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    Nioh 2 – The Complete Edition review

    Need to know

    What is it? Samurai Dark Souls mixed with Team Ninja’s weapon devotion.
    Expect to pay £50/$50
    Developer Team Ninja
    Publisher Koei Tecmo
    Reviewed on AMD Ryzen 7 1700X, Gigabyte RTX 2080 Super, 32Gb RAM
    Multiplayer? 2-3 (online)
    Link Official site

    $22.48 (opens in new tab)View at Amazon (opens in new tab)$39.99 (opens in new tab)View at Best Buy (opens in new tab)See all prices (3 found)

    Stumbling into the first boss after slashing through a riverside village beset by demons, I begin to chip away at a screen-dominating health bar with my looted purple ninja knife. Only a little falls off before it roars, plunging me into a dark world and then summarily killing me with its saw-bladed cleaver. Sure. I’ve played Dark Souls. I know you’re not meant to be able to beat the first boss. This is just flavour. And then I respawn, and realise that, no, this is just the start of the mountain to come.

    Nioh 2 isn’t any other Soulslike; it’s what Team Ninja call ‘masocore’. Building on the tricky challenges of the first game, here things get even bigger and badder. But, among other evolutions on their own genre intricacies, so too can you get a little bigger and badder.

    The large arsenal of possible weapons aren’t your only tools for spilling hot yokai blood. Your custom character is half-yokai themselves. Not only does this mean you can spend meter to enter a powered up state of demon-slapping fury, but that you can harvest the powers of defeated demons (like a Kurosawa-directed Mega Man). Having access to these super moves is a surprisingly fresh twist on the genre, giving you the option to literally press a ‘whack it with a giant hammer’ button if you just want to dish out some easy damage and take a breather.

    Nioh 2 Complete Edition screens

    (Image credit: Koei Tecmo)

    It’s a world as lonely as you want to make it, too. Up to two friends can be summoned in to fight by your side (making the game much easier). Ghost data, previously the reserve of duels with player spirits where they’d been killed, can also be used to summon friendly AI-controlled assistance.

    In my experience performance was great, easily handling a smooth 60fps, and even supporting 120fps (which has a tougher time when particle effects are buzzing away). At time of writing, there were issues with the keyboard overlay not displaying, but I have to recommend a controller for this one anyway. Thanks to the quickfire stance shifting and pulse timing, playing this on keyboard is the domain of those who love to touch type business emails directly into cryptographic ciphers. There’s some noticeable pop-in on some far off enemies, and some environment textures look a little dated, but the character designs and effects are on point, and its in-depth photo mode is one of the best around.

    Nioh 2 runs and plays beautifully. Ever since Dark Souls set the world alight, FromSoftware have had plenty of imitators come for the crown. Often, even the better ones come with the caveat of not being as good. Nioh 2, though, evolves what was already unique about Nioh into something that Team Ninja can very much call their own. It might be operating in the same genre space, but Nioh 2 has its own flavour, and it’s like nothing else out there.

    TODAY’S BEST DEALS$22.48 (opens in new tab)at Amazon (opens in new tab)$39.99 (opens in new tab)at Best Buy (opens in new tab)

    As seen on PCgamer

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