Review: Toukiden 2 (PS4).
Toukiden 2 is the second part of the series, which is mainly about eliminating the great demons from Japanese mythology. However, we will find much more here, because the game looks more like a typical jRPG than another game about hunting monsters. So is it worth reaching for?
Toukiden 2 tells a story about people fighting demons. The action of the game is set in a fantastic version of medieval Japan, where humanity is plagued by demons. However, there are warriors who have the power to face the threat. We create one of these warriors right after starting a new game. The editor is not particularly extensive, but it allows you to choose our character, among others. hairstyle, facial features or gender. There are so many options that most will find something for themselves. After creating and naming the hero, we end up in the prologue, where we will fight for the fate of the whole world, but during the fight we are unexpectedly transported 10 years into the future. The protagonist, not remembering what happened, wakes up in an unknown place. Soon he is transferred to the village of Mahoroba, where he learns about the current situation and what really happened. After gaining the trust of the inhabitants, he becomes a fighter again and helps in the fight for survival.
Description of the plot Toukiden 2 sounds pretty clichéd, but as the fun progressed, this one pleasantly surprised me. It is based on well-known patterns and archetypes of characters known from Japanese productions, but it can keep the tension. The more that, in addition to the fight between people and demons, we also got the theme of an internal conflict between the two factions and many smaller, but interesting threads. In the end, I didn’t get bored with the content, although the whole thing was predictable. The scenario is also not unnecessarily extended with some stuffers, so you can get to know it in less than 30 hours. What’s more, after defeating the main opponent, a further game awaits us, in which we perform side tasks and fight more powerful demons.
Toukiden 2 in many ways it resembles a typical representative of the Japanese RPG. Initially, we get a small piece of the world map at our disposal, but as we go through the events, we go further and further away from the village. In such an open world, we will have to fight many opponents, collect raw materials and materials for developing weapons, and help the characters we meet. In later stages, there is the possibility of immediate movement between the discovered areas, so there is no need to travel great distances on foot. We receive additional tasks both from the characters found on the map and in the headquarters, but they are not very diverse. It could be finding the right resources or other characters, or simply defeating demons. Throughout the game, I did them occasionally and I must admit that, despite a little variety, I did not have time to get bored with them, and the profits from doing them are of great importance – they can not only enlarge the offer of shops or restaurants in the village, but also significantly help in improving the equipment.
Toukiden 2 it is largely based on long duels with monsters, often several times larger than our hero. The choice of weapons and the combat system are so varied that the clashes are exciting, although sometimes they last even several minutes, and the last fictional fight took me almost half an hour. There are nearly ten kinds of weapons, each of which has a hundred different representatives. So there is a lot to choose from and it is on this basis that we decide what our character will be like, because we can change the class whenever we want. We can choose short and long swords, heavy gloves, spears, whip and even shotguns. Apart from weapons, there are of course various types of armor that not only affects the statistics, but also changes the appearance of our hero. However, what looks the most interesting is Demon Hand – a special skill that allows you to summon a “demonic hand”. It will serve us mainly in combat, but it will also facilitate exploration – like a rope with a hook, it will allow us to get to places located a bit higher.
IN Toukiden 2 it is very important to strategically attack the opponent by depriving him of sensitive body parts – this way we will not only weaken the opponent, but also, if we perform the cleansing ritual, we will gain new materials for improving weapons. The aforementioned “demonic hand” diversifies and helps in combat. We can use it to jump towards the opponent located a bit further, make it easier for us to get to the part of the body that interests us and, after meeting the appropriate conditions, tear it off. Our comrades also have this ability, thanks to which the fight becomes easier, more interesting and more spectacular. In addition to the selection of weapons and the use of the demonic hand, we can use the souls of fallen warriors – appropriate configurations will give us new attacks or skills that facilitate the fight – it can be imposing a negative status on the opponent or avoiding death by obtaining temporary immortality. You can also take advantage of the bathing beach, eat dinner in a restaurant or pray in the temple – each of these activities will increase our statistics for a while and help develop a bond with the souls of warriors. There are a lot of possibilities and thanks to this the gameplay does not stop captivating.
Toukiden 2 unfortunately it has its problems. In the approximately 40 hours I spent with this title, I ran into the lack of a proper tutorial, which made me a bit confused at first. I also had problems with the camera, which at times went crazy, showing me something I could not define – it was when my character had an opponent in front of him and a wall behind his back. The worst thing in a similar situation was that the camera could not be better positioned because it blocked various obstacles. I was also bothered by inconvenient controls – especially in situations where I wanted to run to the enemy and then use a special skill. Unfortunately, the command to run faster and use special abilities is under the same button, so often there was a problem with immediately switching from one activity to another.
Toukiden 2 it does not present the highest level when it comes to audiovisual setting. The graphics are a bit dated, as are the stiff character animations, but the locations and characters look nice due to the good design. Very rarely there were small drops in animation, which did not affect the quality, especially the quality of the game. The sound of the game is nothing fancy, but sounds heard from far away are weirdly muffled, which doesn’t sound like the best. On the other hand, the music is the most enjoyable and can catch your ear. I am glad to be able to listen to songs from the appropriate menu, which I used several times. Animated cutscenes also look nice, although again – this is not today’s level.
Finally, I will mention online gameplay. Toukiden 2 allows up to four players to have fun together. We can create a lobby or search for a room that interests us, but we must remember that what sessions we find depends on the stage we are at. So we will not play against players in the second phase, while we are only in the first. However, I had no problem finding companions for the game and I had a great time. It is true that in cooperation we will only be able to hunt monsters, but it is a lot of fun. The more that convenient communication has been ensured thanks to ready-made messages and emotes, and the network code itself works very well.
Despite some disadvantages, Toukiden 2 offers at least several dozen hours of great fun. This is not a typical Monster Hunter clone, because we get a fairly large world with a lot of moderately interesting things to do and a well-written story. The gameplay itself, thanks to the current solutions and mechanics, is addictive enough. You can accuse the production of outdated graphics or problems with control and camera, but it does not change the fact that it is worth trying. For the sake of playing with others on the Web.