Welcome back, Professor! Now that Project Neural Cloud’s Closed Beta Test has concluded, it has revealed much more information regarding the game than the developer stream.
Below is a summary of everything we have learned so far from various sources, including details on algorithms, function cards, character growth and enhancement, additional details on the Oasis base, and much more! For anything not covered here, it's probably been backported into Part 1 - so give that page another look over!
10/27 update: Function Card Overclock info rewritten for clarity.
Because this is a closed beta, the exact game mechanics, numbers, or even character appearance are not final and subject to change when the game releases for real!
This page was made possible by Xynthexyz and kawa, with special thanks to Ceia for providing much of the screenshots seen below.
All translations are tentative until an official EN release is announced.
Dolls in Project Neural Cloud have a section where they can equip items called Algorithms on 4 by 4 square grids. While only part of the 4x4 grid is unlocked at the start, increasing a Doll's rank/rarity will unlock additional space in each section for equipping Algorithms.
Algorithms provide stat bonuses and set effects that can account for over 30% of a character's overall stats!
Even stats that a character normally has 0 of (like Dodge Rate on Defenders) can be added via Algorithms, though usually not in a significant enough quantity to matter.
Unlike HOC chips in Girls' Frontline, these Algorithms are all rectangular, allowing the player to only care about the number of tiles occupied rather than shape.
Each algorithm has a type that falls into one of three categories limiting where they can be equipped:
- Category A - Stability, for Health and Defense chips.
- Category B - Offense, for Attack and Armor Pierce chips.
- Category C - Special, for Crit Rate and Dodge Rate chips.
Algorithm size varies, with 1x1, 2x1, 2x2, 4x2 chips being seen so far, with bigger chips have larger bonuses. Algorithm stats also scale with rarity; in order from weakest to strongest, they are:
- N (Normal) - Blue
- R (Rare) - Purple
- S (Super Rare) - Orange
You may not equip identical algorithms on the same board. Two algorithms are considered identical if their name matches, which means
- They are of the same Type
- Their have the same Rarity
- They take up the same Number of Tiles
Note that in the above image, The equipped Defense - R2 Algorithm provides 15 Defense while the Defense - R4 Algorithm in the inventory provides 30 Defense, showing that within the same rarity, the base-stat-per-tile remains consistent across different Algorithm dimensions.
However, the Defense - N2 Algorithm only provides 10 Defense (less than that of a Defense - R2), while the Defense - S4 Algorithm provides 35 Defense which exceeds that of the Defense - R4 Algorithm of the same dimensions.
This showcases the fact that higher-rarity Algorithms provide more stats per tile and will ultimately be the type of Algorithm that players will want to fill their boards with in the endgame.
The base stat of each specific algorithm is fixed, but algorithms with 2 or more tiles have lines of bonus stats that are completely random. The below image shows an example of an 8-tile algorithm:
These stats can often be quite useful. In the above example, this algorithm with a base +21.5% Max HP bonus also rolled two Max HP stat lines and one stat line of Dodge Rate, making it an excellent defensive algorithm that is hard to come by.
As a side effect of the bonus stats being available, it's generally more efficient to equip a small number of large Algorithms rather than a larger number of low-tile count Algorithms.
|Algorithm Tile Size||Algorithm Dimensions||Bonus Stat Lines|
S-rarity (orange) Algorithms are named and can provide a set bonus if equipped alongside other algorithms in the same named set.
In the previous section, the 8-tile algorithm shown falls within the "Positive Feedback" set that is oriented towards Healers. Other algorithms within the exact same set are needed - simply equipping other non-matching S-rarity algorithms will not work.
Don't worry if you cannot read Chinese! Algorithm sets are uniquely identified by a large, visible icon that appears both in their item image and their card background, and you can tap on the set icons in the management screen to view the sets from algorithms you have equipped.
Notably, the set bonus must be completed by Algorithms placed in different regions.
For example, the 2-set "Minimum Threshold" bonus shown above was achieved with one S4 Algorithm in Category A and one S4 Algorithm in Category B. To get the 3-set bonus, a third Algorithm belonging to this set must be placed into Category C.
