Otaku USA Magazine
How Neural Cloud Shines Through in Owl City’s “Up to the Cloud”

Owl City in the world of Neural Cloud

If you’re a fan of Adam Young’s music project Owl City, you’re probably very familiar with his unique lyrical stylings. The same man who sings about hopes, dreams, faith, and friendship also did a song about how Christmas shopping is hard. And another about how his dentist is probably laughing at him. What we’re saying is he has range… and that, combined with his signature electronic style, made him a good fit for Neural Cloud.

The Girls’ Frontline spinoff approached the musician to provide a new song for its global launch this week, and he provided. And while you can enjoy the tune with no context, we kind of love how it lays out key elements of the new game’s storyline. Listen along and read on:


“I want a return to the real world…”

I want a return to the real world

These days, this line hits hard. Sometimes it feels like the things we’ve been going through lately just can’t be real. And on a more personal scale, when you’re in a bad place, you just want to get back to normality. But in terms of Neural Cloud, this line is quite literal.

You step into the shoes of the “Professor,” using their cloud data to enter the world of Magrasea and help a band of lost digitized Dolls. That’s all well and good, but will you be able to get home after your digitized consciousness has been uploaded?


“Cuz if I fail, you won’t return…”

Cuz if I fail you won't return

On its own, this could be any kind of sentiment. Reaching out to help a friend, going the extra mile for someone who needs you. But in Neural Cloud, this sentiment is quite literal. The digitized Dolls stranded in Magrasea need you to bring them home.

And it’s not just a matter of rescuing stranded Dolls. There’s also the actual Professor to bear in mind. What was their fate? Could they be brought home and restored like the scattered Dolls? As you battle your way through Magrasea, the answers will (hopefully) come to light.


“Back me up to the Cloud…”

If I get lost in the crowd, back me up to the cloud

Sometimes Owl City just says things… sometimes wordplay, sometimes evocative phrases that may not make complete sense, but take your brain where it needs to go. As metaphorical as it could be, we know by now he’s referencing the primary mechanic and narrative hook of Neural Cloud.

The project after which the game is named took place in the Girls’ Frontline universe, and sought to back up the consciousnesses of Dolls to a Cloud to protect them from being irrevocably damaged. But after the “Wipe-Off Incident” that scattered these consciousnesses, it seems there could be more to this project than meets the eye.

“Up to the Cloud” goes live on music streaming sites on Friday, November 25.

Do a full-dive into these anime about virtual reality!

Kara Dennison

Kara Dennison is a writer, editor, and presenter with bylines at Crunchyroll, Sci-Fi Magazine, Sartorial Geek, and many others. She is a contributor to the celebrated Black Archive line, with many other books, short stories, and critical works to her name.