Metroid vs Hyper Dimension Neptunia Special Edition
In one corner we have Metroid Dread Special Edition and in the other we have Neptunia x Senran Limited Edition!
Both Special Collector’s Editions.
Both anticipated titles in their series.
And Both are sold out everywhere.
Who will come out on top?
Will Nintendo, the Multi-Billion dollar company come out on top with their most anticipated Triple A Title making it’s return after a long absence?
Or will it be Idea Factor, the smaller Multi-Million dollar publisher with their ingenious idea to cross over two notable IPs?
Find out…right here...right now!
First Let’s start off with what each bundle includes.
For the retail price of $90 Metroid Dread Special Edition includes 5 items:
That’s pretty solid and a usual staple that Nintendo provides with their previous Limited Edition titles.
It’s a great mix and variety of items.
Now how does Neptunia and Senran counter?
For $10 more at the retail price of $99, Neptunia x Senran Limited edition includes:
Game Case with a reversible cover
2 trading cards
AND a collector’s box!
To put it into perspective you get three additional things for an additional $10, or $3.33 per new item.
Does that mean Neptunia x Senran is Better?
Remember that having more items doesn't always mean the items are quality.
So let’s compare the items one by one and see just how the hold up against each other.
We will have 5 categories:
Physical Game Presentation
and finally, Extras.
Up first Physical Game Presentation, starting with Neptunia and Senran.
The upside is that they provide the game separate from the Limited Edition Packaging
I love how they included the original game in the original PS4 game case.
They really give you the option for you to choose how you want to display it and you’re not forced to use the Steel Book if you don’t want to.
And in classic idea factory style, they provide a reversible cover.
In the older titles they provided alternate art, but since Reverse, the alternate art is just a censored version of the front.
This kind of blows since I miss seeing the extra steps they took to make the alternate art unique and added a little pizzazz to your shelf should you choose that option.
Now The downside.
They provided the game separate from the Limited Edition Packaging.
As in, it doesn’t fit in the special edition box because there is no room for it.
Which I guess is fine because you can display it or shelve it with your other standard games.
But I’m disappointed that I don’t have the option or space to keep it in the box with the other contents.
Again, I’m going to be saying that a lot - I like having the options.
Imagine trying to keep the set all in one place - oh that's right, it doesn’t fit.
It just leaves you in this awkward position where it doesn’t feel like a complete package if I can’t bundle it all together and it makes it seem like two separate products.
What about Metroid, how did they solve this issue?
Nintendo just simply decided to not even include the original box and give you the game in the steel case.
The only thing I dislike more than not making room for the original game in the box is not even giving you the original game box at all.
I wasn’t a fan when they did this with Fire Emblem 3 Houses, and I’m not a fan of it now.
Which is a shame because the original box is actually quite nice and I would love to be able to shelve it with my standard cases.
I guess you can always keep it in the Steel Book.
But among the regular cases, it feels out of place.
You just have to be extremely careful not to dent the steel book since they are already hard to come by and replacements are pretty much non-existent, whereas as a regular case, I can destroy this and get a replacement easily.
Again, I want the options and Nintendo simply didn’t give it to me.
For this round we have to give the victory to Neptunia x Senran.
Round two we have the Steel Cases.
Neptunia x Senran has this beautiful steel book.
Both franchise characters are beautifully depicted on both sides.
I appreciate the custom art and I love how it’s not just the quick logo or some obscure generic looking background.
That’s not always a bad thing as I’ve seen series like Halo, Fire Emblem, and Mass Effect 3 make great use for this.
But I don’t think Neptunia x Senran would be as effective if they did that.
This art is beautifully made and still allows the steel book shine to come through around.
On the inside you have the main protagonists as a reference to the PS4 cover, which is a nice touch.
One thing you gotta love - the end label.
My personal pet peeve is when the steel books don’t have this.
It makes them hard to keep on the shelf and you can’t just pick them out from a glance.
It just looks odd next to other steel books.
Now how does Metroid hold up?
I love this beautiful rendition of the cover.
I love the choice of full art with no game title.
It allows the gloss and shine to really make Samus come to life.
The choice of art was flawless as both sides do a wonderful job of representing the tone of the game.
And....that end label….is nonexistent.
Is it really that hard to include?
They did it with Fire Emblem so why not with Metroid?
Again, if you look at it from your shelf with your other games, it looks off and weird.
This really limits your display options.
The only practical way to display it is to have it out with the cover exposed.
But again, if you don’t have room for that, then you either keep it on your shelf and stare at a blank and soulless spine, or keep it in the box and struggle to get it out everytime you want to play it.
The inside is nice though - it does have that Metroid Mystique to it and makes you feel like you’re holding a futuristic artifact.
However, while it is a beautiful steel book, Neptunia X Senran really outdid Metroid in this one.
Being tasked with presenting two franchises, they really did their best to make sure that the presentation doesn’t look crowded and despite all the characters, it definitely feels balanced.
The winner for this round is Neptune x Senran.
Round 3 Art Books
Idea Factory always comes through with the art books and even now, they still don’t disappoint.
A 48 page hardcover book for this one!
You get amazing details of the characters, art pieces, backgrounds, outfit designs and prototypes.
It's a nice size as well - about 6 x 8 inches, though I wish it was a little bigger.
Again, the amount of detail into this art can sometimes be missed especially with the smaller size.
However it has enough detail and attention put into it and these 48 pages definitely are packed with content.
It doesn’t feel like a rushed oversized manual and definitely has that Idea Factory charm.
