Scarlet Nexus Review Roundup — What Critics Are Saying About The Anime Thriller

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The sci-fi anime action RPG Scarlet Nexus launches on June 25, and the reviews are in. While not everyone is familiar with the upcoming game, it has received generally positive reviews from critics, who have praised its relatable characters, its surprisingly compelling plot, and especially its deep combat system as pluses. The PS5 version of Scarlet Nexus currently sits at an 80 on GameSpot’s sister site Metacritic, and if you want more info on the reviews, read on below.

GameSpot’s review of Scarlet Nexus is still in the works, but reviews praise it as an unexpectedly good time, with Polygon going so far as to call it a “surprise gem.” Several of the below excerpts describe the game as a combination of the frenetic action of the Tales series with the social interaction systems of a Persona game. However, some critics have faulted its social systems for insufficient depth when compared to the confidant system of Persona 5 Royal. Still, many of the reviewers said they hope to see a sequel that iterates on the game’s core ideas. Additionally, multiple reviewers suggest that Scarlet Nexus is quite lengthy, clocking in at 60 hours or so.

Now Playing: 10 Minutes Of Scarlet Nexus Gameplay With A Boss Fight

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“Scarlet Nexus has a colorful cast of characters and an impressive variety of gameplay mechanics, but for me, the unexpected cherry on top was its story,” wrote Polygon’s critic George Yang. “The chapters are very well-paced, and none of them overstays its welcome. 2021 is seeing quite a lot of JRPGs, with many of them being continuations of existing franchises or just remasters. But after having played through both of Scarlet Nexus’ storylines, I believe it has the potential to be a surprise hit this year for fans of the genre. Don’t let this brand-new futuristic brainpunk adventure slip past you.”

  • Game: Scarlet Nexus
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S
  • Developer: Bandai Namco Games
  • Release Date: June 25
  • Price: $60

GamesRadar+ — 3.5/5

“Scarlet Nexus has some great fun to offer through its experimental and varied combat system, and there’s a deluge of skills, attacks, and counters to mish-mash against one another for increasingly satisfying results. What ultimately lets Bandai Namco’s action game down is outside of the action itself, where side characters never amount to memorable, enjoyable companions, and a side quest structure that feels more primed to provide the player with character-boosting XP than tales that capitalize on the intriguing glowing city surrounding them. Scarlet Nexus casts its eye over plenty of intriguing subjects in its plot, but it never lingers on one area long enough to properly analyze and break down the tough subject matter.” — Hirun Cryer [Full review]

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VG247 — 3/5

“If you like the sound of a deep RPG with extensive combat mechanics, Scarlet Nexus shouldn’t disappoint. If you are expecting something more akin to Devil May Cry, you might find the extensive storytelling gets in the way of the gameplay a little too much. With that said, you can still enjoy it if you’re not an anime connoisseur. There’s plenty of fun to be had for all players because it’s great once it gets going – but I fear it might lose people in its opening few hours.” — Dorrani Williams [Full review]

Polygon — Recommended

“It’s too bad these side quests don’t take more advantage of Scarlet Nexus’ rich lore and politics, which you learn more about through the bonding events. For example, retired OSF members have trouble adjusting to civilian life after leaving the organization. There’s also a segment of the population that was born without psionic powers, and thus is looked down upon. There are themes of classism, ableism, and discrimination in the game that could have been explored even further for more world-building.” — George Yang [Full review]

Digital Trends — 9/10

“Scarlet Nexus is a must-play for any fan of Japanese action RPGs and standard JRPGs. If the story doesn’t grab your attention, the combat will. It has enough meat to its action to distract from its very minor blemishes. Its characters are a delight to interact with and seeing them grow together really had me fully invested in all of their arcs. I left the experience craving another title like it that takes its excellent action even further.” — DeAngelo Epps [Full review]

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RPG Site — 7/10

“Although, I do have a big issue with one thing in particular. An issue so massive it ruined my experience. News articles before release repeatedly reported that a certain character’s name was Cullen Travers. As a Cullen myself, I found myself over the moon with excitement. You don’t really ever see Cullens in video games, especially ones in Japan. I even took on this assignment just to get to say I reviewed a game with a Cullen in it. His name was unfortunately localized as Karen Travers. Maybe this could have been a mistranslation for western news sites, but I still think Cullen would have been an overall better name. My mother gave me this name for a reason, Bandai Namco. Are you trying to tell me my mother raised a Karen? Anyway, good job overall. I’ll probably check out the anime.” — Cullen Black [Full review]

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