Loop8: Summer of Gods is a JRPG that tries to break the mould. This weird combination of déjà vu action, visual novel text, and relationship-building didn’t excite me in the slightest. Sadly, the often confusing gameplay and sluggish dialogue juxtaposed the amazing environment and wonderful soundscape. As such, playing this was a slog and no matter how far I progressed, my feelings rarely changed.
Developed by Marvellous and published by XSEED Games, this is a JRPG adventure. Moreover, it has a plethora of unusual mechanics that muddy the water while making your head spin. However, its interesting concept should be applauded. Yet, its execution leaves much to be desired, as you relive every day repeatedly.
Loop8: Summer of Gods is a tale of doom and gloom.
You play the role of Nini, a young lad who grew up in space. However, he has returned to Ashihara island to live a “normal” life. The Kegai are a cruel and destructive force that hunts humans for fun. Yet, they avoid Ashihara for reasons I’m unwilling to explain. Unfortunately, though, this peaceful island becomes tainted as the Kegai finds a way past the barrier! Therefore, a hero is required to find the possessed individual, gather some friends, and save the world before it is too late.
The plot gives a brief indication of the confusing nature of this title. Once the foundations are set, you spend much of your time scratching your head. Accordingly, you’ll aimlessly read the never-ending text and wonder what the hell is going on. Matters are made worse when the key mechanics are explained to you. As such, it took me an awfully long time to get to grips with every element on offer.
Relationships and stats.
Loop8: Summer of Gods focuses on some basic mechanics. Effectively, you must improve your stats by completing tasks and finding blessings. Alongside this, you’ll explore the market to find food to increase your stamina and action points. By doing this, you can increase the number of jobs you can undertake and improve your attributes further still. The tasks are remarkably simple and inane. You can work out on the iron bars for strength or use the arcade to improve your skill. Alternatively, you can search your surroundings to find blessings from a flying squirrel called Musasa. These are essential if you wish to get buffs and progress later in the game.
Relationships are another major part of the game. Every interaction alters the mood between characters. Additionally, your relationship with one person can have a positive or negative impact on another. Therefore, you must balance your time and tasks wisely. As you explore the stunning island, you’ll need to discover who has been possessed by the Kegai. Furthermore, you’ll need a band of 3 friends that have a positive relationship with the possessed individual. Subsequently, there are plenty of plates to spin in this absurdly elaborate JRPG.
So much dialogue.
I’m a fan of visual novel titles. But Loop8: Summer of Gods took it too far. Whenever you die, or the timer runs out, a new loop begins. From here, you must repeat the actions you’ve taken and endure the same conversations. To make things worse, each conversation rarely links to another. As such, every interaction feels isolated, even though they are connected by the relationship system. This lack of continuity was frustrating as the plot fails to flow as well as it should. Moreover, it enhances the layers of confusion and made my interest wane a bit more.
The timer and death ideas should have been interesting. Yet, in reality, they were tiresome. The seamlessly never-ending tirade of rehashed dialogue will drive you nuts. Thankfully, though, there is a helpful skip system. However, this only embellishes the random nature of the game and leads to unwanted mistakes. As with any visual novel, your choices matter. Therefore, if you make an error, and you will, you will damage your relationships and this can have dire consequences.
Is it a dungeon?
The constant ticking of the clock is a daunting prospect. But if you somehow work out who is possessed, you’ll unlock the door to the dungeon. Sounds exciting, right? Well, it isn’t, sadly. The dungeon is a mirror image of the town but delivered in a muted fashion. Moreover, the ghostly figures become your foes and they trigger a bizarre fight.
The simple battle system is tedious and filled with problems. Teamwork goes out of the window as your options are limited and healing your party is more luck than judgement. As such, trying to work your way through the “dungeon” is dependent on the relationships you have formed and the mood of the surrounding group.
Loop8: Summer of Gods looks amazing.
If Loop8: Summer of Gods wasn’t so pleasant to look at, I’d have switched off long before I did. If you love Anime or Manga, you’ll adore the stunning finish and the exceptional character models. What’s more, the settings are fantastic and even the muted dungeon was unusual and interesting. Alongside this, the UI was suitable, and the cutscenes were great. However, the loading times were appalling, and the action was interrupted repeatedly by lengthy pauses. Consequently, this was unacceptable for a modern title.
The audio epitomises the JRPG genre. The airy tracks, exceptional acting, and amazing sound effects add magic and wonderment to every moment. Furthermore, the blend of spoken and written dialogue was nicely balanced. Accordingly, the acting never got old and the poignant elements were well delivered.
Why is the hero so slow?
Oodles of written dialogue can be justified, but a hero that is stupidly slow is unacceptable. Subsequently, this meandering protagonist will piss you off! It’s bad enough that you have to sit through hours of loading screens and masses of dialogue, but to have to walk as fast as a snail as well, that’s just torturous. Other than this, the control system was suitable, and each command was thoroughly explained.
If I wasn’t reviewing this game, I would have binned it off hours before I did. The tedious nature of every element will turn you off immediately. Moreover, the slow pace and mountains of text create an undesirable atmosphere that instantly puts your back up. Subsequently, if you can power through this, I applaud your resolve.
Loop8: Summer of Gods was a big disappointment.
I love JRPGs and I couldn’t wait to explore Loop8: Summer of Gods. However, its interesting ideas are so poorly executed that I was horribly disappointed. Furthermore, it is so confusing that it is tough to comprehend every element. Accordingly, I didn’t like it and I won’t be recommending it. Yet, more information can be found here! The barrier has been passed, and a hero is needed. Can you step up to the mark and save everyone before time runs out?