Its all in your mind, MIND 0 Steam Review

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Mind Zero tells the story of a group of high schoolers that due to a twist of fate become involved in something that not even in their wildest dreams could be possible. Kei Takanashi and co, become MIND users; MINDS are a weapon/being with deadly powers. I have to say that I have played every Persona game, and Mind Zero contains some similarities with the Persona series, but it is unique and I like the fact that it tries to do something different. If you came here expecting to play Persona step away, but if you came with an open Mind you will enjoy it a lot.

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Each of the different dungeons is one of the strongest points on Mind Zero, they are really fun and offer a great deal of challenge, there are some really hard puzzles, the enemies are varied and there are Event Icons scattered on each one that tell more of the story (think of them like skits). Others lead to boss battles, so this is a good chance of pace from other, more traditional dungeon crawlers. After you finish the first one, you can “travel” around the city before moving on with the story, you can check Cmart and you can buy healing items and such, while Rosemary is where you can buy armor and accessories. The Red Character icons are the ones that move forward on the story. The battle system is where Mind Zero truly shines, as it is unlike anything I have played before. In your standard JRPGs you have HP & MP for health and magic, while in Mind Zero you have LP that are life points, get to 0 and it is game over, while MP are your Mind Points and these are needed to summon your Mind. Here is where it all changes, because if you summon your mind you don’t take damage from enemy attacks, your Mind absorbs them, but having it summoned you lose some MP in each turn. This in turn gives you a lot of room for strategy with regards to planning your next move.  You also have TP or Technique Points,  which you gain while attacking enemies. TP are needed for skills that you can use, some of which deal physical damage while others restore your health. However, in order to gain more skills you need to level up, since at first you can use only one skill per character, but the amount will rise as you progress through the story and level up your characters.

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For those of you who like to do side quests, there are a lot of them to do and they offer some great rewards, some of which are needed in order to progress further. As you unlock more places to visit, there are more side quests available, some range from slaying a certain number of minds to finding items, so there is a lot of variation to keep you entertained. Graphically the game runs really good without glitches (even on my not so good PC), and I really like the fact that when you launch the game, it is launched in a window mode mimicking the PS VITA resolution, although you can chance it to full screen if you like. I like this approach since I multitask a lot, so while I am playing the game I can check my email, twitter etc, (this is why I favor handhelds, but it is great to see that this was included). In the music department, each of the background music goes really well with each dungeon and sets the right atmosphere, and I find the sound that plays each time you summon your mind really funny, kind of like a swish sound that is common on Japanese cartoons.

Bottom Line Mind Zero is a solid port, it runs really well and it offers a different take on the dungeon crawling JRPG formula. I really enjoyed it, since it is a nice chance of pace, the battle system is really good, has a good story and I am eagerly waiting for a sequel. If you want to experience something new try it you will like it, but before you do, erase your preconceptions that this game is a persona ripoff, because it isn’t.

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