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Toukiden: Kiwami review

For years the land of Nakatsu Kuni has been under threat of the rampaging Oni menace. Ever since The Awakening some eight years prior the inhabitants of Utakata Village have been fighting a losing battle, the Oni overrunning the other villages and towns, slowly turning the lands into an image of their own private Otherworld hell. In an attempt to fight back warriors known as Slayers patrol the borders, killing any Oni that cross their path, fighting for their way of life whilst making a living carrying out missions for the locals and collecting rare artefacts.

Just to make it clear, these are demons, or Oni as the game calls them, not monsters, so you are not some monster hunter tracking beasts that threaten your land, you are a demon slayer hunting Oni that threaten your land, see, two totally different ideas. Joking aside there are plenty of original ideas in Toukiden: Kiwami but there is no denying that on paper and by the screenshots this is very similar to Capcom’s Monster Hunter series, but scratch away at the surface and this PlayStation exclusive has plenty of its own ideas.

As the new Slayer in town you are welcomed with much revere as the demons are ever present on the boundaries and no sooner are you given your fresh digs, create a face and select which weapon you wish to start with than the alarm bells are sounded, the Oni are coming.

Though Oni killing is a big part of the game it is the customisation of your character that really make it, as this third person action brawler offers you a huge selection of weapons to take to the field, each one with very different styles of attack, ideal for one sort of enemy or another. From a selection of swords to gauntlets for close quarters, ranged weapons like guns or bows and arrows to something in the middle like the sickle and chain or a giant hammer, each weapon has its uses in the field. Though relatively weak to start with every weapon is easily upgraded at the local blacksmith, however the challenging part will be collecting the required items, taking down Oni in a specific way by using the Eye of Truth to target weak areas and then performing the Ritual of Purification to collect their body parts and other resources to create even more powerful weapons. Aside from the many items you can collect from the field, by defeating certain Oni you are also able to find Mitama, the resting spirits of once mighty Slayers. These spirits will join in you in battle not by your side but within your weapons, fusing with steel and wood to boost your attributes, focusing on areas such as healing properties, speed and general offensive powers. Just as choosing the right weapon for the job, fusing the correct Mitama is also vital, with hundreds waiting to be freed and upgraded.

Though you are a newcomer to the village you very quickly make friends with the other Slayers, who, as you progress, join you in battle. These extra players on the battlefield really make the fights more interesting and it is here where the game really differs from Monster Hunter, with the computer AI really creating a functioning team, your comrades in arms input really making a difference plus you are able to issue basic quick commands like assist, attack or gather. They are quite a chatty bunch, shouting rallying cries during battle and also giving nods to when linked moves are available creating even more powerful attacks. 

Being a demon slayer you need demons and Toukiden: Kiwami hosts a ferocious selection of well created beasts that lurk the lands beyond the village; from small fry that only take a few hits to the truly behemoth Oni that require patience, skill and the right tactics to defeat, each one looking great on the PS4 which is quite an achievement considering this is an updated version of Toukiden: The Age of Demons that came out on the PSP and PS Vita. The game however does suffer from the smaller consoles limitations, with maps split into smaller areas that you need to traverse and an over reliance on repeating boss fights.

Though very similar to the Monster Hunter games, Toukiden: Kiwami has plenty of its own ideas and elements that make it stand proudly on its own. Not having played the original I am unable to comment on how much is new to this version but as a newcomer this game entertained thoroughly with its deep and rewarding battle system against some amazing demons and huge selection of weapons to create on offer.

Words by Ash Buchanan.

(Version Tested: PS4)


+ Huge selection of weapons and armour to create and use
+ Lengthy battles that require button bashing and tactics


- Repetitive boss battles

Edited On 07 Apr, 2015

( 1 )
Turniplord's avatar
Turniplord 2 years ago
I love this game - just hate the fact that its been out a week, i paid 39 quid for it and you already have it at 28 quid. Dropped the price way too quick - obviously overcharged all of us who stupidly bought it the day it came out! Regardless i'm loving the game and its already took up most of my week last week.

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