14 years is a long time between sequels, and if video game history has taught us anything, a long wait like this can very easily lead to disappointment. Thankfully, once the opening to NEO: The World Ends with You kicked in, I knew this was exactly what I’d been waiting for. Think about everything you’ve ever wanted from a sequel to that incredible Nintendo DS RPG – NEO: The World Ends with You delivers on all of that and more.
If you’re fuzzy on story details or, more likely, if you’ve never even played or heard of the original game, don’t stress. NEO: The World Ends with You is told from the perspective of a brand new set of characters who are just as oblivious to the events of the previous game as you are, if you’re a fresh face to the series. While plenty of important narrative threads and characters return in this direct sequel and diehard fans will appreciate all of it, there’s no need to catch up on anything to enjoy it. Much like the original game, this semi-standalone adventure is a hyper-stylish love letter to Japanese street culture and underground music that anyone can dive into and appreciate.
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Our new hero Rindo and his best friend Fret are hanging out in the bustling Japanese city of Shibuya when they’re suddenly flung into a not-quite-right version of the city, located somewhere known as the UG. There are monsters called Noise roaming the streets of this alternate Shibuya, and regular people equipped with pin-buttons can harness special powers to fight the Noise, or each other. It’s all part of the mysterious seven-day Game that Rindo and Fret find themselves in the middle of, but there’s so much more than that boiling under the surface.
The characters are absolutely one of the best parts of the experience. Rindo isn’t just a silent emo JRPG protagonist, he’s got a lot of layers, a head in the clouds, and his eyes glued to his phone – a little too relatable, but that makes his journey so much more engaging. His BFF Fret, meanwhile, is one of the most genuinely endearing and hilarious video game characters I’ve ever met. He oozes charisma and confidence, but also has the IQ of a peanut.. Anime-boy obsessed college girl Nagi and mysterious math wiz Minamimoto, your other two party members, are just as much of a delight. The four bounce off each other so well and their personalities shine whether you’re playing with Japanese or English audio. Both versions deliver voices and acting that blew me away – these aren’t just JRPG voice actors going through the motions, but rather delivering performances that genuinely fit the casual street-kid tone of our protagonists.
There are dozens of other unforgettable characters to meet, but I would argue that the most important character in the gamel is the city of Shibuya. You’ll travel across segmented regions of the cultural mecca as you progress through the game, but much like the small-yet-significant setting of Yakuza games, Shibuya is a living, breathing place. Every section of the city is littered with walking and talking pedestrians, whose thoughts you can read with the Scan ability. A lot of it is cute, meaningless fluff, but you’ll regularly be diving into these non-players minds to complete your missions.
Each character even has latent abilities they can use to manipulate these thoughts. Fret can send a reminder-blast through the whole city of a particular idea, Nagi can dive into troubled minds to defeat the Noise within, and Rindo can even time travel in order to relive moments of a chapter and make different choices. You’ve got so many different ways to interact with the people around you, and it makes every inch of the city feel so much more alive.
Eventually, it’ll be time to stop thinking and start fighting. One of the big things people rave about with the original The World Ends with You is the combat – a unique and addictive dual-screen action system that could only ever work on the Nintendo DS. It’s hard to follow up on the innovation and enjoyability of that gameplay, but NEO: The World Ends with You absolutely nails it. At first, combat is a bit button-mashy when you only have Fret and Rindo at your disposal. Once your party is filled out and enemies begin baring their teeth, though, the real depth of the combat system starts to show itself. Each character has their own pin, and a pin attack triggers a Groove timer – have another character land an attack within that timer, and you build your Groove meter while also setting up another timer for the next character to capitalise on. You’ll have to learn how best to best time your button presses in order to keep this rhythm going – some badges have you mashing a face button, while others require you to charge it up with a shoulder button.
Here’s one scenario: Rindo has a pin attack that immediately slashes at the enemy as you mash the square button, while Fret has a similar button-masher that launches bolts of lightning from afar. Nagi, meanwhile, can charge up a pin that launches a chainlink fence at an enemy to pin them down, while Minamimoto has a charge-pin that lets him slam a boulder down onto the enemy. If you just mash these buttons willy-nilly, you’re gonna get nowhere fast. Instead, you launch lightning-bolts as Fret while charging Nagi’s fence, then throw her fence when the Groove timer pops up, followed by using Rindo’s mash-attack at the same time as you charge up and, finally, cap the combo off with Minamimoto’s boulder.
