Hyperdimension Neptunia: Producing Perfection Review

Management games are a tricky genre to create for. There are many subtle areas that need to be maximized in order to generate the most fun and addiction for the player. Hyperdimension Neptunia: Producing Perfection on the PlayStation Vita is an idol management game, starring the cast of the Hyperdimension Neptunia series. Were all those subtleties produced to perfection, or is this a case of the idol needing a better manager?

Although not an RPG like the others in the series, this game is continuing the same trend of not trying to take itself seriously, and poke fun at gamer and otaku culture. Right away, if a person knows zero about Japan then this game is just going to zoom over their head, as the story revolves around the characters becoming idols to defeat the MOB48 idol group who have taken their market shares. AKB48 is a famous mega-idol group in Japan, thus where the name comes from, and even references to their games are added during random parts of the story. Hyperdimension fans who may not get the new references and in-jokes will at least be steeled and appreciate them, while those who are new to the series are going to be in for a headache for not knowing what is being talked about.

The gameplay is very simple. You are the androgynous protagonist summoned through another dimension to be one of the cast’s producer to help them get the most market shares, and be the top idol. To achieve this goal, you have a menu of different options to select. Training, publicity, resting, interacting with the idol or others, and putting on performances are what are available. It is a simple formula. Build up her stats, rest when she is tired, gain her trust, put on an awesome concert, get new fans, lather, rinse, repeat.

Sadly, that is it. There are not many options for those hardcore management fans who enjoy balance sheets and micromanagement. Also, with no difficulty settings there is very little to go wrong in the game, making it more of a casual game for the ride to school or work. With that said, during the actions like doing publicity, there is a lot of story and text. It keeps its RPG roots by literally having more text and story than some full-fledged RPGs, and also tries to keep the atmosphere light-hearted and fun with its unique humor.


Most of the fun, and replayability, comes from the new game plus. As you can only manage one character per playthrough, not counting duos and trios that can happen by random chance or design, there are four different storylines to play through. Also, there are multiple endings for each character. The other slice of fun comes in the form of the concerts, which can be performed in the main story or in a separate mode. Granted, there is not much to be done during a concert as the dancing and singing is done for you. However, for those who enjoy dress-up games, there is the option of dressing your favorite character up in different costumes for the performance. For the rest of the concert you’re tasked with changing camera angles and setting off stage effects to boost your score, which affects the idol’s fans, stress and guts levels after the performance. Do a great job and see those fans come in droves, and see her hit single rise in the charts.

Graphically, there is not much to talk about. 95% of the game is on a menu screen, with the portrait of your idol staring back at you. The other 5% is during a concert, which has the same graphical capabilities as Hyperdimension Neptunia: Victory. It would have been nice to see the character’s anime versions rather than their 3D versions as the ones doing the dancing, but that is more personal preference as the hardware is not even pushed in the slightest. It would have set it apart from other games, and give it that extra flair to make-up for some of its shortcomings.

The ending credits to the game deserve special mention because of how creative they are. The amount of fan service and references to past video games through the generations is enough to boggle the mind, leaving old-school gamers scrambling for their notebooks to match them all up. The theme, Perfect Quest by Ayane, is a relaxing, mellow tune that makes the player feel fulfilled that the game was completed, and also puts an emphasis on the fun in video games, despite how others have viewed the Hyperdimensions series in the past.

This is a game made for fans of the series, first and foremost. Management fans would get some fun out of the title, but with all the in-jokes, references, and fan service, it is not ashamed to be for a certain niche of fans. Still, it would have been nice to have some more options to the sim elements as there is not much keeping even fans from coming back over and over again.



The Final Word

A fun piece of fan service for those who enjoy the Hyperdimension Neptunia series, and management games. The amount of options in-game are light, but the musical score and humor make up for it.