Not all Algorithms have a 3-piece set bonus; some S-rank Algorithms belong to a 2-piece set.
Each character has an Algorithm Effectiveness multiplier that will boost the stats provided by all equipped algorithms. This multiplier starts at 1.0x and can be raised in increments of 0.1x by feeding either unused Algorithms or a special type of EXP item.
This process is extremely expensive, so it is recommended for the player to think carefully about whose Algorithm multiplier really needs to be raised.
|Multiplier Enhancement Step||Algorithm EXP needed|
|1.0x → 1.1x||100|
|1.1x → 1.2x||400|
|1.2x → 1.3x||1200|
Where can I obtain Algorithms?
They drop from Endless Mode, Dailies, Hard story stages, and can be purchased in the Bitcoin shop. Acquired Algorithms are random.
Is minmaxing Algorithms difficult? Do I need a third-party program like the HOC calculator?
There is an auto-equip button that does a generally good job of maximizing stats from your Algorithms. (Auto-equip is not very smart about set bonuses, however, so if you want to apply specific set bonuses, you should add those Algorithms manually.)
Before each battle, there is an interface to swap out units and select Professor Skills.
- 5 Echelon presets are available; at most 7 units can be selected in one echelon, with a max of 5 taking part in one battle.
- 3 Professor Skills may be equipped.
Professor skills come in a few main types, and variants of said types will be unlocked as the Professor levels up. Professor level (Skill Tree level) can be upgraded by using specific EXP materials, or gaining EXP from winning battles.
While many skills are available, only three Professor Skills may be selected at any one time, one skill per archetype.
The UI design implies that different sets of Professor Skills may be available in the future (perhaps like Mystic Codes in FGO?)
After unlocking the Overclock Tower in the Oasis, Overclocks (one-time buffs for each stage) can be bought with Bitcoin. There is a limit of 3 Overclocks per stage, and each Overclock bought for the first time each day is free.
Daily free Overclock capacity will increase with upgrades to the Overclock Tower.
The 4 currently available Overclocks are:
- Increase unit max HP by 5% this stage.
- Bitcoin gain is increased by 50%.
- Gain 1 copy of any Function Card of your choice at the start of the stage.
- Low-level Overclock Towers will provide a random Function Card instead.
- Gain 50 Cache Credits at the start of the stage.
In some battles, the field will have special tiles on it. 4 types of special tiles have been observed so far, though more may be added in the future.
- Leap - Limited to melee units, cannot act for 1 second when battle starts, then teleport to the furthest enemy and attack said enemy.
- Taunt - Multiplies (unknown by how much) defense for 5 seconds when battle starts, and enemies will prioritize attacking the unit on this tile.
- Excitement - The unit on this tile will start the battle with a full SP gauge, allowing for immediate active skill usage on battle start.
- Snipe: Ranged units only, attack range becomes infinite, attack priority becomes the enemy furthest from the unit on this tile.
Players who find a stage too difficult have the option of retreating. This will refund most (sometimes all) of the keys used to enter the stage. The below table shows some preliminary experimentally confirmed values:
Much like GFL’s Combat Simulations, PNC has its own ‘Resource Gathering’ stages to farm resources such as EXP tickets, Bitcoins (yes, it's actually called that), and Algorithms (chips).
These stages have a higher Key cost of 15. You may clear 3 of each stage per day.
The Resource Gathering stage allows the player to choose between gathering Bitcoins, EXP cards, or Algorithms.
All three types of Resource Gathering mission can each be cleared up to 3 times per day, so try to use up these clears daily if possible.
The key (stamina) cost is always 15, so clearing the highest level possible for your units is recommended. Retreating on these stages will refund all 15 keys used to enter it, so don't be afraid to try higher difficulties!
The Fragment Collection missions instead allow you to choose character-specific missions that reward you with their Neural Fragments, one of the resources used to raise Doll rarities.
You can access the fragment collection stages only for characters you currently own. The filter at the top left allows you to filter by faction (e.g. 42LAB, Ultilife, etc.)