There’s an insane amount of depth and strategy to explore with the combat in this game, and as you progress you’ll unlock new mechanics, pin slots, and hundreds of pins to further beef up your arsenal. It may not be the dual-screen bonanza of the original game, but the combat in this sequel is easily some of the most unique and rewarding action gameplay I’ve ever experienced.
You’ll earn experience in fights, but that only changes your max health. To develop your stats, you gotta eat. Constantly. Visiting eateries in-between battles is key for making your crew stronger, so long as you you pick the food everyone likes best and don’t overdo it. One of the stats all of these cheeseburgers and parfaits boosts is Style, which you need in order to unlock the special abilities that all of the clothing and accessories you buy come with.
Oh, and on top of all that there’s the Social Network System, a sprawling web of every character you meet in the game. Once you uncover a common relationship thread, the chain grows and you’re able to fulfill certain conditions to unlock new features or items from each character via Friendship Points. You know Fret, who knows the burger-shop worker, who knows a Reaper, who knows another Reaper, and so on. The unlockables you get from this, like bonus difficulty settings or additional gameplay abilities, are great, but I also love how it helps make the city and everyone who inhabits it feel that much more real.
There’s love and care put into every inch of NEO: The World Ends with You, and any cracks in the foundation are minor at best. Sure, there’s some difficulty spikes, and maybe the UI and menus aren’t as stylish as the rest of the game, but like I said, they’re minor cracks. The bottom line is this: NEO: The World Ends with You is just as effortlessly cool as the first one was 14 years ago, and Square Enix genuinely has one of the best action RPGs of the generation on their hands with this release. It’s been a long time since we’ve been able to visit the UG and hang out at the Shibuya 104, but the wait was most definitely worth it.
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NEO: The World Ends With You tells a good story, and has exceptional gameplay. Fans of the first game will enjoy it. Newcomers will surely want to hold out over Week 2, but stay for the tunes and the fights. I know I'm certainly glad I did.Do I need to play anything before NEO: The World Ends with You? ›
The short answer: No, you do not need to have played the original The World Ends With You to play NEO. However, you may enjoy NEO's story more if you do, or watch the anime that retells the original's story. Though the main characters are different, there's a lot of revisiting of the first plot.Why was NEO: The World Ends with You recalled? ›
Following an accidental leak of the full retail version of NEO: The World Ends With You, Square Enix is revoking licenses for the game, effectively scrubbing the game from their account until release date.Did The World Ends With You sell well? ›
Square Enix has stated that Neo: The World Ends with You has so far failed to meet its internal sales projections. Despite its critical success (the game currently sits between 80-82 on Metacritic depending on format), the game hasn't sold as well as the publisher had hoped.Is NEO: The World Ends With You connected to Kingdom Hearts? ›
Despite lots of fan theories saying otherwise, Kingdom Hearts 3 and NEO: The World Ends With You aren't connected to one another.Is NEO: The World Ends With You like Persona 5? ›
While it's true that there are a handful of comparisons between the two that can be made, The World Ends with You plays very differently than Persona 5. From the brief glimpses shown in the announcement trailer, it looks like NEO: The World Ends with You won't follow a traditional, turn-based JRPG gameplay style.How many hours of gameplay in neo the world ends with you? ›
When focusing on the main objectives, NEO: The World Ends with You is about 40 Hours in length. If you're a gamer that strives to see all aspects of the game, you are likely to spend around 104 Hours to obtain 100% completion.What the difference between neo the world ends with you? ›
The most obvious change is Neo: The World Ends With You being rendered in 3D instead of 2D. The game is still confined to a set amount of locations inside of Shibuya. It isn't a sprawling open-world game like some other recent Square Enix RPGs. There also isn't a camera system meaning that every angle is predetermined.How big is neo the world ends with you? ›
Storage: 15 GB available space.Why did Neo choose left door? ›
There are two doors. The door to your right leads to the source, and the salvation of Zion. The door to the left leads back to the matrix, to her, and to the end of your species.
