This game was a pleasant surprise. I’ve been with the Neptunia series since the first game, so the much higher difficulty in V caught me off guard several times. Each boss fight so far (I’m up to Chapter 3) pretty much ended up eating all my resources on hand and were won with a dead party member and the remaining at critical HP. Bosses also have tremendous HP and regen, so staying alive and remaining offensive is the only way to do things. I got my ass handed to during a particular fight after getting Blanc because It’s very easy to be underleveled for the next dungeon/boss since the dungeons are still small. Anyone expecting to breeze through things like in MK2 will get a nice wake-up call rather early on. Unfortunately this means “go grind.” Not that I mind since I like grinding here.
CPU mode is a nice balance between the first and second game. It eats up a set percentage of SP when you activate it and gives you a huge boost, but no longer drains SP per turn. Thus, it’s extremely useful for boss fights and strong enemies, but not broken so that you can spam it every turn. Combo system is similar to MK2’s.
Dialogue is as hilarious as ever, and they’ve ramped up the 4th wall-breaking, references, and innuendo. Plus Neptune is back as the superior main character, and Noire joins your party early and gets much time in the spotlight. Iris Heart is wonderful. Do-S characters bring out the best in everyone. All my party members have been CPUs thus far, so I’m excited to see the mascot characters. Especially Falcom-chan.
My major complaint so far is that monster drop rates suck. They are terrible. Even the risky enemies that only appear once or twice per dungeon have that shitty drop rate. Thus, fetch quests are frustrating as fuck.