Same story with a new perspective
“Hacker’s Memory? What’s that?”
Digimon Cyber Sleuth: Hacker’s Memory is a game that released in Japan of 2017, and the rest of the world in 2018. The game is an RPG that takes place in the same story and universe of the original Cyber Sleuth, but through the eyes of a different cast of characters. Being a fan of Digimon and having played the original, I decided to grab myself this game to see what it would have to offer. Thankfully, I was not disappointed with what I was given. So lets talk about what the game has to offer.
The story takes place in a semi-futuristic Japan, as our hero(?) Keisuke is a member of the hacker team Hudie. His reasons for becoming a hacker and joining the team was because prior to the events of the game, someone had stolen his account in a VR Server known as “EDEN,” and having your account stolen basically means that you’re an outcast. He decided to get himself a Digimon, programs that assist people with hacking, at the black market. But things start to go down south as he was about to be attacked by one of the owners of the market. That is, until the leader of Hudie, Ryuji Mishima, came in and helped Keisuke and his partner Digimon of choice defeat and settle the misunderstanding. After a brief chat, Keisuke decided to become join Ryuji’s team, in hopes that he will find the person who stole his original account.
At its core, Digimon Cyber Sleuth: Hacker’s Memory is an RPG, so be prepared for a pretty long game. You run around in both the real world and EDEN to progress the story, whether it’s taking on requests by people on the Hudie Bulletin Board, battling other hackers or Digimon that are causing trouble, etc. Digimon come in all shapes and sizes, though early on you’ll be facing off the weaker Digimon; specifically the Baby and In-Training forms. (Or as the game calls them, “In-Training” and “In-Training II”) As you encounter Digimon in battles, you’ll gain a certain amount of data depending on its form and, once you have at least 100% data, you can go to the Digi-Lab and convert one to add to your party. Though you can have a maximum amount of 11 Digimon in the party, the actual amount is depending on the Party Memory you have available. Though it starts off relatively small, you’ll find items along the way that boost your party memory up bit by bit, so be on the lookout. Digimon also come with four Types and nine Attributes. This may sound a bit tricky to understand, but thankfully it doesn’t take long to learn what’s strong against what. In certain parts of the game, however, you’ll be put into battles known as Domination Battles, a type of battling system introduced in Hacker’s Memory, where you and two allies try to complete a certain objective, whether it’s gaining the most points, defeating the opposition, etc. I personally like the gameplay that this game has, essentially taking what made the game work in the previous game, while also adding some variety to make it less stale. And there’s over 300 Digimon to discover, including the new ones that were added to Hacker’s Memory.
The game’s biggest strength, in my opinion, are the characters. Though Pokemon and Digimon have been talked about in the past, one thing that Digimon fans say a bit is that while Pokemon may have the better games, Digimon has the better story and characters. And with characters like the ones introduced in Hacker’s Memory, I can see why. Though returning characters from the original game do show up, it’s more focused on the life and times of the ones introduced in this installment. And they’re all pretty likable, with their own distinct personalities and whatnot. Plus, some characters from the previous game get a little more time to shine, such as the two main characters Arata and Nokia, which is really nice to see.
In the end, Digimon Cyber Sleuth: Hacker’s Memory is a great game that I recommend to be in anyone’s PS4 or PSVita library. And with the Digimon Cyber Sleuth Complete Edition coming out in October for other systems like the Nintendo Switch and PC, this would give both games a better chance of being known. Trust me when I say you won’t regret it.