It seems like most JRPGs these days don’t really dive into hard science fiction. Sure, big franchises like Final Fantasy or Xenoblade don’t mind combining some technologies with their magic, but rarely do you see developers fully committed to a world of robots and computers. In this regard, Jack moves is a breath of fresh air. What we have here is a concise, well-paced and purely traditional JRPG set in a cyberpunk universe. It’s surprisingly creative and a lot of fun to play through.
Jack Move takes place in the near future, a cyberpunk society where governments are effectively powerless and giant corporations reign supreme. You will play as Noa, a hacker chipper who regularly participates in attacks on corporations and sells sensitive information on the black market. Noa and her accomplice, Ryder, are simply going about their business as usual when she receives a text message from her estranged father, who warns her that a corporation called Monomind could be spying on her for something he’s working on. Soon after, Monomind kidnaps her father, starting Noa and Ryder on their quest to free him and get to the end of his latest research project.
It’s a well-paced storyline throughout, and this is greatly aided by strong world building along the way. Conversations with NPCs help form a sense of everyday life in a place like Bright Town, while cute slang like “Digits!” or “Gigafloppin’!” Exclamations of the characters help imbue the world with some personality. Character development is a bit shallow given the relatively short length of the entire story, but it’s hard not to get sucked into the world of Jack Move because of how engaging it is for players. There’s clearly a lot of effort to add in the little details and vignettes to round out the experience, such as an NPC that Noa constantly engages in friendly insult matches and all these little details add up to create something with real texture and meaning.
Combat follows a traditional turn-based hitting structure, although there are interesting wrinkles that you only have one party members for the entire duration of the game. Noa is a capable fighter, but she has to be an effective backup for herself in all her battles, which has resulted in the inclusion of a ‘soft’ job system that makes her become quite flexible. Noa’s available skills and actions are dictated by the RAM available in her deck, with each action taking up a certain number of blocks. You can only tweak some of the tasks in your available RAM at any given time, but you can ‘Patch’ at any turn to swap in or out abilities as needed. For example, we started a tough boss fight with a few key debuff skills ready to suppress their stats, then swapped in some buff skills to enhance our own. , then perform attack actions to destroy them.
Most fights against common enemies don’t really last long enough to require a lot of swapping in and out of RAM, but we appreciate how intelligently this system manages to stay still. feels like having a party while fighting with only one character. Noa has always felt capable of facing the challenges she faces, even when she is comfortably outnumbered and takes only one action for every two or three actions that the attackers take. enemies can use. In addition, Yellow sun-The great idea of giving and receiving your character changes in the middle of a battle makes every choice make sense.
However, there’s more to fighting than just swapping things around in your RAM, such as the presence of a simple rock-paper-scissors system that can be leveraged to exploit an attacker’s weaknesses. enemy. For example, a purple ‘Wetware’ attack would be extremely effective against a green ‘Cyberware’ enemy. Most enemies are color-coded to make it easy to see where they will be weak, and taking advantage of this system has the passive effect of adding a lot to your Jack Move meter. This works much like a Limit Break, and once full, it allows you to launch a devastating attack against the entire opposing team which could very often end the skirmish right there. Even better, there is a summary DDR– beautiful minigames that you play before making each Jack Move; nailing all the prompts at the right time increases the amount of damage dealt and makes the attack much more devastating.
Another thing that can help you balance the balance ratio is the turn window in the corner, which indicates which enemy will attack when and when Noa will act next. With this information, you can sometimes eliminate enemies to give Noa another turn, or you can slow enemies or speed up Noa so you have more action on a longer timeline. We appreciate that the developer So Romantic gives you many tools to increase your chances of success, as it makes fights much more dynamic and helps them not to feel so old and the same.
When you’re not fighting enemies, you’ll guide Noa around complex cityscapes, data structures, and scrap yards, opening hidden briefcases containing useful items, and solving puzzles. Basic puzzle to manipulate the environment. Meanwhile, if you are in the dungeon area, there will be a threat meter in the top corner indicating when the next battle will take place. Once full, you won’t necessarily attack immediately, but it can happen at any time. And, if you don’t like being jumpy while trying to solve a puzzle, there’s a handy switch to slow down the fill rate or stop it altogether, though this latter option risks making Noa too low. to keep up with the increasing difficulty.
As for character development, Noa only levels up in the traditional sense, but each software action can also independently gain experience upon use and be leveled up to make it more effective in battle. war. In addition, there is quite a bit of software available that you can unlock by completing side quests or buying them from one of the shops in town; it feels like you always take 5 minutes to unlock another one to expand your arsenal. With this in mind, it’s impressive that Jack Move manages to feel like a much longer game than it really is. Enemy levels and stats increase fairly quickly, but Noa’s abilities increase at a commensurate rate; The difficulty doesn’t feel like it’s skyrocketing too much at any given time.
It’s worth reiterating that the story will probably only take about ten hours for you to go through until it’s complete. There are side quests you can do to prolong the run time a bit and get stuck in a tough boss fight here or maybe give you a skip, but even then, this could be a… One of the shortest RPGs you’ll ever play. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing – the ramp-up ensures that you’re leveling up and getting better gear at a much faster rate than most people – but those of you who want to do A deep and complex exploration of the JRPG can be left a little frustrated and wanting more. However, we appreciate the brevity of length as it ensures that there are no half-hearted game mechanics or unnecessary lengthy cutscenes.
For its presentation, Jack Move uses a hi-bit art style that feels somewhat reminiscent of the work seen in titles like Aegis Defenders and Katana Zero, is characterized by nicely detailed HD pixel art, smooth character animations, and a flashy vintage aesthetic overall. The world of Jack Move doesn’t have to be rough, but we love how it incorporates other elements of the cyberpunk genre — spider-man, street hacker, neon screens filled with ads over a rainy cityscape. — into a world that is surprisingly colorful and alive.
All of this is combined by a soundtrack that combines synthwave, lo-fi and industrial music creating an intense and nostalgic atmosphere. We’d love to have a few more tracks in the overall roster to make it a bit more varied, but what’s here is absolutely top-notch work.
It may not last terribly, but Jack Move manages to pack all the essentials needed for a stellar cyberpunk JRPG adventure. Innovative combat system, enchanting world, and engaging graphics all come together to create a perfectly paced, engaging and memorable release that no RPG fan wants. miss out and that goes double for the little time genre enthusiasts. It’s not often that you see a JRPG that focuses so much on sci-fi games, and Jack Move made the most of every minute of its run. Highly recommended.