Wednesday, October 10, 2018

The World Ends With You: Final Remix Review

Back in 2008, The World Ends With You quickly became one of my favorite Nintendo DS games. I purchased it again for iOS in 2012 and marveled at how well it played despite losing the DS’ dual screens. After playing the latest re-release on Switch, presumptuously subtitled Final Remix, I’m left feeling disappointed that this may be the way TWEWY goes out. The charming and inventive action JRPG is still here, but only when you play it in handheld mode with touchscreen controls. If you try to play in docked mode with motion controls, it frustrates.

TWEWY tells a touching tale about finding oneself in those painfully awkward teenage years. Its characters have complex personalities that, over the course of the 15-plus-hour adventure, grow in both surprising and welcome ways. You play as Neku, a disillusioned young man who finds himself part of a bizarre game in Tokyo’s Shibuya district. Although Shibuya’s streets are crowded, only other players and game masters can see Neku and his companions, and this key idea artfully touches on the stark difference between loneliness and being alone in a way that few games do.

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