Home » The Longest Five Minutes – Review

The Longest Five Minutes – Review

300 seconds to save the world and recover your memories in comedic RPG fashion.

Note: Screenshots are taken while playing in Japanese. All screenshots will be translated or be described. Naturally, the game is available to play in English by just changing the settings in the main menu.

HISTORY:

The Longest Five Minutes or Sekaiichi Nagai Gofunkan, was developed by Nippon Ichi Software. Famous for their Disgaea series among others, comes a traditional RPG with a twist.

STORY:
You play as the hero, FlashBack. Name notwithstanding, you don’t remember a single thing. Now that is fine for most RPGs and is even a cliché to a point, but not when your memory loss happens right in front of the final boss known as the Demon King.

“Flash Back. Age 17.” The hero of the story remembers his name four-game seconds in. Other party members starting after Flash are, in order from left to right,Yuzu, Regent, and Clover on the top-left.

So Flash’s three good childhood friends: Yuzu Nanakarobi, a strong martial artist bursting with energy; Clover Shirotsumekusa, a reserved and caring priestess; and Regent Nightfever, a bard with a sharp tongue, are all there to help Flash recover his memories and beat the final boss.

The story is charming and tends to go more for the humor side. It is rather short for an RPG and can be like 12 hours long or so for a regular run. There are multiple endings for this game: a bad ending, normal ending, and a good ending. Spoiler-wise, I won’t get into them in this review.

GRAPHICS:

The graphics are explicitly a throwback to old-school dot-style role-playing games. It feels like Dragon Quest and Mother put together style-wise. Both game series I highly recommend on their own as well. The backgrounds, world, and battles definitely show their influence in this game.

Finding things in pots is core Dragon Quest among others. Search them in towns and dungeons alike to help you in the memory. The mushroom artwork that appears in many caves and dungeons is reminiscent of Mother 2 (Earthbound) in my opinion. Many other things like the door noise when you enter a room and stairs noise are also throwbacks to games like them.

GAMEPLAY:

The Longest Five Minutes is a very traditional RPG divided into chapters that are a game minute long each. So there are five chapters, any of which can be returned to. Within those chapters are sections known as memories. They are basically pieces of the story segmented and upon completion of them you get bonus experience and they advance the story.

During the battle with the Demon King, you are sometimes given a choice. Different choices can open up different memories.

[“Regent” / “I don’t remember” Regent: Do you recognize me? Say my name!] Sometimes you are given a choice. Different choices can open up different memories. You can always revisit these choices to get different results.

Should you need to, you can always re-live memories and get more re-experience points if you feel you aren’t strong enough for a current memory.

Notice that there is a timer when you are in battle with the Demon King as in the above screenshot. It is not an actual clock in the normal sense. Usually, ticks go by as a character finishes their dialogue and pauses altogether when a memory comes up and the RPG portion of the game kicks in.

Battles are random-encountered and can tend to be of a higher frequency like older games from the Famicom (Nintendo Entertainment System) era of RPGs especially if you use the run function a lot which will make it seem even worse. However, starting at memories when you are base level 13, a repel spell is learned and can be used to ward off random battles. It is very helpful for those who want to avoid the high encounter rate, repeat memories without the battles, and those who would rather focus on the story.

A regular turn-based battle with a first-person perspective akin to many earlier RPGs. The influence taken from series like Mother and Dragon Quest is quite apparent in my opinion.

Exclamation point bubbles help the player indicate who to talk to further the story along. This goes for side-quests as well. Although in this case, side-quests consist of fulfilling the trophy condition for each memory in order to get bonus experience points.

The screen shown upon completion of a memory. The trophies indicate whether you have completed side-quests or not. The first trophy is usually just the main quest while the others are side-quests. These bonus experience points go to your re-experience level and carry over.
[The parties’ re-experience level goes from level 0 to level 2.] Pretty much the only thing that carries over in the game as you progress. Think of it as bonus stats to whatever level your party starts at in a memory. Stats that potentially get a bonus are maximum hit points, maximum magic points, power, magic power, defense, speed, and luck.
[That’s right. I remember!] The transition screen upon completion of memory back to final battle with the Demon King.

One huge thing you will notice when you transition from one memory to the next is that items, money, and equipment do not carry over. So you don’t really have to get any items should you choose to. Fighting still matters though to an extent because of the added bonus stats the re-experience level gives you unless you feel powerful enough each time you start a memory to finish it.

MUSIC:

The music is very well done and a nice surprise. The opening theme and the regular boss battle themes are two of my favorites. The composer is Yukinari Irumagawa and the soundtrack can be purchased on steam.

Summary
The Longest Five Minutes is a solid game with elements from role-playing games of yore. It adds humor and gives its own take on the troupe of amnesia in many video games. While relatively short, the game is kind of easy. Perhaps because items, equipment, and money are at a predetermined level for each memory, the base stats and level given are already adequate to beat each memory. Maybe it is because you don't really need to grind or use much strategy. Either way, the game is fun and should be checked out for a great game with great music.
Good
  • Great humor
  • Battles are avoidable early if you tire of them
  • Fantastic music
  • A throwback to some great RPGs
Bad
  • Relatively easy
  • No item, equipment, or money carryover from memory to memory
  • Quite short for a RPG
8
Great
Written by
Been playing games basically since before I could read and not just RPGs | Love the arts | Love a good story |

Have your say!

3 0

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Lost Password

Please enter your username or email address. You will receive a link to create a new password via email.