The Analyst (Neil Patrick Harris) reveals that he revived Neo and Trinity to power a new version of the Matrix built on desire and fear — a desire for the things people don't have and fear of losing the things that they do.Did Brad Pitt turn down Neo? ›
Brad Pitt turned down the role of Neo in 1999's "The Matrix," a role that went to Keanu Reeves.Was neo Twewy a flop? ›
NEO: The World Ends With You failed to meet sales expectations, according to Square Enix's latest financial briefing, The sequel to the breakout 2007 Nintendo DS game, The World Ends with You, it contributed to Square Enix's overall lower game sales this year than in the same period last year.How many copies did neo sell? ›
Top 10 Software Sales.
|Title||NEO: The World Ends with You|
|Neo: The World Ends with You|
|Platform(s)||Nintendo Switch PlayStation 4 Microsoft Windows|
From the beginning, Kingdom Hearts was built on a crossover between Disney and Square Enix. Final Fantasy and animated Disney characters were interwoven throughout the game, appearing in all manner of locations.What to do after beating NEO: The World Ends with You? ›
- 5/5 Unlock Ultimate Difficulty.
- 4/5 Replay The Main Story To Collect What You Missed.
- 3/5 Go Shopping.
- 2/5 Boss Rematches And Report Gathering.
- 1/5 Take On Another Day.
Tetsuya Nomura: There is no connection between the two. The area seen in Kingdom Hearts III and the Shibuya in NEO The World Ends with You are two completely different places.Which Persona 5 ending is canon? ›
From the start, the Phantom Thieves had one goal: to change the world. By freeing the world from the clutches of Yaldabaoth, Joker and his friends accomplished that goal, making this the true, canonical ending of Persona 5.How many endings does Persona have? ›
The game has six endings of sorts - three bad, one good, and the true ending. If you want to see all of them we'd recommend waiting until after you've seen the true ending as the others contain some spoilers - just keep some game saves at appropriate points so you can revisit them once the game is over.
Like previous games in the series, Persona 5 Royal and Persona 5 have a New Game + mode, which unlocks after you finish the game. It allows you to carry over multiple things that you unlocked during your previous playthrough into a fresh run. Essentially, you can start a new story with a bunch of bonuses.What is the longest game in PS? ›
There is plenty of content to keep players engaged. Farming Simulator 19 is the longest game in PlayStation 4 history, with an average playtime of 143 hours.Why does Rindo wear a mask? ›
The mask is a parallel to the previous protagonist (Neku) wearing a symbolic item on their head to represent an aspect of their personality as a sense of distancing from other people. Specifically, Rindo prefers communicating through texting instead of speaking to other human beings face-to-face.How many endings does The World Ends With You have? ›
There are only two endings to focus on in NEO: The World Ends With You, which makes the game a bit easier to manage. The critical aspect is that getting the endings is a linear progression, and there's no need to search for hidden items, unlock critical events, or get to a special place to get them.Is Neo the world ends with you worth it Reddit? ›
NEO: The World Ends With You does a wonderful job recapturing what made this formula work so well on the DS, but in a more approachable way. If there's one game in this duology I'll ever find myself revisiting, it'll definitely be this one.Is Neo human or a program? ›
At the start of the series, Neo is one of billions of humans neurally connected to the Matrix, unaware that the world he lives in is a simulated reality.Who turned down the role for Neo? ›
Keanu Reeves is thankful to Will Smith for not taking the role of Neo in 'The Matrix. ' Reeves ended up featuring in the 1999 film by the Wachowskis, which is now regarded as one of the greatest science-fiction movies ever created.Who betrayed Neo in The Matrix? ›
Cypher justifying his decision to betray his friends and re-enter the Matrix. Cypher (born Reagan) was a redpill assigned to the Zion hovercraft Nebuchadnezzar under the command of Morpheus.Is Trinity or Neo The One? ›
Neo and Trinity are both “the One.” It's important to remember that the entire idea/concept of the One was a result of a systemic anomaly; one which was necessary to continue the overall function of the Matrix in general.Why can Neo see after he is blinded? ›
By going blind, Neo obtains a "third eye" through which he can perceive the true nature of things, instead of being fooled by their external appearances. It is this true sight that guides him through the climax of the series and allows him to defeat Agent Smith.
