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Hyperdimension Neptunia starts off with a battle between the three goddesses (Xbox 360, Play Station 3, and Wii) versus the fourth goddess—Sega Neptune, the personification of the Sega Neptune that never came to be. Following her loss, Neptune loses her memory and gets turned into a preteen loli. An unknown force then sends her out on a mission to stop the piracy monsters running rampant in the gaming world. To do that, she needs to find a book that holds the secrets of the world... and hopefully win the three other goddesses to her side for good.
Along the way, she gets to meet up with other various people who are the moe personification of Gust, Nippon Ichi, Idea Factory, and Compile Heart. 5pb and Red Entertainment are also available as DLC characters.
Sadly, the game was plagued by issues cause by the complete lack of a budget. Luckily, however, it sold well anyway, and kicked off a series of games that still runs to this very day.
There is also a manga that details the events following the normal ending.
Was later remade as Hyperdimension Neptunia Rebirth 1, which uses the battle engine from Victory and changes the storyline due to not being able to use all the same characters from the original release. However, it is set in a different version of the original game universe to reflect this, though the original game is not connected.
- Absurdly High Level Cap: There's a total of four DLC updates that bump up the level cap in 200 and 300 level increments. Eventually, the level cap can be upped to 999!
- Ape Shall Never Kill Ape: During the events on Leanbox where the trio agrees to help the Parliment with the Basilicom, IF specifically states the party will not get involved in missions attacking other humans.
- Excised in Rebirth 1, where the events in Leanbox are quite different.
- Bribing Your Way to Victory: For a small fee of real money, one can pay to get a few stat augmentations for various characters. These are large enough to make the game a breeze.
- The Cameo: Macaroon from Trinity Universe surprisingly appears as a boss to a couple of the sidequests.
- Calling Your Attacks: Darjeeling Rotation! Turbulence Candy!
- Character Blog: All three goddesses have one. They're mostly just Seinfeldian Conversation material, such as Black Heart going slightly cat-crazy and White Heart discussing how tangerines "kick ass".
- Changed in Rebirth 1, where the character blogs are somewhat more game event relevant and less random sounding.
- Cool Ship: In the opening sequence, we see a jet plane while Neptune is being shown. Fans would assume that since this is an RPG, this is what people are gonna be using as a mode of transportation even though you don't travel on the world map. However, later on in the game, Neptune as Purple Heart gets a second Limit Break where SHE transforms into that jet and fires off a Wave Motion Gun. Sadly, no ramming attack even though the design really screams that the ship rams at opponents.
- Cut and Paste Environments: One of the letdowns of the game is that you see backgrounds from Record of Agarest War, Trinity Universe, and Ar tonelico. You also see monsters that were seen in Cross Edge and Trinity Universe.
- Death as Comedy:
Jade: I'm a member of the Guild. I live on Leanbox, but I don't follow Lady Green Heart...
IF: ...And that's that. You finished him off.
- Due to changes in the storyline, this doesn't happen in Rebirth 1 at all, since Jade was excised.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: You may have goddesses on your side, but several party members are just regular humans and only two of them have any serious combat experience. The game's backstory reveals that humans beating up an evil goddess has happened at least once before and the road to Celestia was sealed off to keep bad humans from attempting it.
- Changed in Rebirth 1's plot, but the same basic effect can be achieved ingame by defeating any Goddess level or higher foe with only human characters.
- Don't Try This At Home: Said by Gust in a scene where she mixes a bunch of different energy drinks together.
- Duel Boss: Neptune vs. Arfoire later in the game.
- When you are trying to rally a goddess under your banner, they will join you only if you beat them in a one-on-one. Green Heart, despite her passiveness during her arc, packs a bloody punch and can kill you in two shots.
- Rebirth 1 changes the story so the above fight with Arfoire does not happen until the very end of the game. and it's part of the True Ending, so it's not a losable event.
- Early Bird Cameo: For newcomers who start the series with Rebirth 1, the optionally recruitable CPU candidates count, as do DLC characters Plutia and Peashy.
- Edible Smelling Salts: This trope is used to get Neptune to eat an antidote to poison.
- Emoticon: Histoire seems to really like using this in her fairy mode.
- Empty Levels: Anything past Lv. 99 can feel like this, as you get only one point per stat and no increases to HP or AP. The exception is Item Skill points, which increase by two and can help up the activation percentage rates.
- Fixed in Re:Birth 1, with dungeons and bosses that require the extra stats gained from all those extra levels.
- Exiled From Continuity: A lot of elements and characters from the original game were excised in the remake due to either being NISA specific and thus not available for use, or because parts of the original plot would not work with the changed elements introduced in Rebirth 1.
- Genre Savvy: What does Neptune say when she discovers Jade dying?
Neptune: Oh, yep. Death flag triggered. I kinda guessed he was one of those gonna-die-NPCs when I met him. Is he okay?
- In Rebirth 1, Neptune is quite aware of RPG tropes and tries to game the system, as it were, to her advantage multiple times. Unfortunate, it backfires at one point when she finds out Ganache is a big fan of Blanc and tries to get Blanc to get on his good side. He's a fan of his idealized version of Blanc, and the swearing, cranky side of her convinces him she's a fake.
- The Glomp: Neptune does this to Noire in one scene. She does it to Compa many times, too.
- Gondor Calls for Aid: Neptune wants the other goddesses to help, but they don't want to. She has to beat the crap out of them again to make them help.
- Gratuitous English: The initial names and descriptions for the trophies in the Japanese version had started out in English, but none of them seemed to have been proofread, so you get garbage like "deAtearmine" coming up. For reference, here's the trophy list for the Japanese version, and the list for the English version. Now, the English version's trophy list has superseded the Japanese one; anyone playing either version will see the English version's proper trophy list rather than the Japanese version's garbage one.