Note that the First Clear Bonus is significantly more fragments than the potential random drops awarded from repeat clears (for example, EP02 shown here has a first-time-bonus of 5 guaranteed Persica fragments, but only drops 1 fragment from farming).
Because of this terrible ratio, it is not recommended to farm these stages more than once until you've gotten all the first-clear bonuses.
Each Fragment Collection stage has a daily 1 clear limit and there's a global limit of 10 Fragment Collections per day.
To minmax (assuming this system does not change in the future), it is recommended to spread out your farming among different characters so you gain the most fragments per key.
The Oasis consists of different buildings that generate resources, and renders in a 3D view somewhat reminiscent of GFL's 3D Dorm. Each building can be upgraded with Bitcoins and Hashrate, and the construction process will take some time. Some of the buildings will require special Blueprints to upgrade.
Only one building may be in construction at any given moment. Quick construction tickets each take 10 minutes off the building construction time.
The buildings in the Oasis are as follows:
Increases the efficiency of all resource generators by 1% each level, and increases how many Function Cards can be held.
Leveling up the HQ requires other buildings to be at certain levels first.
Increases construction speed, 10% per level, max level 10.
The Key Collect-Port increases the rate at which keys are generated, as well as the maximum number of keys that can be held before regeneration stops. This building has a max level of 15.
- Key capacity increases by 10 per level, and Key generation speed increases by 0.015 per level.
- At level 1, the capacity is 100 and key generation is 0.06 keys/minute, so 16m40s per key and almost 28 hours to fill capacity from 0.
- At level 15, the capacity is 240 and key generation is 0.27 keys/minute, so 3min42s for 1 key and 14.8 hours for 0 to full.
Because keys are the "AP" or "Stamina" of this game and control how much you can farm, the Key Collect-Port is the most important building to upgrade by far.
Fortunately, it is very easy to upgrade this building to a passable level, and upgrades for this building are not limited by HQ level - so you can directly rush it to 15 if desired.
Increases storage capacity for Bitcoin and Hashrate.
The base cap is 5000 each, while levels 1-5 raise the cap by 5000 each upgrade. After level 5, each upgrade increases the cap by 10000. After level 10, each upgrade increases the cap by 20000. After level 15, each upgrade increases the cap by 50000.
At Level 20, the storage capacity is 435000.
Unlocks Overclocking options, which were explained in detail earlier in this article. The daily free Overclock capacity will be increased to 2 at level 3.
Increases generation rate of Bitcoins by 2% each level, starting at 2% at level 1. Its max level is 15, giving a 30% boost.
Increases generation rate of Hashrate by 2% each level, starting at 2% at level 1. Its max level is 15, giving a 30% boost.
The following structures unlock at HQ level 10 but were nonfunctional in the first Closed Beta Test. It is likely that they are still in development, and were set to unlock at HQ level 10 as a placeholder.
The five buildings are:
Controls the generation and storage capacity of retrieval commands. It is unknown what this is used for, though it is speculated to be related to unit recruitment due to the building's name.
The dorm system, familiar to all Girls' Frontline players.
Controls the % conversion rate of surplus EXP and combat data storage capacity. This is likely analogous to the Data Room of Girls' Frontline.
Controls the generation rate of combat data.
Controls the thread count. It is unknown what threads are used for in the context of Project Neural Cloud.
Note: There is a chance these buildings will be unlocked earlier than HQ level 10 in the actual game or future CBT iterations, and that MICA gated them behind HQ 10 as they have not been fully developed yet. Additional rounds of Closed Beta Testing ought to shed more light on the matter.
Daily and Weekly Missions
There are 10 daily and 10 weekly missions shown so far in the first round of Closed Beta in Project Neural Cloud. These missions may change in the future.
- Buy Keys 1 time.
- Upgrade any building in the Oasis 1 time.
- Upgrade a doll’s Algorithm Efficiency 1 time.
- Spend a total of 50 keys.
- Complete 1 Fragment Collection stage.
