There are 13 heroines in The Idolmaster: Platinum Stars. Each of these young women want to be famous. They are all good singers and dancers, with A+ personalities. They’re also all pretty much dumped on you by your boss at 765 Productions. The only way you can swiftly succeed is if you do the opposite of what most The Idolmaster entries require: diversify.
The Idolmaster: Platinum Stars begins as many entries in the series do. You pick one idol to act as your group’s leader. You work with her a bit, before rounding out your ranks with another two characters to create a trio. In most installments, you cap out at five characters. Once you have your quartet, you’re done. All your efforts go into making those three to five singers famous, putting together promotional opportunities, arranging classes and nailing auditions.
With The Idolmaster: Platinum Stars, you don’t get that luxury. You can’t tap out once five performers are part of your group. Every time your producer rank rises, another woman comes under your wing. Considering early performances limit you to a trio, it may feel like you should follow the same path as previous games. There are moments when it can feel like a more focused approach is best. That’s the exact opposite of the strategy you should employ.
Real success in The Idolmaster: Platinum Stars comes from treating your singers as equals. Each idol has a level and rank. Both increase based on experience from actions. As long as she participates in a performance, she’ll receive credit for that, gaining experience that increases her level and fans that can help her reach the test for the next rank.
Reasons for wanting to reach the next level are obvious. Like RPG heroes, The Idolmaster performers have Appeal, Burst and Omoide (Memories). Each of these determines how many points that character will help you earn when successfully performing a song. Appeal is tied to general number of points earned as you play, Burst to the amount of points acquired during the brief extreme burst moment of a song, and Omoide appeal applies to points earned when that particular kind of appeal comes up at set points during a track. The total sum of all performers in a group during a song determines how high your score could be. Keeping everyone at a similar level means every performance could be a success. This is especially essential during the all star and medley events held four times a year in-game.
Keeping all idols at about the same rank is a little less-so. In The Idolmaster: Platinum Stars, rank determines the concert availability for the group. Let’s say Michibiku’s Azusa is a C-rank idol. When she is the leader, the whole group can perform C-ranked shows. This is good, because those performances offer more experience, fans and money as rewards. With her as leader, I could also go back to even D and E-ranked concerts. If I make the D-rank Chihaya the leader, I’m limited to D-rank shows and lower.
This might not seem so bad, but sticking with one leader denies you important opportunities. A character’s ranking determines the promotional and educational opportunities available to her. Only the current leader can take a class or attend a special event, earning more experience, fans or a stat boost. Your producer rank is tied to idol rankings. You are only allowed one new singer and song each time your avatar ranks up; limiting yourself means it will take longer to add more performers and tracks to your roster. Staying too focused on specific girls can be an unnecessary restriction.
Being well-rounded is one of your most valuable The Idolmaster: Platinum Stars assets. By keeping up with your characters, you’re opening up a world of opportunities. That can only make your experience both easier and more enjoyable.