My first major hole I have fallen into this year! Outside of spending time with Tetris 99 (it is fantastic – give it a try!), my time this week has been spent with one game and only one game – Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth – Hacker’s Memory. From here on out, I will call this Hacker’s Memory for my own sanity. Cut me some slack, I write most of my articles on my phone and it’s a long title!

In 2016, one of my favorite games of that year was Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth. It fed into my love of collecting and my other love of battling creatures ala Pokemon. I assumed this was a sequel of sorts, but that isn’t the case. Instead this runs concurrently with that story, oftentimes hinting at the going-ons in that plot and occasionally seeing characters from that story including the playable character.

Since it is so closely related, I am finding myself in similar surroundings which is both good and bad. On one hand, it’s nice to be familiar with a general layout to avoid being confused as to where to go, but it’s also a bit of a bummer because it feels like I’m kind of playing the same game again.

Even some of the story beats and the progression during the plot mirrors each other in a weird way. I haven’t went searching to know for sure, but certain characters and locations do seem to pop up around the same time frame in Hacker’s Memory as they did in the previous game.

Aside from that, I’m finding myself as addicted to this game as the last one. This is a role playing nerds’ dream when it comes to stat management and leveling up. It’s detrimental since “digivolving” relies on certain stats to be reached before a form is possible, but even if its not, most of the time multiple forms are optional so something would come from it regardless. Thankfully, with some work, it is possible to get the stats required through de-digivolving or items if you are searching for the right Digimon.

The problem you’ll run into early on though comes with party memory. Each Digimon has a specific memory number that adds to the total of your party memory. As they digivolve, that number grows and limits the party makeup since you can’t surpass the overrall party limit. This is rectified by finding “memory up” items that increase the total, but they are spread throughout the story. This can be irritating since a lot of the fun comes with digivolving, but it does keep the challenge in check as well.

The combat is a standard turn-based system that allows for the typical switching out members, guarding, use items, attacking, fleeing, and special attacks. There is a more basic form of the Pokemon elemental strengths and weaknesses in the form of type attributes such as Virus, Data, and Vaccine. Depending on the combat, this could lead to double damage or half damage. This is then pushed forward with elements that could increase damage even more. Combo attacks and status effects are also possible in this system, so while it looks pretty simple on the outside, there are plenty of things to consider during a battle.

For those in love with Digimon, there is no shortage in this game. Even with the prior game sporting quite a healthy number, I found myself running across quite a few in Hacker’s Memory I hadn’t seen in the other one. Altogether, there is almost 350 Digimon available with almost 100 of them not appearing in the first Cyber Sleuth title. Suffice it to say, there is plenty of time to devote to obtaining them all.

I am roughly 11 hours in and only about a quarter of the way through the game. So knowing I still want to get through more games in my backlog is a little worrisome because I don’t want to stop. At least I know I don’t have to worry about the deluge of titles that just released such as Crackdown 3 and Metro Exodus. I can easily pass those up.

Between enjoying whatever you are playing, check out everything we are doing here whether it our podcast, our YouTube channel, or even our PlayStation All-Stars Ultimate Roster Showdown!

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