Mugen Souls Z is a Japanese Role Playing Game developed by Compile Heart and co produced by GCREST, NIS published it in America and is due to be released on May 20th 2014. Mugen Souls Z is based off of the first Mugen Souls with many fixes and improvements. One of the many improvement is that it doesn’t take as long to power up your characters. Here is our review of Mugen Souls Z.
When I first heard about Mugen Souls Z, I was very excited, mainly because I wanted to try the first one and never did. When I heard about this upcoming title on its way, with improvements and fixes then I knew I had to finally play it. Mugen Souls Z is your typical JRPG, and what I mean by that is that the characters and situations are something you expect out of any JRPG. We first meet the “Undisputed” Goddess Lady Chou-Chou who has finished her quest of taking over the 7 worlds but finds out there is another galaxy with 12 worlds in it and she must go there with her Peons to conquer all of those worlds because this is the “Undisputed” Goddess Lady Chou-Chou and she must have it all. We then meet Nao who is a Hero on her quest to find the legendary weapon in rose world and comes across a Coffin, in that Coffin the Syrma. Syrma is the True Ultimate Goddess, the two then come across Lady Chou-Chou and well the rest is up to you to see for yourself. The rest of the story is hilarious and fun! I really liked the story and while I played it made time go by so fast that I didn’t even realize I was playing for hours on end.
What is any RPG without the battle system? Well it wouldn’t be a very good one I can tell you that. Mugen Souls Z has a fun and quick loading battle system. You can see your enemies on the overhead map and you can attack them giving you the preemptive strike or if they touch you from behind then they will have the pre emptive strike. Once in battle you are able to move your characters around in a circle radius some characters can have a further move then others, and it make take two turns in order to get to the enemy but once there you may attack, cast spells, or use special moves. There are also crystals on the battlefield which will give you bonuses to stats or it could also hinder you, so character placement and environmental awareness is key. Normally you don’t need to do any special moves unless fighting a boss but nevertheless they are there for your enjoyment if needed.
Syrma gains a few different actions within the first hour or so of the game, she is able to captivate the enemies, either turning them into items, peons, or enraging them which will give them full health and enrage them. If you are able to captivate an enemy your coffin will grab them, then it will do a special ability like attacking, healing, and more, there is about 8 or so options that you can have the coffin do when this happens, but you must chose what it does before you captivate the enemy. Syrma may also change personalities in order to match the enemies that way she will have an easier time captivating them. This adds more fun to the game and battle system! There is also a damage carnival meter that once filled will spew out more damage to the enemy, this damage could be in the millions but starts out very low. There are more things to do that would be better explained by the game, only because I don’t think I fully understood what was going on, one downfall which is too much to learn in a short period of time. Honestly I am not even sure if half of what I learned was even useful or not, I barely used it.
The ship you are going around in is called G-Castle, this ship can also transform into a mech that you can upgrade throughout the game. When you get into G-Castle battles it is a glorified Rock, Paper, and Scissors game and actually quite fun at that. I am a huge mech fan so whenever you add something like this to a game you are just asking for brownie points from me. Keep in mind though if you don’t upgrade G-Castle you will have a tough time later in the game so keep that in mind. G-Castle also has an area called the Mugen Field this is a place that you go into and will fight enemies with a progressing difficulty and moving up the ladder. There are “break” areas at levels 10, 30, 60, and 100; each area has treasure, some sort of vendor, also an optional boss that will pound you down early on. You will be able to take advantage of this later in the game because early on you are just too weak. You can also spend points you receive here to upgrade your characters spells, skills, and level caps. This will take a while to achieve but at least it is fun doing it!
So you think this is it for this JRPG? WRONG! There is also a character creation vendor. Yeah you heard me! You can make your very own peons to do battle with, at the beginning I believe I had 3 classes to choose from but as you play you can unlock more classes and better yet you can fuse these characters together so you can make a mage that is good with physical attacks or a gunner who can cast spells also. The options are almost limitless and you can have fun making your very own characters!
For those of you who may be asking yourself… Yes there is a New Game + in Mugens Souls Z just like the first. So hitting that 9,999 level cap should be easy for you hardcore players!
For a PlayStation 3 game Mugen Souls Z looks very good, the drawn art style of the characters when in dialogue is great! Everything you would expect from a game being published by NIS. Most of the time the characters lips synching with the voice acting, one gripe I had but ignored mainly because I read the text instead of listening to all of the dialogue.
When running around the world map and while in battles the graphics are ok, not as gorgeous and the drawn artwork. The character renders are smaller “kid like” versions of the characters and the weapons are overly huge and over done, in my opinion makes it a lot of fun because as we all know this isn’t a serious RPG. The world map isn’t anything to brag over either, it’s plain and nothing really stood out. Some levels are VERY colorful and that made me coming back for more. Mainly because each level design was different and I couldn’t wait to see what was next. I have to say I loved the color pallet that was used for this game. Bright and colorful worlds made it an upbeat and fun game to play!
The monster design was wickedly awesome, I never got bored of seeing new creatures to fight each one with its own color pallet and look. Games like this can get boring if you are fighting the same creature over and over again with a different color pallet but Mugen Souls Z didn’t really suffer from that problem. Don’t get me wrong some monsters did have different color pallets but it wasn’t often enough to bother me.
If I have to hear Ryuto say “Watch me Lady Chou-Chou” one more time I may have to cut my own ears off with a samurai sword. While in battle every character has a voice over when they attack and unfortunately they say the same thing over and over again. Most of the time it is grunts but some characters have a line and it is driving me mad! There may have been a way to remove it or change it but I didn’t find or know of a way to do it. With that being said, please fix this Compile Heart, this is the one major problem I had with this game, the constant repeated sayings.
The music in the game isn’t anything to write home about. It is fun and upbeat most of the time and it almost tries to get into the feelings of the characters most of the time, at least that is how I saw it. I enjoyed the sound track and wouldn’t mind listening to it when I’m out of the game.
There is an option to change the voices from Japanese to English. I mostly played on English just because the Japanese voices annoy me and I don’t care for it, I know most people will hate on me for that but it’s just the way I am. I thought I would mention this just because there are more people out there like me and would want to know if you can change between Japanese and English voice over.
As I played through this game I thought about how much I have enjoyed my time with it. I really loved this game! From the characters to the story to the battle system it was all fun. Well, except for a few of the characters that got on my nerves I really enjoyed the character design and everything else. The battle system was great and the G-castle battles were simple but fun all at the same time.
The game was very overwhelming at times and I could see how it would confuse new comers to RPGS, I would not recommend playing this game if it is your first dive into an RPG. There is a lot of tutorials on in game mechanics and I felt that some of them didn’t quite explain some of the functions 100% and left me wondering if I was doing something right. I wish they were a little more descriptive. There is a person in game to talk to for help but as usual I couldn’t find the answer to my questions, but all in all this was a fun dive into my first Mugen Souls game.
I’m sorry I can’t comment on the fixes to the game from the first one because I did not play it. But I didn’t find many problems and not enough to ruin the experience for me. If you were on the fence about getting this, please just buy it and jump right in! I know you will love it!
Publisher: NIS America , Developer: Compile Heart
Release Date: U.S. May 20th 2014 – EU May 23rd 2014
Platforms: PlayStation 3 Digital: Yes
Price: $49.99 US/ £39.99 EU- Rating: ESRB: T PEGI: 16
This game is Single player only
*Review copy provided by NIS America