The revamped Last Recode compilation contains a completely new episode that gives players a few more hours with Haseo's beloved friends in The World. Let's take a look if vol. 4//Reconnection provides a satisfying conclusion to the epic .hack//G.U. story.
At the beginning of Reconnection, we see Haseo attempting to break Ovan out of a large chunk of ice. No matter how hard he attacks, he just can't break it. Soon after, Haseo meets a new character named Kusabira. She's a mysterious young girl who bears a striking resemblance to Zelkova, the leader of the Moon Tree guild. She seems to get confused all the time about who she is talking to as she constantly addresses other people as Haseo. Along with Kusabira joining the cast, there's also a new enemy to fight: a large creepy baby by the name of Vegalta that surrounds itself with smaller enemies. This beast has been showing up out of nowhere and eating everything in its path whether it's PCs, NPCs, or objects. Haseo takes on Vegalta a few times throughout the three hour long episode, each time with increasing intensity but not enough of a challenge for me to be worried about dying. At least it gives some structure to this short episode.
Haseo unlocks his fifth and final form in Reconnection, donning a cool-looking black and white cape and a big tattoo across his chest. At the beginning of Reconnection, his epitaph is taken from him by Zelkova in an attempt to make sure that the presence of his powerful epitaph doesn't upset the balance in the game world. However, we soon find out that the new mysterious character Kusabira is essentially made out of AIDA. This means that if AIDA's presence can exist then Haseo's epitaph can also exist and the good vs. bad energy will remain stable. Zelkova unlocks Haseo's epitaph and in doing so, he grants him the fifth form.
When Haseo realises the power that his fifth form grants him, he returns to where Ovan is trapped in ice and manages to free him. Ovan is hence woken from his coma in the real world. Immediately after Ovan is freed, Kusabira fuses with him which helped bring him back to a woken state. From this point onward, you're playing as Haseo and Ovan while gunning for the destruction of the Vegalta beast. Haseo loses the ability to use his other weapons and can only use a new sword/whip weapon in the battles that ensue. I was a little disappointed by this as I quite enjoyed swapping between weapons depending on the enemies I was fighting.
The difficulty of the enemies also required me to constantly use skills to take them out. You get eight new skills in the fifth form and each one plays a neat animation and appears as if it does a lot of damage although it will only actually take out about half of the average enemy's HP. The last battle with Moralta is cool in how there are multiple forms where it keeps rotating and you have to fight back the swarms of monsters with the epitaph while dodging lasers then dashing in to attack quickly when its defenses are down.
After the final battle and the credits played, I joined up again with Ovan to go on one last adventure with him and Atoli. I wish there were some new dungeons in Reconnection to enjoy but instead, we just hung out in an existing one that always makes me want to play Tomb Raider for some reason. Another set of credits played after this friendly encounter and I finally completed the series.
Reconnection certainly isn't justified as a standalone game but it's a neat addition that I'm glad they included in this collection rather than making me pay extra for it. What are your thoughts on the final volume?