Community Review: Nioh

On Friday night I played the first hour or so of Nioh.


But I'm keen to hear what you all thought of it.

The chatter around this game is super positive. "Bloodborne with samurai" is the phrase being bandied about and it's pretty accurate.

My only concern, an hour in, is just how similar to Bloodborne/Souls Nioh is. It seems extremely derivative. I'm totally fine with a game like Nioh filling a Souls-sized gap in my 2017, but I also like my video games to be innovative and interesting.

Also, there are elements of From Software games that are difficult to imitate — the depth of the lore, the atmosphere, the authenticity of the dialogue, the world building. Nioh doesn't quite seem to have that.

But it does have the core pacing, and some pretty damn good combat. I suspect I'll keep playing, but I'm not buying into the hype just yet.


    It's awesome. Once you get into the actual game (first two levels are basically the tutorial) you'll start to see where it defines itself as more than just a souls imitator. The RPG mechanics are deeper/more complex than From Soft games, which may or may not be a good thing depending on what you want out of an action RPG. Personally I think it's great, the game itself is like a more arcade-y take on the Souls formula. Great game.

    I bloody love this game. I'm finding it as difficult to beat as soulsborne games, but way less difficult to play for a long period of time because the environment and story is actually fun. I always find the constant death and darkness in the From games to be a bit tiring, but when I get impaled by some wild-eyed, eight-foot-tall maniac in Nioh and he asks old William Adams if he's paid his dues, I just reply yes sir, the cheque is in the mail.

    Then I respawn with a bunch of cute little frog dudes that somehow dampen the frustration and remind me I'm having a hell of a good time.

    E: Just on the derivative comment, it plays similarly, but when you duel another man sized target and change up your stance to defeat their guard or exploit their offence, it feels great. I loved Bloodborne for freeing up the souls combat style a bit and I think this takes another step forward in that regard.

    Last edited 13/02/17 11:42 am

      I just dropped in to tip my ridiculous-looking archer hat on your Big Trouble in Little China reference. Two thumbs up.

    I'm up to the 4th main mission and loving it so far. It is a lot like Bloodborne, but thats a good thing IMO!

    I'm stuck on the third boss because:
    She's insanely fast and likes to paralyze.

    Other than that I'm really enjoying it.

      Put on a linen shirt and dance like you've never danced before, buddy. Also you'll be collecting anti-paralysis needles throughout the mission so you can equip them and they'll bail you out of a duffed dodge.

        I haven't actually figured out how to use those, it refuses to do anything. Is there a trick to it?

          I just had it equipped in a quick slot and when I got hit by the ranged paralysis attack, I would hit the button and have time to avoid the follow up killer blow.

      What @jbp said. If you're not averse to light armour, you can also pick up a full Archer's set in the bottom of that cavern, which will give you enough paralysis resist to take three quick hits before you succumb.

        On top of that if you fire three quick fire arrows (whatever they're called) you'll burn her ki down to nothing and get time for free heavy strikes. I didn't manage to do this when I beat the fight because I had no more arrows and had to fight noble samurai style, but it seemed extremely powerful (to the point that I got lazy and had my head removed). Don't forget to always be throwing shuriken, bombs and whatever else you have at her when you can't close distance to strike. Ninjutsu also gives you a paralysis resistance item that I used and it seemed very effective.

        e: medium armour will leave you nimble enough to evade her attacks too, I was wearing a medium bandit chest and still at low weight. I've never had much luck with heavy armour so I avoid it now.

        Last edited 13/02/17 12:05 pm

          You should have picked up a Paralysis Omamori Charm in the level (i think it's in one of the rooms just before the boss with the bats) When equipped it takes two hits to paralyse you instead of one.
          Learn to dodge her blast (listen for the yell just before it) And always block the spin move (way too hard to dodge)
          I Finished finished her off last night. Took me hours until i figured out I had the charm

          I'm in love with swords, mid-stance, and heavy armor. The mid/sword lets me block without much ki loss until I spy an advantage, and the armor lets me poise through any counter-attacks to ensure punishment is delivered. There's one sword attack which is completely OP, too - the mid-stance one that lets you 'stun' (deals moderate ki damage) the opponent with your scabbard in one hand, and quickly slash down as a follow-up with the other. I taunt opponents into ki-draining themselves on my blocks, and if they have too high regen, I simply wear it all on blocks and spend my ki on the quick little strikes from guard. No risk, all reward.

