In the 2016, a game entitled, The Caligula Effect, was released on Playstation Vita. Despite it having ‘not the best’ reviews, Aquria as the developer does not lose any hope and decided to release the game again as a remaster, The Caligula Effect: Overdose, for Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch, and PC. But, has The Caligula Effect: Overdose really drove away the flaws from the previous game?
- System : Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch, PC
- Release Date : May 17, 2018 (Japan), March 12, 2019 (NA)
- Developer/Publisher : Aquria/FuRyu
- Main Series : The Caligula Effect
The Caligula Effect: Overdose happens in a virtual world that is made to let people gone away from their real life problems and sorrows. This world is created by μ (Mu), a vocaloid program that blurs the reality and fantasy world. Even in this world life looks so perfect, living in a made up world feel amiss. Yet, you as the player have to reveal the mystery behind it and try to escape from this false, paradise.
For those who may have watched the anime, you will not be surprised with the plot as it is exactly the same. With high school life as the story setting, this game has quite much similarity with the Persona Series. The story, in my opinion, is quite uplifting. Trying to escape from the ‘digital world’s paradise’ truly depicting the nowadays’ society. On top of that, you might like The Caligula Effect: Overdose plot when you feel okay with the Hatsune Miku-like idol thingy by the high school teenagers.
The characters in The Caligula Effect: Overdose are from the Go-Home Club, which consists of 11 high school students who realize that they are living in an virtual world. At the start of the game, you have the opportunity to play as a male or female character, which I believe affect the dialogue between some characters, but not too much.
Each character also has their own story arc that you can explore as you progress through the game. Despite them being depicted as teenagers, their story may reveal that they could be anyone in any age and gender. So, you might get surprised with the characters true selves that may attract your curiosity towards the game story.
In terms of gameplay, I would like to explore it in two different aspects, battle system and dungeon exploring. These things have contrasting review from what I have experienced with the game.
First, about the battle system in The Caligula Effect: Overdose. I personally like the way how The Caligula Effect: Overdose has the imaginary chain feature. It allows you to know how your strategy in battle will go out. By having this feature, you can always make your move in battle to be as effective as you can, especially with the skills usage and the timing. The imaginary chain also covers up the thing that I don’t really prefer about the battle system, which every character is required to use SP in order to attack the enemies
Now, we talk about the dungeon exploring gameplay. Honestly, I feel so bored when I have to explore the dungeons in The Caligula Effect: Overdose. Not only it feels repetitive, the setting does not comfort my sight. Maybe it has something to do with the game’s setting of being trapped in a virtual world, but really it could be way better than that. For sure, I don’t really favor the way they make the dungeon, both the mapping and the environment details.
As a remaster game in modern consoles, The Caligula Effect: Overdose has the typical Unreal Engine graphics. There is nothing special about it, but, I can tell you that the 2D, anime-style art is quite mesmerizing. Putting aside the repetitive details they depicted in the dungeons, the graphics in The Caligula Effect: Overdose surely take a lot step up compared to its predecessor.
The Soundtrack also seems quite soothing in the ears. I also think that they are worth to listen to outside the game. Both vocal and instrumental music are enjoyable to listen to. Surely most of you will love the soundtracks in The Caligula Effect: Overdose.
Last but not least, I would like to tell about how the social system works in the game. Beside The Caligula Effect: Overdose promises to allow you to befriend more than 500 regular students, the dialogue feels dry and repetitive in my opinion. Not only that, the reward you get from doing this is not so great. I know that making distinctive dialogues for hundreds of characters is beyond impossible, but I just think that this feature is lacking of its true potential.
As the closing point of this review, The Caligula Effect: Overdose surely not one of the best remastered games out there. Despite the not so good review in the original version, The Caligula Effect: Overdose does not quite fill up what it lacked beside the graphics and the imaginary chains battle system feature. For me, The Caligula Effect: Overdose is a so-so game. Some of you might like it, but more are likely to let it unfinished.