- Complete 1 Resource Collection stage. (Bitcoin, EXP, or Algorithm)
- Buy anything at the Supply Station (Bottom right orange tab in menu) 1 time.
- Level up any doll 1 time.
- Receive Construction materials from the exploration map 1 time.
- Clear any main story stage 1 time.
The bottom gauge is ‘Daily Activity rate’, and completing daily missions fills it to grant extra rewards in addition to the rewards associated with each daily mission. Not all daily missions have to be cleared to fill it completely.
- Buy Keys 10 times.
- Upgrade a doll’s Algorithm Efficiency 10 times.
- Complete 10 Fragment Collection stages.
- Log into [Project Neural Cloud] 5 times.
- Level up any doll’s skills 3 times.
- Complete 10 Resource Collection stages.
- Upgrade any building in the Oasis 10 times.
- Spend a total of 500 keys.
- Buy anything at the Supply Station 10 times.
- Clear any main story stage 10 times.
The bottom gauge is ‘Weekly Activity rate’, and completing weekly missions fills it to grant extra rewards in addition to the rewards associated with each weekly mission. Functionally similar to the daily gauge, and not all weekly missions have to be cleared to fill it completely
Hashrate - This is the blue cube thingy, and is a currency used to construct facilities.
Hashrate is obtainable via completing data exploration daily and can be passive gained via infrastructure.
Bitcoins - This is the "B" coin, and the basic currency used to purchase most items.
Unlike real life, bitcoins in Project Neural Cloud are easily obtainable via completing missions, the daily Bitcoin mission, or via passive infrastructure gain.
Quartz Sand - This is the orange premium(?) currency that can be used to purchase energy and exchange for certain items in the shop.
Quartz sand is obtainable via daily/weekly quests and completing missions for the first time. It's likely that this will be one of the possible derivatives of the purchasable currency, which is the other orange currency that so far has not been obtainable.
Cache Credits - This is an in-stage only currency used for buying Function Cards. Obtainable via battle node completion, Anomaly events, and Overclocking.
Neural Component - The rainbow-colored rhombus-shaped currency that is also used to purchase character-specific Neural Fragments. It is probable that this will be obtained from rolling dupes in the gacha.
Now that the Closed Beta Test has ended, we finally have some long-awaited answers to the questions everybody has been asking! Here are a few of the most-requested questions:
Is the game out?
The game is still in beta. While the first round of Closed Beta has just ended, a second round is confirmed and there may even be up to 4 rounds total of Closed Beta plus a possible Open Beta (if the official Project Neural Cloud QQ group can be trusted).
When additional rounds of Closed Beta registration become available, information will be posted to the Project Neural Cloud Discord and the GP Twitter. Feel free to follow either if you'd like to be notified of new Beta Test opportunities!
What are Project Neural Cloud's system requirements?
The official Closed Beta FAQ specified minimum system requirements as follows:
It is recommended that you have at least a Snapdragon 670 / Snapdragon 820 / Kirin 960 / HelioX30 or better processor.
While these appear to be high requirements, the following graphical settings are available:
The game defaults itself to Medium Quality, Medium Textures, 30 FPS and Anti-Aliasing OFF.
High end phones, (at least for this Closed Beta client) can run maxed-out settings with no issues, so the listed requirements may have been designed with the highest graphical settings in mind - as lower end phones are still able to run the game using the default less-graphically-intensive settings.
Beta testers have generally reported good performance with 30/60 FPS and minimal frame drops. For extremely low-end phones, adjusting the Frame Rate had the biggest impact on phone temperature/battery usage, while other settings appear to have a relatively minimal impact on performance.
The client also seems to be more stable than the current Girls' Frontline EN client with very few crash reports.
Will characters that don't have an ultimate get one?
There's no official answer to this yet, but a CN dataminer got their hands on Mai's ultimate animation:
Mai's ultimate is currently not available in-game. This means that there's a high possibility that at least some of the characters who don't currently have a LIMIT skill/ultimate will get one later.
Do you have a Tier List? What's the meta?