Overall, It’s pretty solid.
As for Metroid Dread…
The Medroid art book is huge!
A Hard Cover 191 page behemoth!
It outclasses every Nintendo art book that has come before it!
The cover is simple, but sometimes, less is more.
Opening it up you get a quick history of the entire franchise with art respective to each game.
This is bigger than most high school yearbooks!
Consider this a Metroid Year Book!
Starting at page 54 you get art from Metroid Dread.
So not only do you get a brief history lesson in the first 53 pages, but you also get 137 pages of full Game Art.
This is a really phenomenal love letter to fans.
By comparison, Neptunia x Senran doesn’t even stand a chance.
Metroid Dread’s Art book is out here playing 4D chess while Neptunia x Senran is playing Candy Land, outclassed in page number, size, and the sheer amount of detail included.
Size doesn’t always matter, but this is the rare case where it does.
The winner, Metroid Dread.
Presentation wise, the Neptunia X Senran box is off to a fine start.
The art is on point and beautifully decorated around.
The box is nice, small, and compact.
I like this and it is definitely a plus for storage purposes.
However, why make the box this small and leave no room for the game and wall scroll?
Yeah I get it if they’re trying to match the editions before this, but even then, it’s not the same size!
A little disappointed since it makes some essential parts of the collection feel like separate items and after thoughts.
What about Metroid Dread?
The box itself is a work of art worthy of being framed!
It’s huge because it also has to hold that amazing art book, but again, not a complaint since they did a splendid job with the gloss of the full art and the embossed texture of the front.
And since the front and back sides are both elegant, it doesn’t matter what side you display since both will look beautiful no matter what.
And it fits right in with the rest of your Nintendo Special Edition boxes.
See? Same size.
The Winner, Metroid Dread.
Round 5 Extras
Neptunia and Senran come loaded with a soundtrack, 2 trading cards, Wall scroll, and you know what, let’s throw in the game case as well.
So in total, you have 4 extra items included...but are they quality?
I’ve already stated how I feel about the game cases, these are a must.
Trading cards are either hit or miss.
If you're collecting these to have a complete set for the series, then by all means these are amazing.
However if you’re not, they really don’t do much for you and might end up being used as bookmarks.
The wall scroll is kind of cool.
It is a unique feature that helps compliment the tone of the game, and it definitely has lasting value compared to a paper poster.
However the soundtrack is where it’s at.
You get 25 beautiful songs on this CD!
As usual, the cover art is amazing.
And in the era of digital media, it’s nice to have a physical copy.
Now to insert it into my laptop and...oh wait, modern laptops don’t even have disk drives.
With CD technology now becoming a thing of the past, CD’s are nice and I love them, but unless you have a CD player, you’ll just end up just listening to these songs on Youtube or a streaming service instead, making it more of a heavy paper weight or decorative piece instead.
Some hits against the extras on this side, so how about Metroid Dread?
Metroid Dread includes the art cards...and that’s it.
The art cards are nice and beautiful though!
You get details of specific Metroid games decorated with Samus’ visor from that respective title.
But after seeing all of this in the art book, it really feels hard to be impressed by these.
They feel like something that was simply included to make the packaging feel complete, but instead feels like a cop out.
The lack of substance in the back further cements that feeling as well.
Why not include the artwork from the perfect run from each game?
Better yet, why not include pins or an in game small replica item?
They had options, but they just said “art cards.”
While “usefulness” is in the eye of the beholder, you get more practical use from the Neptunia x Senran bundle.
And even if we were to remove the Game Case from the equation, Neptunia and Senran still hold up better than a couple of art cards.
It’s a nice variety and mix that I wish was replicated more for other titles.
The winner is Neptunia x Senran.
While Neptuna x Senran did win, you can’t discount that Metroid Dread’s presentation is top notch.
And arguably if we weren’t doing categories, Metroid dread’s book carries the entire special edition hard and I would say that it would push the game to a narrow in.
While I’d love to compare the gameplay, the fact is that they are two completely different franchises offering different gameplay styles for their respective fans.
Metroid is a solid franchise and Nintendo really went all out with this.
This feels like a Metroid game and for those waiting 19 years for a sequel to Fusion, this will meet your expectations..
On the other side, Idea factory is always experimental with their series, and especially with Neptunia.
Some Neptunia games hit it out of the park while others fall short.
This one I would say takes getting used to, especially because it’s a celebration of two franchises coming together so it will juggle with having to balance all of the characters.
Some fans will love it and others will hate it and will proceed to immediately regret wasting their money.
And some people may be saying “Suarez Digital, these two games are completely different and have nothing in common. Why would you even compare them?”
I agree, you are right.
They are completely different games with different fan bases, but that’s the reason why I compare them.
Normally fans have their game preferences and these two genres are so far apart that there is rarely any overlap.
By comparing them both, fans from both gaming genres are able to see what other bundles include.
In doing so, you can start determining if you feel whether or not the items your limited edition bundles include are justified or not.
Again, it’s merely for fun to see if the grass is truly greener on the other side.
In the end, I’m glad I bought both.
I do think both prices are justified and definitely worth the money.
So now that this battle is over we can move on.
Unless another challenger approaches and even then, they’d have to be an exceptionally amazing package to beat out these two.
So with that said, I declare the winner to be...
-door knocks and opens-
Super Monkey Ball Banana Mania Shows up
With it’s game, art book, downloadable content, and price point of $40 -whisper $20 for the holiday seasons- for the entire package, Super Monkey Ball Banana Mania is the real winner here!