          I won't be surprised if that skill is nerfed into oblivion in an upcoming patch.

            You are playing the character I set out to build, a heavily armoured, katana samurai. I ended up having massive fun sliding past an enemy attack or guard and then hitting them with single punishing strike or loading up the quick draw attack, so I put on a purple medium chest that I found with a flowing cape, everything else light and never looked back. Any skill that includes "leap into the air" is an auto buy for me now. Showmanship all the way.

            What I am learning here is that there is such massive scope for variety in this game when you consider we both came in with the same core idea, but play in completely different ways.

          I was in heavy armour when I fought the first boss (I don't really count Derrick, as he's just a tutorial on using your ultimate move), and wondered why I couldn't dodge his spinning moves half the time :P I always make sure to stay under 30% load now so I can move - in low-stance dual swords with light armour, dodging is faster and less costly than in BBorne, which I'd previously thought was extremely fast-paced. Having said that, mid-stance dual swords is still really fast, and gets decent damage, so I normally stick with that for everything but the crawlers, and high-stance for bosses/yokai where I can get away with it.

          I can't imagine trying to use ranged weapons on her - but I'm not that accurate unless it's a stationary target, and I'd get rushed before I hit her. I found dodging her moves far easier, identifying opportunities to rush in for a couple of heavy attacks before backing out of range again to recoup ki, and staying in mid-close range to bait the melee combos and grab move. But that's a testament to the flexibility in playstyles - I've seen people in heavy armour shrug off strikes that would knock out most of my health, but at the same time, I've seen people move so fast they can kill a boss without getting hit once.

            I was in heavy until I did the ninjutsu training mission to get backstab and earned the shinobi basic gear. I put that on because it looked cool and felt like experimenting, then I was basically warping through attacks and striking like a beast from deadly angles and was like this is the shit. I feel like medium/light at 40% maintains my great speed and affords enough def for a mistake or two. I am using single in high stance primarily because you look like a total baller and when you hit someone in the back with a heavy strike, they hit the dirt.

              I keep a katana in my second slot for the set bonus it gives me, but don't use it all that much. But, yea, the mobility you get with light armour makes me feel like a wraith - slipping past enemy attacks and punishing them. Love the fact that low-stance basically is able to out-speed any other weapon, too, so you can pretty reliably react to any human attack by immediately attacking their legs :D

      In contrast to the advice from these other fine gents, I would say that if you don't want to abandon your precious, ultra-leveled heavy armor and do the fight, you should look into fighting in mid-stance and backpedalling... a LOT.

      I brute-forced my way through with a tonne of blocking and sacred water to keep that ki up. The abdomen-swing was the real killer for me, and I absolutely cheesed some of the fight with using all of my arrows on her from range. That extra few thousand damage really helped. Save your guardian spirit for when things are at their most dire.

      She's not too hard, man. You can do it!

      Honestly, she killed me on my first go, but on my second attempt I got her. Here's how:

      Check your inventory to see if you have any items (such as charms) that may be able to increase resistance to paralysis.

      I forget exactly what they're called, but you can find these usable needle items which can cure your paralysis, so if she hits you with her purple projectiles (which cause the paralysis), you can use them right away, as long as you put 'em on the appropriate item short cut.

      When she's on the ground, she's got three main attacks. She'll always run at you and either A - perform a double spin kick, B - a triple attack with her umbrella, or C - try to grab you. The grabbing is the worst one and will deal a crap load of damage, most likely killing you.

      In any case, if she runs at you, just run backwards while locking onto her, then dodge backwards as she attacks. Wait for her attack animation to end (remember the timing), move in and strike. You should be able to score three hits in, four if you're lucky, depending on your weapon and stance. Don't get greedy.

      When she's on the ground, or flying in the air, you can tell she's about to launch her purple, paralyzing projectile because she makes a loud grunt sound. Listen out for that, and start dodging. Dodge left or right.

      When she fires her needles from the air, that's tricky to dodge, so just try to hold L1 and block it instead. It's not a very strong attack, so blocking it will take a very small amount of health/ki.

      When she flies towards you, that's honestly pretty easy to dodge, so try and dodge it, then run toward her to score a few hits in.

      When she's low on health, you can finish her off using your spirit guardian's attack, followed by attacking her with your living weapon. Alternatively, if you get desperate, you can activate your living weapon whilst paralyzed and you will break free.

