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Hyperdimension Neptunia was a 12-episode fantasy/ comedy TV anime that aired from July 12 to September 27 of this year. The series is an adaptation of a video game RPG series developed by Idea Factory and Compile Heart, with the anime adaptation being created by David Production. Funimation currently has North American streaming rights to the series.

The Plot

Who knew Pedobear had a cousin?
Who knew Pedobear had a cousin?

In the virtual world known as Gamindustri, the four goddesses of each country agree to a “friendship treaty” that bans each country from using military force to gather Share Energy, an energy source that grants a goddess influence and power over any territory in Gameindustri where their populace strongly believe in them. While the goddesses learn to get along with one another, they have to face enemy threats attempting to exploit Share Energy for their personal gain over the world of Gameindustri.

Notable Characters (from left to right)

  • Neptune/ Purple Heart- The childish and energetic goddess of Planeptune with a habit of jumping headfirst into trouble. As Purple Heart, Neptune's personality is more serious and mature as she makes use of a sword in battle.
  • Noire/ Black Heart- The goddess of Lastation who prefers to deal with things on her own and has a strained relationship and rivalry with Neptune.
  • Vert/ Green Heart- The goddess of Leanbox who is smart, yet tends to overestimate her abilities. As Green Heart, she has a more stubborn and arrogant personality.
  • Blanc/ White Heart- The goddess of Lowee who is short-tempered and prone to being angered easily. She has a rivalry with Vert due to the Leanbox goddess's large bust size.
  • Nepgear/ Purple Sister- Neptune's younger sister who has a shy and reserved personality compared to Neptune.
  • Uni/ Black Sister- The younger sister of Noire with a strong admiration of her sister, which also leads her to have an inferiority complex. She is more perky and outgoing compared to Noire.
  • Ram and Rom/ White Sisters- The twin younger sisters of Blanc. Ram is talkative and bold with her personality while Rom is more shy and timid.
  • Arfoire- The first major enemy threat faced by the goddesses who desires to rule over all of Gamindustri.
  • Anonydeath- The second enemy threat faced by the goddesses, this hacker is known to talk in a feminine matter and has an obsession with Noire.
  • Rei Ryghts- The final enemy threat faced by the group, Rei appears to be an anti-goddess activist who is actually the goddess of the former nation of Tari with plans to destroy all of Gameindustri.

Why It Sucks

Neptunia is yet another case of an anime series shamelessly being used as promotional material for its video game source material. It also panders fairly heavily to the otaku crowd with its milking of the moe craze for its female cast and nods to the video game industry coming from characters, country names and elements to some of the worlds that the characters visit.

Naked bodies censored... or are they?
Naked bodies censored... or are they?

All the characters seen throughout this series milk differing character archetypes that they don't really grow out of and have little depth to show for it, many of said characters milking differing character types that have become popular from the moe craze. Much of the female cast serve to pander to its audience with their character quirks, idiosyncrasies, revealing or fetish-themed outfits (these especially prevalent with the transformed states of the goddesses) and usually getting into suggestive predicaments during comedic or serious moments.

The series also panders to video game fans as character names, countries and elements to the worlds that are visited by the characters are nods to past and present elements of the video game industry. For instance, Neptunia and Neptune are references to Sega's canned attempt to create a Genesis/ 32X combo video game system called the Neptune, and Nepgear being a nod to Sega's handheld game system from the 1990s called the Game Gear.

Someone has way too much time on their hands.
Someone has way too much time on their hands.

The series attempts to mix comedy and adventure in its focus on the goddesses focusing on the group either bonding in crazy predicaments involving whatever video game nods that are referenced or dealing with any random enemy threat either causing trouble for anyone among their group or attempting to whore up Share Energy for their personal gain. Both elements to the title's storytelling are hard to care for because of Neptunia's shallow characterization and a number of the villains in the series being hard to take seriously as threats because of their comical behavior or incompetent actions. Even in the instances where the group have to deal with a serious threat, Neptunia quite often milks plot devices that are either too convenient or milk the tiresome “power of friendship” cliche to thrash the enemy they confront.

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