- The Gods Must Be Lazy: The goddesses spend more time on their personal affairs and bonking heads than actually running their lands. Vert averts this later in the game by going out and actively fighting monsters.
- Guide Dang It: It's an Idea Factory game, which means an incredibly obscure undocumented system must be used to reach the Golden Ending.
- The game fails to mention that Neptune dying in battle has a hidden penalty and that if she dies too many times it can permanently lock you out of events — including the events to reach said ending!
- Fixed in Rebirth 1, where this mechanic was excised.
- Have You Seen My God?: Planeptune's Basilicom is understandably upset when Purple Heart doesn't show up when the goddesses start arriving. And in the Golden Ending, all four goddesses call it quits and leave Historie to create a new goddess to rule in their place.
- Rebirth 1 changes these events considerably the Golden Ending is also completely different., and Neptune at first is not recognized as a Goddess by the Planeptune Basilicom, though this changes later.
- In-Series Nickname: Compa, and later Vert, call Neptune as Nep-Nep.
- Vert later calls IF Iffy (Ai-chan in Japan), which flusters IF to no end.
- Thunder Tits for Green Heart, as coined by White Heart.
- Ganache is called "Solicitor" by IF or "Mr." Solicitor by Compa.
- Jerkass: Ganache. He assigns the task of finding a rare ore to the party, and confines them in an abandoned building set to explode. Afterwards it turns out that was only a diversion, as stated by IF when Chian's factory is being sieged by Avenir robots.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He later gets over himself.
- Large Ham: Invoked by Neptune at one point, who is chewed out for screwing around during the Lowee arc of Rebirth 1.
- Limit Break: Neptune's "Neptune Break" as well as Nisa's "ZHP Legend!!"
- Everyone has more than one of these in Rebirth 1.
- Lost Forever: Anything that only appears in a story dungeon, including monsters.
- Averted in Rebirth 1, where all dungeons are revisitable and further prevented by the New Game Plus feature.
- Menstrual Menace: IF assumes Arfoire is doing this the first time they fight.
- Changed to more generic references to Arfoire being over the hill in Rebirth 1.
- Mood Whiplash: Jade's final moments are filled with this.
Neptune: What's up? A favor? Ask me anything! Oh, but no touching. Got it? No touching!
- Rebirth 1 goes through this towards the end, where the mostly lighthearted plot gets quite a bit darker when Arfoire starts going full blown Omnicidal Maniac.
- Never Trust a Trailer: The game advertises that you get to play as the goddesses in the middle part (or at the very least, early-middle part) of the game. You only get to play with them in the final dungeon and possibly post-game.
- Changed in Rebirth 1, where you get Noire fairly early for a time, she leaves for story reasons and returns later, you get Vert not long after and she sticks around for most of the game save a few story scenes as well as Blanc when she shows up.
- Nobody Poops: Averted in one instance where Nep-Nep nearly misses out on Nisa's introduction by spending most of the preceding battle on the toilet.
- Averted in another cutscene where Neppermint admits to being a little too excited about a visitor.
- Face a foe who's a significant number of levels above you and Nep-Nep might start the fight by requesting a change of underwear.
- No Ontological Inertia: Averted in all of the endings.
- Obvious Beta: Admittedly due to its nearly non-existent budget.
- Averted with the Rebirth 1 Updated Rerelease, which uses a streamlined Victory engine and stripped out all the older mechanics that didn't work well in the original.
- One-Time Dungeon: All dungeons that are part of a story scenario.
- Averted in Rebirth 1.
- One-Winged Angel: Arfoire.
- Palette Swap: Many of the monsters use this.
- Rank Inflation: Most of the dungeons have timers on them. The faster you finish the dungeon via beating the boss, finding the secret treasure, or getting lucky with item drops from random encounters, the better your rank will be. This always often leads to a Bragging Rights Reward when you beat the record times of other players.
- Removed in Rebirth 1.
- Restored My Faith in Humanity: Nisa spends one series of events chasing down a pair of bandit brothers. When she saves them from a monster, the duo realize it's not such a Crapsack World out there, pull a Heel Face Turn and decide to help others for a change.
- Saving the World
- Scripted Battle: The first "battle" in the game is Purple Heart vs. the three other CPUs.
- Changed to a cutscene in Rebirth 1.
- Skill Slot System: Characters level up and learn skills, though there's special ones, called SP Skills, which are unique to each characters.
- Skinship Grope: It's implied Neptune does this to Compa during one of the events when she invites her for some Bathtub Bonding, but nothing is shown except IF describing it.
- The Syndicate: The Guild. Divided into two groups; Moderatists, who are criminal only in that they don't worship the goddess of their world but are otherwise completely normal people, and Extremists who are willing to resort to violence over pretty much anything.
- Rebirth 1 has a different storyline, so this never comes up.
- Thanking The Player: In both endings, the main trio directly thanks you for getting them through the game.
- Theme and Variations Soundtrack: Each landmass's theme is remixed for the landmass's dungeons as well as the battles within said dungeons. The title theme has also been remixed and used in various cutscenes.
- Transformation Sequence: The four goddesses every time you have them transform in the middle of a battle. Fortunately, you can always skip it by pressing L2.
- Transforming Mecha: Later in the game, Neptune transforms into the jet plane seen in the opening credits as one of her Limit Breaks.
- True Final Boss: Arfoire becomes significantly stronger if you face her after recruiting all the goddesses.
- The conditions for this were changed somewhat in Rebirth 1, since you must recruit all the CPUs as part of the storyline.