ll also see new characters such as Brocolli and Falcom, who will also be accompanied by new event scenes.
From what I’ve experienced so far, it looks like Re;Birth1 is shaping up to be a much better game than the original, especially after going back to the first one to refresh my memory to compare the two. Hopefully everything continues to feel this fresh once I get deeper into the game’s story and features.