Another youngster with spiky hair needs to save the world from total destruction. What’s that? Sell you harder? He has amnesia too! Here is my review for The Longest 5 Minutes.
Yes, The Longest 5 Minutes is full of typical JRPG clichés. However, it delivers them in the way you may not have seen before. In any other RPG, you start off at a very low level and work your way up to a final bad guy having grown stronger along the way. The Longest 5 Minutes starts off with our main character, Flash, in combat with the final boss suffering from amnesia with no recollection as to how he got there. With a group of friends you don’t remember and the Demon King in front of you, the story unfolds through flashbacks happening in the middle of the final fight.
The story is pretty typical in that you see Flash do the JRPG song and dance. He leaves home with a simple quest, takes some friends along with him, makes new friends along the way, performs some menial tasks for townsfolk, discovers a big world problem, gets tasked with solving the world’s problem. The interesting thing about it is how the flashbacks used to deliver the story basically break up the game into linear bite-size chapters making this game easily consumable on the go.
Battles are your typical random encounter, menu based style and should be familiar to any RPG fan. My only gripe with combat was that no battle presented any real difficulty. At no point in time did I ever feel threatened by an enemy I was facing in a flashback. Part of me wondered if this was because any failure in a flashback would result in a paradox considering the game started at the end of the story with me still alive. If this was the case, I hate that challenge was sacrificed for an interesting story mechanic.
The visuals in this game are very reminiscent of 8 and 16 bit games, it’s a style that never gets old no matter how old it gets. One thing that stood out to me most were the awesome enemy designs. At one point I was fighting a barrel of wine dressed as a butler drinking a glass of what I can only assume was his own wine. Seriously, some of these enemies were on the same level of crazy as Citizens Of Earth and that game was full of bald eagles waring toupees.
The music in The Longest 5 Minutes is good but very repetitious. Toward the end of my play through, I was tired of hearing the same battle music with every random encounter and began to play the game with my system on mute.
Overall, The Longest 5 Minutes is a good game with a story we’ve all heard before being told in a new and interesting way. Though the game is quite linear compared to other RPGs out there, the chapter system gives it easy breaking points making it feel at home on a portable console. While I don’t see myself going back to it anytime soon, there are multiple endings and a handful of side quests that would give replayability to anyone willing to invest the time.
The Longest 5 Minutes is out now on Nintendo Switch, PS Vita and Steam
Review Copy Provided by NIS America
Played through the entire story, achieving one of many endings.
Total Play Time, About 7hrs