Playstation's answer to Monster Hunter.
If there's one field every Monster Hunter clone has bested Monster Hunter in is on the story, and this game is no exception. Basically, a few years ago the 'Awakening' happened, which brought demons, or Oni, into the world, and now humans fight for survival. You play as a new arrival, a created character of your choice, to the Utakata Village, and quickly prove your worth as an Slayer. And y'know, being one of these games, your character actually has some particular abilities unique to himself that quickly make him stand out from the rest. On the hunt you'll be joined by 7 other hunters, each one having their own story arc to go through, and while they are not mindblowing, they are interesting at the very least. I absolutely loved the Japanese art direction they took, Oni are clearly inspired in Japanese folklore and ancient art, while the armor pieces are very, very Japanese,
The game offers a more than decent amount of different weapons, and they each have different styles: The twin knives allow for easy aerial combos, fists allow you to deal extra damage if you time button presses, and rifles allow for distant combat, to name a few. There's bound to be at least one type of weapons that suits your style. Regardless, none of the movesets felt as... deep as movesets in Monster Hunter, but the game plays much, much faster which I liked a lot. The game also offers a ton of customization thanks to Mitama, orbs that grant the player passive effects, as well as different 'spell' set ups. And there's a ton of different spells, and once you get high tier weapons, you can carry more than one Mitama, which allows for a bigger spell pool, of up to four, and even more passive skills, up to three per Mitama. And these allow you to heal yourself, enhance your strength or even temporarily allowing you to leech life off enemies. It's also a lot easier, not only do you have 3 useful CPU allies that can revive you, but you can send your Tenko, a foxy creature of sorts, before each mission to gather materials from the environment, and if you send him to the stage the mission takes place, you may run across him and he'll aid you in battle! And, later on, you will also be able to send party members on previously cleared missions from previous chapters to gather even more materials, including boss materials.
I think I may like Toukiden more than Monster Hunter. I think the Mitama system is better than having to produce and buy items, like potions, or whatever. It's more convenient and less time consuming. time better spent hunting monsters. While on Monster Hunter you have to catch bugs, with a net, minerals, with a pick-axe, fish, with a rod AND be on the look out for shiny spots on the ground, here you need only look for the shiny spots on the ground. Sending Tenko to the different environments, and party members on missions for even more materials help alleviate a lot of the unnecessary grinding, which I also found both convenient and smart. I like having actually useful party members, as opposed to silly little critters with limited damage output and uselessness of deciding to cure me after I healed me myself. And if you want to go oldschool, you can simply leave your party members behind. That said, I wasn't a big fan of the purifying system, however, the CPUs are relatively smart, so you can just focus on hacking and slashing away while some of them go stand over them and purify them for you,
Toukiden Kiwami is a fantastic game, it just might be my favorite Monster Hunter clone yet. It's probably the easiest one as well until you get into the latter chapters, some of the optional missions can be downright brutal. However, as much as I liked the game, these games are very, very repetitive, and as much as the game tries to alleviate the grind, you will eventually have to fight a boss more than once to craft that shiny new piece of armor, which is something to keep in mind. Regardless, for Monster Hunter fans that like the genre not exclusively for the challenge would do well to give it a look.
9.0 out of 10