Soul Hackers 2 received quite a bit of attention from the Pure Xbox community when it was announced for Xbox back in February. Six months on, and we're now a week out from launch, with early reviews beginning to hit the web.
So, here's a roundup of some early reviews for Atlus' new JRPG, Soul Hackers 2.
I wandered into Soul Hackers 2 expecting a general sense of quality from Atlus, and ended up getting sucked into its world. While dungeon design can feel samey at times, it’s not enough to distract from the flashiness of the game as a whole. As usual, Atlus really nails the details; it was fun to hang out with this crew and see where things went.
Game Rant (8/10)
Overall, Soul Hackers 2 is a great new entry to the SMT franchise, offering enough differences from its comrades that it doesn't feel like the exact same game. With its wonderful cast of characters, Soul Hackers 2 delivers a story that shows plenty of heart as well as heartbreak, with a theme that resonates with today’s world. Despite the bland dungeons, the combat is more than satisfying enough to make up for it, and the music is just a bonus to an already stylish game. If there’s an itch to play an SMT game, Soul Hackers 2 is sure to scratch it.
PlayStation Universe (8/10)
Soul Hackers 2 feels like a budget title whose developers did the best with what they had. It's still a solid game with plenty to love that fans of the genre will certainly enjoy. A strong addition to the Shin Megami Tensei franchise with great combat and art direction only held back by uninspired dungeons and exploration.
Push Square (7/10)
Soul Hackers 2 is a competent Atlus JRPG that will tick a lot of boxes for fans of the genre, but it falls well short of being that next breakout star from Japan. With awful dungeon design and little else to do outside of them, it falls upon the engaging combat system and interesting enough narrative to pick up the pieces. It's by no means the next must-play JRPG, but there's just enough to Soul Hackers 2 that warrants a playthrough.
Soul Hackers 2 is, at its heart, a streamlined Atlus JRPG, serving as a great entry point for anyone new to the genre or the developer in general. The combat and dungeon delving are entertaining, if fairly familiar, and the charming cast of characters kept me interested all the way through its roughly 60-hour campaign. But a disappointing lack of creativity in its battle systems and a fairly shallow overarching story mean this newly resurrected series will need to do more if it wants to set itself apart amongst Atlus’ best.
Taken as a whole, however, Soul Hackers 2 is a mostly satisfying experience. The character interactions and stylish art help it stand out from the pack, and the smooth-flowing, fast-paced combat makes even some of the more annoying dungeons (I don't want to see another abandoned subway for a very long time) feel like less of a drag. Soul Hackers, as a series, has a lot of potential to further grow into its own unique experience the way Persona has. Soul Hackers 2, despite its flaws, is a very promising start.
Game Informer (6.5/10)
Throughout the 30 hours it took to hit credits, I kept trying to latch onto the elements that work. Soul Hackers 2’s saving grace lies in its main characters, each with a distinct personality that often clashes with the rest. Witnessing the group’s growth by putting their differences aside and opening themselves up to camaraderie was a joy. I loved their conversations about freelancing as Devil Summoners as much as the tough chats about the people they lost over a meal or a drink. But there’s not a seat on the table for the player to take it all in.
It's looking pretty good for Soul Hackers 2 then, even if it doesn't appear to be blowing anyone's socks off. The game is sitting at a respectable 77 on Metacritic, at the time of writing anyway!
Will you be jumping into this Xbox JRPG at launch next week? Let us know in the comments.