      If it helps, I used a spear when fighting her, using a low stance. I also wear light armor, so my dodging was quite quick.

      Last edited 13/02/17 12:52 pm

        Yep! I know her attacks, it's just the timing I haven't quite mastered yet. Will be giving it another go tonight! Thanks.

        The grab hurts like hell, but if you keep your health topped up, it shouldn't kill you. I was using full Archer armour, and got grabbed twice in my successful run. And the Spirit Guardian for finishing is something I keep forgetting about - it can give you that extra bit of damage so you don't get frustrated by dying at 5%.

          Yeah, I experienced the grab attack on my first go against her. My health wasn't quite topped up, so it killed me.

          In my second encounter with her, I was quite prepared with anti-paralysis needles, paralysis resistant charms and a different mindset.

          I hope I don't eat my own words because so far, the bosses don't seem as hard as what we found in Dark Souls. I think that might be because of Nioh's combat mechanics... it feels faster and more versatile.

            I like that I'm not stuck prodding things in the leg over and over and that the boss fights can be managed in lots of ways. It's still hard (I'm finding it slightly harder than bloodborne) but it's also more fun.

            I've yet to find a boss fight that takes more than about five minutes to beat (on a successful run, at least, and even then, it's less than that to fail :P), which is nice. Muneshige's the only exception, and that's only because he controls the pace of the fight.

            And because I'm light armour, if I get hit, I usually get hit hard, so if I'm below 60% (or 70%, depending on the boss) I'll always top off to get me out of one-shot range, just in case. Making sure to backtrack to grab all the kodamas to max out the number of free elixirs I have available, too, which helps immensely.

            I like that between the stances and ranged weapons, you've essentially got eight different options for any different encounter - two weapons with three stances each, and the ranged weapons. That gives a lot of flexibility that Souls and BBorne don't really allow.

            And never say "these bosses are really easy" :P When I did that, my next mission was a duel with Muneshige, where I used my first Himorogi fragment after an hour of nearly zero progress. Thankfully, it's optional.

      My advice is this: Don't lock onto her, run around when she's in the sky and she will always miss you. Pick a stance that has horizontal attacks and only hit her a few times.

      Im beginning to think I might have cheaped her somehow.
      All I hear is how hard she is, but I fracking steamrolled her.

      And as tends to happen in these games, the next boss is picking up the slack and smacking me around like nobodies business.

      Use the Archer gear you find in the level.

    I've only played one of the demos so bear with me please:

    The 'hook' here is that once I am struck, and I block, I have to time a button press to counter, is that right?

    I love the Souls games. Bloodborne, while almost perfect, was known for that situation where you time a button press just before the enemy strikes, and you can perform the strong attack.

    I am not saying I disliked that aspect of Bloodborne, it just took time to master.

    I don't think I want to spend time in a Souls-like to master the defining mechanic that makes it different to a Souls-like, just so I can just play a Souls-like.

    Am I being unreasonable here? The demo may have been superseded, and that aspect of the thrust-parry combat was perhaps improved.

    Another thing - the high/low/normal stance stuff, that just didn't sit right with me. Does it make the game or break it?

    I'm not sure I want Dark Souls: The Genre, but I suppose that's what we are getting.

      Once you become mindful of the stances it's a great feature, particularly in a duel. It also means your weapons become a little more versatile against different enemies. I find the sword useful as stances will vary the range, frequency and power o your attacks as well as mitigating enemy guard.

      The tap R1 timing takes some getting used to, but it makes for a neat addition when fighting demons as it will eliminate their stamina (ki) draining pools of crap and regen your stamina.

      You don't actually have to time the blocks 'just right', btw. And it's not after you're struck, it's just before you're struck, to do additional stamina damage to the attacker.

      There's a secondary 'hook' where you can give yourself little bursts of stamina-regeneration after attacking or dodging or doing anything else that expends stamina. You do what's called a 'ki pulse' so long as you do the action within a window of attacking/dodging. Not only does it give you some of your stamina (ki) back, it's also used to negate the pools of stamina-sapping icky that the demons (yokai) routinely drop on the ground to buff themselves and debuff you.

      The stances are about how you want to play, really. Low stance gives you faster, less-damaging attack combos that run longer, and reduces the ki (stamina) cost of dodging. Mid reduces the cost of blocking (and is my preferred stance - blocking does not allow damage to slip through the way it does in 'soulsborne, so it's effectively the same as using a shield), and has heavier attacks than low, without over-reaching. High is the glass-cannon stance with slow but insanely powerful hits and not boosts to block or dodge.

