Soul Hackers 2 is a 2022 release that's the fifth entry in the Devil Summoner subseries of Megami Tensei games. I have played roughly none of the preceding entries, but I like the aesthetic of this one and I need an excuse to get around to it, which this site gives me. I know the preceding entries are pretty different stylistically, but maybe I'll get around to them if I like this one. The expectations I've got going into this are that it reminds me a bit of Crimson Tears in terms of its budget and relative status compared to contemporary games. I'm expecting something decently stylish that's trying some kind of interesting things mechanically, with some pretty basic dungeon movement and layout.
The game opens by zooming in on a shot of someone asleep in a void
A voice starts talking about the Aeon and the Aion, and how individuality is a regression from their objective of being neutral observers, but that for the sake of preventing calamity, it is necessary for Aion to gain individuality and assume the form of a human for their mission.
It cuts over some shots of some scenes with some dead bodies.
And then there's this shot of some grasping hand with eyeballs growing out of it
And then it cuts to a much lighter technovoid, where Ringo and her twin are standing.
They're told that the deaths of the two people we were shown in the cutaways, one computer engineer named Ichiro Onda, and one Devil Summoner named Arrow, will set apocalyptic events into motion. The two of them are then given techno swords and guns and sent into the real world.
As they arrive, they find out that their targets are already dead.
Ringo initiates a Soul Hack, where she delves into the shattered remnants of Arrow's psyche and sees his memories leading up to this point.
It shows Arrow as a child with a friend, who tells him he should make the best of his life. It flicks over to show his acceptance as a Devil Summoner, and then shows the moment before he died, with his killer being the friend it showed before.
At the bottom of Arrow's memories, Ringo offers Arrow a second chance, which Arrow accepts.
Arrow wakes up and immediately accepts what just happened without too many questions. Arrow then explains that he was on an undercover double agent mission to protect someone named Milady, a Devil Summoner from a group called the Phantom Society and then the two team up and start heading to go and find her.
Heading to the end of the zone, we find Milady dead on the ground like Arrow. She's got some weird gold strand coming out of her, which is apparently called a Covenant.
Standing over her is Rhyme Soldier, who spits some bars before starting a boss fight. The fight's easy enough, hit him with Bufu, defend if it says he's charging up an attack.
After the fight, Ringo's twin Figue shows up and takes the Covenant. Ringo then initiates a Soul Hack with Milady, which shows she was betrayed by her org in a similar kind of way to Arrow.
After Milady returns to life, the group convinces Milady to join them. Arrow says he has a safe house, and that they should go there next.