Hexyz Force Review

The portable space is one where the RPG genre likes to experiment the most. Some of the most radically different RPGs, such as Infinite Space or Half Minute Hero, call either the PSP or DS their home. Atlus’s latest import, Hexyz Force from developer Sting, doesn’t stray far from the beaten path of the RPG genre, but still hides some welcome additions to RPGs.

Hexyz Force moves at a quick and furious pace, keeping you and your band of heroes constantly in the fight. This is one game that knows it’s portable and doesn’t want to waste what precious time you have left in your commute or waiting room. Everything from the story to the battle system is constructed in a way that gets straight to the point. There are no shops or currency. Instead, the game swaps in Force Points, or FP, as your main life force throughout the game. FP is used to upgrade weapons and construct new equipment. You never have to worry about managing your economy. All your necessary equipment is available as long as you have the sufficient FP and materials, which you get from fighting battles. This keeps things fast-paced and focused. Need a new weapon or item? Just create it on the fly. There’s no need to trek back to town or worry if you have enough gold.


The battle system is equally as quick. Again, Hexyz Force drops a lot of the common RPG trappings in favor of a streamlined experience. Mana or Magic Points are gone and instead your attacks and abilities are all governed by Ragna Points, or RP. Standard attacks use a very small amount, with larger, more powerful blows costing much more. Don’t worry about having to manage RP, though. Only special weapons called Ragnafacts use them. You can also equip up to four weapons, with standard weapons using Durability Points to govern their use. This allows your party to be customized to your liking and have weapons for any situation you’ll encounter.

While this all may sound complicated, it is incredibly simple in practice and Hexyz Force never talks down to the player or exhibits excessive hand holding. The game clearly communicates all of its systems and keeps things easy in the beginning as you experiment. In fact, the difficulty was finely tuned throughout my experience and never felt too challenging or too easy. I progressed at a nice pace through my adventure with little frustration and was allowed to enjoy the story and learn the battle system better.

But the quick pace of neither the battles nor the focused progression can cure the by-the-book story and characters that Hexyz Force has on display. The story is the usual JRPG cliché of a giant empire suddenly becoming hostile and slowing taking over other territories. The characters also firmly stand in their given and predetermined archetypes. If you’ve played any JRPG in the last 15 years, you know what is going to happen here.


The graphics are impressive for the PSP and battle effects look great, but the game’s look and feel, again, succumbs to modern JRPG trappings. Comparing this game’s art direction with any other JRPG will reveal similarities, and Hexyz Force seems content to promote its battle system instead of trying to bring anything new to the traditional RPG presentation.

Hexyz Force is a completely serviceable JRPG for the PSP system. It keeps things moving along at a brisk pace that is welcome on a portable system, but is content trotting out JRPG clichés and is mostly uninspired. There is nothing remarkable about the game, but if you love JRPGs and need something to kill time while playing your PSP, you could do a lot worse than Hexyz Force.

3 out of 5


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Author: Matt Erazo View all posts by

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