Yet, if their powers are tied up in one another, Neo himself may not actually be more powerful than he was when active as the sole One, or even as powerful as then. By the end of The Matrix Resurrections, Trinity and Neo appear to have the same powers and are now both The One within the virtual world.Why do they call him Neo? ›
Like every name in Matrix, also the name "Neo" is chosen with a deeper intention. "Neo" is a Greek prefix and means "new". As his name says, Neo gets a new identity in the film and becomes "The One".What did Agent Smith put inside Neo? ›
In The Matrix, after refusing to cooperate during interrogation by Agents Smith, Brown and Jones, Neo has a bug planted inside his body where the process jarringly played out like a rape; Smith placed the activated bug on the panicked Neo's abdomen as his cohorts held the latter on the table, leaving him helplessly ...Which actress turned down Matrix? ›
Did you know Lara Dutta was offered a role in The Matrix? Yes, you read that right and the actress turned it down. In a recent interview with Hindustan Times, the actress revealed why she said no to the film and said, "It was a tough time.Did Neo lose his memory? ›
The first footage and trailer for the upcoming The Matrix: Resurrections shows that Neo no longer has any memory of who he was or what he did previously, raising big questions as to what happened to make him forget.Why did they bring Neo back? ›
The filmmaker ultimately decided to bring back both Neo and Trinity as a way to attain some kind of comfort, and no doubt this is how many will feel seeing the two characters on screen once again after all these years.How much did NEO: The World Ends with You make? ›
The company booked net sales of 168.9 billion yen, an operating income of 29.1 billion yen, an ordinary income of 31.4 billion yen, and a net income attributable to parent company shareholders of 22.9 billion yen in the first half of the fiscal year 2022/2023.Is Neo played by Keanu Reeves? ›
One of Keanu Reeves' most popular and well known roles is playing Thomas Anderson, more commonly known as Neo in "The Matrix" film franchise.Should I play final remix before NEO? ›
Those who played a prior version of TWEWY and paid attention will be able to figure out what's going on in NEO fairly easily. But players who want to be completely up to speed need to complete Final Remix's A New Day episode first. The new content explicitly bridges the game's events to those of NEO.Did NEO World Ends With You sell well? ›
Square Enix president Yosuke Matsuda stated, “While NEO: The World Ends with You was well received by users, it has underperformed our initial expectations.” Weak sales of NEO TWEWY had long been suspected after the game's subdued debut in Japan back in July, and now we have the unfortunate confirmation.
When focusing on the main objectives, NEO: The World Ends with You is about 40 Hours in length. If you're a gamer that strives to see all aspects of the game, you are likely to spend around 104 Hours to obtain 100% completion.Is World's End Club worth it? ›
World's End Club isn't a bad game, yet it's not a good one either. It has a great deal that could have made for a compelling experience. However this is marred by some simplistic – yet – frustrating puzzle design, and a weak narrative.
In the first game, there are twenty-two days total in both the DS and mobile versions, while The World Ends with You: Final Remix adds a twenty-third day. In NEO, there are twenty-four days.Does NEO: The World Ends with You have multiple endings? ›
There are only two endings to focus on in NEO: The World Ends With You, which makes the game a bit easier to manage. The critical aspect is that getting the endings is a linear progression, and there's no need to search for hidden items, unlock critical events, or get to a special place to get them.What is the age rating for World's End Club? ›
What's more, it's not hard at all to see why it misses: it feels like a watered-down version of its creators' other games. Just have to look at the ESRB rating: it's rated T, whereas games like Zero Escape and Danganronpa had well-deserved M ratings.How Much Does World's End Club cost? ›
$38.94. Game is complete with cartridge case cover art and artbook. Sold by Nadamoor and fulfilled by Amazon. Shipping cost, delivery date, and order total (including tax) shown at checkout.How many endings does World's End club have? ›
There are two different endings, the first and the true, but you should be aiming to get to the true ending.How do you level up fast NEO: The World Ends with You? ›
- 6/6 Play The Demo.
- 5/6 Noise Grouping.
- 4/6 Unlock Hard Difficulty.
- 3/6 Don't Be Afraid Of Lowering Levels.
- 2/6 Maximizing Pin Collecting.
- 1/6 Don't Forget To Eat.
To earn money, you must sell the Pins that you acquire throughout the game, usually by completing quests and by defeating enemies in battle. Some of these Pins are in the game solely to be sold for money and these are probably the best ones to grind for if you want a lot of cash.