3DS
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Game Info:

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked
Developed by: Atlus
Published by: Atlus
Release date: August 23, 2011
Available on: 3DS
Genre: Tactical RPG
Number of players: Single-player
ESRB Rating: Teen for violence, blood, language and partial nudity
Price: $23.99
(Amazon Affiliate Link)

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor was originally released in 2009 for the Nintendo DS system.  It was well received and inspired a Manga and a drama CD after it.  A sequel was also released a couple of years later.  Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked provides full voice acting and some 3D effects to utilize the 3DS’ capabilities. Depending on which of the endings you choose, there’s optional 8th day content.

Other than the new day, the original story remains the same.  Humankind is being judged for their misuse of power and their ability to summon demons with the help of devices that look like Nintendo DS' called COMPs.  While some demons can be tamed and used in battle, many more are roaming around Tokyo and attacking innocents.  Because of this problem, Tokyo is under a military lockdown and only has a week to solve the demon problem or face destruction from mankind or from God Himself.  

You may be wondering why we know that there’s less than a week to solve this crisis.  Besides forging contracts with demons, the COMPs let you see how many more days a person has left to live.  Most people in Tokyo only have a few days to live.  Thankfully, the numbers above their heads are not definite and can be extended depending on your party’s actions.  You’ll spend a good majority of the game with your death clock at zero days. 

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked
Highlights:

Strong Points: Fun tactical RPG game with multiple endings
Weak Points: Dated visuals; lots of grinding required
Moral Warnings: This game requires you to forge contracts with demons; some of the demons have revealing clothing or lack thereof; violence and blood; swearing and blaspheming

This game is broken down into days. You can choose where to travel and who to talk to in order to establish relationships and to guide the story.  While there are free battles (for grinding) that do not consume time, most relationship scenes and story battles take away a half an hour apiece.  Success in battles depends on who your party members are and how powerful the demons they have equipped.

The starter demons are pretty weak and you can acquire higher level demons by buying/bidding on them through the COMP.  Demons can also be combined/fused together to make stronger ones.  When fusing demons you can customize some of their attributes and abilities.  Each demon type has its own strengths and vulnerabilities to certain types of elements or physical attacks.   Demons can attack with and be weak to fire, ice, electricity, wind, and curses.  Both humans and demons share other attributes like strength, magic, vitality, and agility.  When the main character levels up you can increase one of those attributes.  Everyone else has their skills adjusted automatically. 

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 88%
Gameplay - 17/20
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 9/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 39%
Violence - 4.5/10
Language - 1/10
Sexual Content - 3/10
Occult/Supernatural - 3.5/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 7.5/10

There are a wide variety of demons and many religious influences have gone into their designs.  Some demons are angelic in appearance while others are distinctly evil, especially the boss battles.  Towards the end of the game you’ll have to battle Beelzebub.  Depending on your choices you can even battle God Himself.  (I didn’t take that route.)

Other issues worth mentioning include violence and pixilated blood.  The scenes that have blood are DS quality and not very detailed, but you can still tell that there’s blood involved.  Some of the deaths by demons go into some gritty details.  There is a lot of language and blaspheming in this game as well.  The F-bomb is not used, but every other word is in the game, including the Lord’s name being used in vain.  Last but not least is the lack of clothing on demons both male and female.  Nothing is seen in either case but plenty of skin is shown.

If you don’t mind the moral content, there is a lot of fun to be had in this game.  I’ve spent over forty hours completing just one of the endings. The refined visuals and full voice acting add to an already great title, though I’m not sure if it’s worth buying again for owners of the original game.  If you enjoy darker themed tactical RPGs, this one is worth checking out.

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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