      There are skills which give you bonuses for switching between stances, and it allows you to do things like wear a flurry of blows in blocking mid stance, then switch to high to punish the opponent who now only has half their stamina, but that's too finicky for me to invest in. I'm a simple man. I like the skill which lets me block extra, and launch one of two attacks from the guarding position - one which is a high-risk stamina drain that opens the opponent up for a punishing parry, the other being a quick stun-slash that costs very little and chips away at an opponent who's making you block too much.

        I use high stance a lot because I like the way it looks lol.

        Low-stance dual swords (can't really speak for other weapons, but I assume it's probably similar) is great for the crawling enemies - all other attacks except high-stance heavy attack will just fly over their heads, but low-stance I just mash square and their health just melts.

          The only enemies I haven't been able to hit are the tiny (if you call dog-sized 'tiny') spiders. Then I found out I can one-shot them with the ki-blast mid-stance sword skill.

            Haven't come across them yet, but I think I'll see them in the next mission, if the description's accurate - think I saw mention of spiders. Another job for low-stance square-spam :P

            Low katana uses a speedy upward sweep that you can sustain for ages and works well against crawling stuff.

      The stances make the game for me, they are fair representation of three real stances in the Japanese sword arts.

      Chudan (Mid) is standard position, providing the most versatility in defence and attack.
      Judan (High) is a position that favours heavy strikes and smashing through defence.
      Waki (Low) is about quick movements and footwork.

      The parrying is amazing, technique vs technique as it should be

      I agree that the Souls feeling tends to over power the unique qualities of the game. Sometimes I wonder why they chose to follow the Souks series so closely when they could've retained all the mechanics of those games with a different delivery.

      Loving it though

    I think I am about half way through the game based on the pacing, and am really enjoying it.

    I love From Software's souls games to death but am stoked to finally see someone else have a go at the format and bring a bit of freshness to it. (I don't count Lords of the Fallen because they missed all the important aspects)

    For the most part the levels are great, however the mission element of it does leave a little to be desired compared to Dark Souls 1, 3 and Bloodbourne's massive connected worlds.

    However I am loving the combat and find it much faster than the souls games. I also think there is a much higher skill cap with the addition of stances combos and enemy stamina. I have been finding myself playing much more aggressively/recklessly because I feel I can pull off a ballsy combo and I actually change up my stratergy/stance a lot more depending on the enemy than I do in the souls games.

    I find for the most part in the souls games my general attack pattern is the same for everything I attack.

    With the combat being more responsive and involved I am finding it a little bit easier (except for a couple of particular boss fights) than the souls games due to when I get things right I can move through things much faster.

    Really like the addition of the replayability side of it too with the twilight missions.

    Overall really enjoying it and glad to see someone else make a good souls game.

    Comparing Souls to Nioh is like comparing them both to Onimusha ;-)


      Everyone keeps bringing up BloodBorne, and I feel aspects of it in the combat for sure, but Nioh takes me back to the early days of the Japanese hack-and-slash games with their flow and position based combat.
      (Like Onimusha, Tenchu, Soul/Way/Sword of the Samurai)

    I've just hit the third region, and while I can see a lot of the similarities to BBorne and the Souls series, the amount of loot management, weapon and gear management, and resupplying you need to do between missions is very much Diablo. Also, the side-missions where you kill a mini-boss, or your goal is to collect a specific item at the end of the level, or to fight through an unspecified number of waves of enemies to finish the mission... very much Diablo, and not FromSoft's style.

    Loving the game thus far, but there are a few bugbears that bring ti down a notch or two - the aforementioned "fight through x waves of enemies missions" are frustrating and tedious. The requirement of having to use a specific consumable to leave a mission is freaking stupid, especially when the level requirements as stated are barely representative of the difficulty of the mission. And lastly, fuck Tachibana Muneshige and his random-ass hyper armour and infinite evasions that don't require stamina. :P

    Other than that, freaking love the nods to the Souls series - crystal lizards, mimics, hidden doorways... all present with a unique Japanese Mythological twist. Love the flexibility of the combat - the different stances for different enemy types/variants thereof, the ki-pulses to recover stamina letting you stay on the offensive a bit longer, the yokai realms mechanic and using perfect ki-pulses to clear them if need be, the power of ranged weapons, the level design that makes exploration rewarding, the boss battles... Loving it.