With only one week of gameplay available and the game in early beta, it is far too premature to make a tier list since:
- Most of the characters have not been released yet
- Gameplay & Function Card balance is likely to change significantly
Currently, most CN professors are running 2 Medic 2 Defender 1 DPS. However, since there are only 2 Medics and 2 Defenders in the entire game, so does this really mean anything?
Function Cards and the Meta
The issue with a Tier List is that Function Cards ‘dye the lenses’ so to speak, as a single card could multiply some units' power budget by multiple orders of magnitude.
For instance, the Allergic Reaction card attaches an instance of AoE damage to every heal, suddenly turning units like Gin from a simple healer to an extremely potent DPS source that heals your team at the same time.
It's very possible that the addition of a single function card could upend the entire tier list and it's therefore fairly pointless to try and generalize character performance at this point in time. Like with most games of this type, every character’s performance changes with the cards collected in each run. Therefore, the meta will largely depend on the player’s luck, choices and card managing skills.
How long would it take max a character?
Here’s a table that shows the fragment requirements for different character rarities and how long it takes to get them to 5★.
Don't the characters max out at 6★ rarity?
As it turns out, CBT 1 does allow you to raise characters to six-star rarity, costing 100 fragments for 5★ to 5.5★ and 120 fragments for 5.5★ to 6★.
If 6-star rarity is intended, farming a single character to 6 stars would probably take over a month to achieve (although quest/event/gacha fragment rewards may speed this up).
What's the gacha like?
The gacha system had not been released yet when the first round of Closed Beta Testing took place. We do know the following:
- There are three base rarities of units: R, SR, SSR (1/2/3 base stars), but they can all be raised to 5 or 6-star rarity.
- There are so far no whale-only mechanics like NP Level/Potential/Constellations. This means an F2P player's 6-star unit will likely be just as good as a whale's 6-star unit, the time needed to raise one notwithstanding.
- It is speculated (but not confirmed) that dupes will turn into Neural Fragments or Neural Components.
What are the locked buttons on the main screen?
- The Factory, which is possibly a place to upgrade or craft algorithms.
- The Dormitory
- The Digimind Retrieval feature, which is most likely the gacha
Did MICA update the game during CBT?
As a matter of fact, yes! Here's a taste of their patch notes, including a pretty impressive slew of balancing tweaks.
- Increased starting amount of Cache Credits in Endless Mode.
- Balancing for Function Cards:
Quick Reset: Reduced 2% of starting value, 2% of stacking effect
Strike From Death: Starting value 0.7%->0.5%, increasing value 0.5%->0.3%
Allergic Reaction: Changed to normal damage instead of true damage. To compensate, starting value and growth value has been doubled.
- Improved Boss: Mara’s Enemy targeting logic.
- Improved construction rushing’s page information.
- Reduced region building upgrade time.
- Adjusted some stats of certain Algorithms.
- Balancing for Function Cards:
Efficiency First: Increased upper limit of cooldown effect.
Final Strike: Reduced damage to self.
Chain Blows: Base chance 40%->50%, base damage 50%->45%
Offensive Strategy: Base damage 20%->25%, stack growth 10%->15%
- Changed the page information for damage reduction, actual damage reduction cap is 80%.
- Increased the amount of keys that can be bought daily.
Released 【Similarity Data Test】zone, unlocked 15 stages, endless stage and 20 new Function Cards.
Note from Xyn: Only important information such as balance changes are listed here, and not bug fixes and such. (If I didn’t, this section would be twice as long. Trust me.)
What's this "secret boss" I keep hearing about?
Sometimes after defeating the boss of a stage, a bonus boss node will appear. Clearing this node isn’t required to to pass the stage, but it will provide bonus resources as a clear reward.
For an example, see this clip: https://clips.twitch.tv/SilkyTardyVampireSeemsGood
That's all for now! We know for sure that there will be additional rounds of CBT later that you can sign up for, so keep your eyes peeled for those opportunities!
If anyone is able to successfully datamine the Project: Neural Cloud assets (such as the card icons/data, character art, or various other assets), please reach out to us.
Please leave a comment either below or on the forums if you are able to help!