Released for the first time in 1997 on the sega console SAWthe first “Soul HackersWas the second episode of the saga of Devil Summonerspin-off of the main series of Shin Megami Tenseiflagship of the house ATLUS. Skipping the versions Saturn And PlayStationSoul Hackers only arrived here in Europe in 2013, with the most recent port for Nintendo 3DS – to date one of the rarest and most sought after titles by JRPG collectors for the latest portable console produced in Kyoto. Exactly twenty-five years after the debut of the previous title in the homeland, the Setagaya team which in recent years has risen to prominence thanks to the incredible success of Person 5 is going to present to the whole world Soul Hackers 2, to be released all over the world between 25 and 26 August next. More than twenty days after its release we had the opportunity to get our hands on the title, playing it from the beginning and for the first handful of hours. Here’s what awaits us in just over three weeks.

Unlike what many of us could have imagined watching the trailers shared on the web by the publisher, Soul Hackers 2 does not try to imitate too much the fifth chapter of Person, neither as regards the basic structure, nor in the audiovisual style. Although it has some characteristics that unite it to the spin-off “cousin” already mentioned, it is more correct to compare it to the main series of Shin Megami Tenseiof which in the West we have recently been able to replay the third episode “Nocturne”And the unreleased fifth, released only on Nintendo Switch. It is a JRPG without a subdivision in days that will put us at the helm of a party of “Devil Summoner“(summoners of demons, in the Italian localization) consisting of a maximum of four characters. Despite this, we will find several elements in the game that will bring us back to mind Personas a system similar to that of the social link called “harmony”Which will be linked to the exploration of special dungeons linked to the various characters and to obtaining really useful passive skills.

The protagonist of the events is Ringoone of the two humanoid agents of the called technological life form Aiona kind of omniscient intelligence halfway between the electronic and spiritual essence. Alongside her we will find her “twin” Figue and we will see their genesis in the very first moments of the game: by warning an imminent danger to human society, Aion has decided to contravene his own principle of not interfering with it by sending the two avatars on his behalf to prevent the end of the world. Their mission will be that of prevent the death of two human beingsthe scientist Ichiro Onda and the summoner called Arrow.

Arrow in Soul Hackers 2

Once in the world of humans, the two will have to get used to their new form, and we will take the first steps in the first dungeon that will serve as a tutorial. Each of the summoners within our party will be equipped with a COMP, a special weapon in which a demon will be equippedthe same demons that we find in every title in the series Shin Megami Tensei. Each character, by default, will be accompanied by a starting creature, but as is customary for the saga of Megaten, we will be able to recruit new ones with dungeon exploration and negotiation – albeit in a slightly different way. Unlike the main series, however, the demons will not come directly to our side in battle, but will lend their skills to their human counterparts. (also affecting their stats) ideally similar to what happens in Persona.

Among the skills that Ringo will be able to use in the futuristic alternative Tokyo that we will be able to explore in some of the most iconic neighborhoods, revisited under cyberpunk keyfigure above all thesoul hackingsoul hacking, which gives the series its name. A practice that she herself still knows little about and which could cause devastating damage, according to Figua, allows her to enter the soul of a human being who has just passed away, observing her most important memories of her and somehow convincing them to come back to life offering them a second chance. But everything has a price that will have to be paid sooner or later.

Soul Hackers 2

To trigger the events that would lead to irreparable disaster would be the obscure organization of Devil Summoner call Ghost Circle (Phantom Society in original), whose purpose – I need to do it on purpose – is precisely to cause the end of the world. In their opposition we find the called faction Yatagarasuin which the co-protagonist plays Arrow, looking for a way to prevent the irreparable from happening. Continuing in their investigations, Ringo and Figue will discover the reason that could cause the catastrophe, but we do not want to dwell further so as not to spoil the surprise of finding out for yourself in the first hours of the game.

Leaving aside the dialogue sections and talking about actual gameplay, Soul Hackers 2 will be divided into exploratory phases that will take place in portions of cities that recall those of real Japan, such as Shibuya And Kabukichoat the operational base of the team – the so-called Refugebut above all of dungeons within which we will have to face demons and summoners in the classics turn-based combat that characterize this saga, in all respects similar to what we saw previously. In our turn in battle we will be able to decide the actions of each character, choosing from basic commands such as Skills (which include simple attacks And magic), Guard, Objects, Leak And Automatic attachment (with speed increase to favor the farming). To come to the rescue of the less experienced (but also of the laziest) there is also the voice Assistance, which tells the player which attack could make a given enemy vulnerable. Similarly toall-out-attack in person, also in Soul Hackers 2 we will be able to exploit the weaknesses of the enemies to chain combos, and at the end of each turn unleash “Tregenda”- Ringo’s special ability that will use all demons responsible for critical damage to obliterate the enemy party.

We tried Soul Hackers 2 in its version PlayStation 5on which you can select the two classic graphics options they preferat our discretion, the native 4K resolution or the frame rate of 60 FPS. The audio sector, on the other hand, provides both an audio track in the language Englishis the original one Japanese. All the texts of the game have been localized in Italian.

Soul Hackers 2

In the weeks that separate us from the release, we will gut Soul Hackers 2 up to beyond the credits, and we will talk about it in even more detail in the review phase. We remind you that the latest JRPG produced by ATLUS will see the light on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X | S, Xbox One and PC and with the pre-order of the digital version it is possible to obtain a set of downloadable costumes that will make the protagonists of the game look like Persona 5 Phantom Thieves. Stay on our pages to find out more about the promising one Soul Hackers 2coming to Europe next August 26.

Soul Hackers 2 – Image Gallery

SOUL HACKERS 2 – Experience the first few hours of the game