It’s no secret that I’m a major fan of the PlayStation Vita. I own both the old fat, launch version of the Vita and a shiny, new and orange version that I got as a gift from my wife on a vacation to Japan. I simply adore this handheld. But as you may be aware it has issues with getting new games for the format. So when a new game comes out, which is both great AND original I will throw my money in its direction. Lost Dimension is one of those games. I will keep the following very general and avoid spoilers.
What is Lost Dimension about?
Lost Dimension starts off with a series of attacks around the world by a mysterious man calling himself ‘The End’, the agent of the apocalypse. The list of casualties hit 2 billion before he drops an enormous tower in the middle of New York. He gives the world leaders 13 days to kill him, after which he will destroy the planet.
No one else really likes that idea so a squad of 11 specially trained elite soldiers with unique powers called S.E.A.L.E.D is sent in to attempt to reach The End (pun totally intended) and finish him off before the (literal) deadline.
So for S.E.A.L.E.D it’s just another day at the job, right? Nope, not at all. They all suffer from memory loss after getting inside the tower and after they encounter a hologram of The End they learn that there are traitors among them. On each floor they will have to review all the intel and gut feelings they have and vote for someone, hopefully, a traitor, to get executed. You control the character Sho, who is gifted with ‘vision’ that makes him able to see things that will happen in the future. This helps a bunch when you have to figure out who the traitor is.
The gameplay of Lost Dimension
Putting this game into a genre box is not that easy a task. There are a fair few RPG elements, you have skill trees and you have discussions with the other characters with multiple choices of dialogue. However, the combat is strategic and turn-based, not unlike the newer XCOM games. For each map (and there are several of these on each floor) you pick 5 companions to aid Sho in combat. Some of them can heal, some deal a lot of damage and other function not unlike a tank. Each character has a finite length they can move before they make their attack. When all 6 has made their move the enemies can do the same.
Every floor has 1 traitor, but 3 suspects. After each map Sho can hear the thoughts of the characters he brought along but not pinpoint which thought belongs to who. He might hear thoughts from the traitor from which he can deduct that all the people who were not on the mission are off the hook. At the end of each floor, every member of S.E.A.L.E.D has to vote on who the traitor is. So you both have to figure out who the traitor is AND convince the other members to vote for him or her. The loser of this vote will die…
Should you play Lost Dimension?
The short answer is “YES”. It is a great game with a compelling story that will surprise you in the end. You will have to play through the game 2-3 times to get the real ending, but the game makes it way faster to finish on the second and third playthrough. There is a chance it will become repetitive, especially the dialogues which are very generic most of the time, but the characters do have a unique personality and you will quickly find favorites.
Oh, and did I mention that the whole part of figuring out who the traitor is, is a copy of the awesome boardgame mastermind? It’s brilliant!