So this is a new thing I’d like to start here on our site where we bring to you a game every so often that we like to call hidden gems. These hidden gems, otherwise commonly known as sleeper hits or games that aren’t overly well known but are otherwise top notch games. Our first hidden gem is The World Ends With You for the DS. It was originally released as It’s A Wonderful World in Japan on July 26, 2007 and didn’t reach overseas til late April 2008. The World Ends With You is a JRPG, but not in the traditional sense though. It takes place right in the heart of modern day Tokyo in the shopping district of Shibuya so you’ll recognize many of the buildings and landmarks there, albeit with some slight name changes to some of them.
The game is created by a corroboration between Square Enix and Jupiter so you would expect a quality RPG out of it, and it does indeed deliver a great experience! Storywise, there are quite a few plot twists that will keep you hooked. You start off in an alternate version of Shibuya where no one living can hear you and you’re fighting to earn the right to live again. The battle system uses pins that gives you Psychs a.k.a. abilities to help beat back the Noise (Monsters) and it utilizes the touchscreen heavily. The neat part is that you can control the bottom screen (you) and also your partner on the second simultaneous battle on the top screen through either the face buttons or D-Pad.
The artstyle is different from many other games out there and literally looks like a moving animé that you’re in control of. The style of graphics really helps the game be something unique and it’s something that I think many other games should take a leap of faith in and be different.
If just setting it on regular isn’t hard enough for you, you can crank up the difficulty by decreasing your level and increasing the difficulty in the menu to earn more experience points and more items. And to throw another wrench in there, certain pin types in certain areas on the map get either stat boosts or reductions, which makes the need to adapt strategies necessary to be successful in the game.
When you think the game’s done with you, there’s a feature where you can go back to each day and complete all of that day’s quest to unlock little backstory blurbs and there is a second story mode that you can delve deeper into the wonderful world of The World Ends With You.
If you haven’t played The World Ends With You, I’d highly recommend checking it out, especially if a friend has a copy to lend to you since it may be a bit difficult to find at local video games stores.