      Muneshige doesn't do very much ki damage if you block in mid stance, and will utterly exhaust himself very quickly using his ultra-combo-slash to no-effect on your block, leaving him open to a satisfying grapple. Back away, drop block until he lunges into combos again to let your ki regen, and repeat.

        As a light-armour dual-swords user, 3/4 of that 6-7 slash combo staggers me, as does that sweeping slash. I'm better off dodging through him half the time, or backpedalling from the multi-slash combo and countering with my weeb-rush (officially termed "random slash") if he's low on stamina. I figured out I can get behind him when he does his buff to avoid the sweeping slash if I'm close enough (which will kill me outright from full health if I don't block, and will stagger me if I do), but it has two variants, one of which has unpredictable range, so backpedalling's pointless - that's the move I need to learn to avoid, cos that (or the followup grapple/stab if I try to block it) is what's killing me 90% of the time (Other 10% being forgetting his puppy gets two moves in the second half :P)

        I've had his stamina flashing red, and taken a swing at him to stun within a second of him "exhausting himself" - he just dodges three times when he shouldn't have the stamina to do so, or just tanks the damage as he does a sweeping slash that takes most of my health. Huh. might give him a go in low-stance - might be able to strike once to break his guard before he can dodge, which should be enough to stagger him, and have time to dodge behind him if he prepares the hyper-armour slash and hit him from behind... Just keenly aware of wasting Himorogi fragments on levels I'm not sure I can beat yet.

          I needed to resort to cheesing the rock. Yes I'm ashamed... but live or be killed. I choose to live. :P (Although my deaths were far too numerous to count).

            Not "cheesing" - it's called using the terrain to your advantage. Sun Tsu would approve :P

        @os42 - I honestly found Muneshige to be the easiest boss in the game I've encountered so far. At first he was intimidating, but once I figured him out, he was easy.

        I wear light armor, specializing in spears and being secondary in dual swords. For this fight, I used my spear and used a medium stance.

        I found the best tactic for me was to run towards him and bait him to attack, when he does, you can dash forward (just past his left/right side) and end up attacking him from behind.

        I also "cheesed" the fight a bit and used the pillars in the room, so when he charged his sword and went to attack, he'd always fail because I was behind the pillar. This attack would always drain his ki dramatically.

        When he was low on ki, I would run up to him and attack him. He'd always block, which is exactly what I want, because it would always result in him becoming "exhausted" and I would attack with a critical strike.

        When he rolls and uses his bow to fire arrows, I found that too hard to dodge, so I would just block them. Just hold L1 and walk either left/right, you might dodge the arrows in the small gaps (since he fires three arrows like an arc) but if you block it, you'll be right anyway.

        Once his health is low enough, I would use my spirit guardian to attack him, followed by finishing him off with my living weapon.

        He'll start using new, and I'm assuming lethal attacks when he's nearly dead, involving a glowing hand and trying to grab you, as well as a glowing sword. Despite these new additions, keep to the same tactics. Even so, you can smash him to death with your living weapon during this stage.

        He was a lot of fun to fight but for me, he was the easiest boss I've encountered.

        Last edited 13/02/17 1:05 pm

          Wait... "pillars in the room"?

          The fight with Edward Kelley pretending to be Tachibana (after Nue) is a cakewalk - he was the only boss thus far I had no difficulties whatsoever with - easy to avoid, easy to stagger, easy to punish - and was a welcome and fun fight after Nue's lightning-spam/yokai-realm bollocks. The optional invitation to duel mission you get after that, where you fight the real Tachibana Muneshige in a field is a nightmare by comparison. He has way more health, is way more aggressive, hits way harder, and has a couple of uninterruptible attacks.

            Haha! Shit, son. I totally got confused and lost my mind, then. Never mind, I stand completely corrected and realized I haven't even done the boss fight you're talking about, then.

            Expect me to return to this post with raging comments. :P

              I look forward to it! >:D

                So I found this boss that everyone was talking about and that I had mistaken... took me forty five minutes of raging.

                The first time I fought him I nearly killed him, but failed because when I went to activate my spirit guardian to finish him off, it didn't work (I don't think the gauge was fill, or even filling up for that matter) and I did a stupid strong attack, which left me open and he killed me.

                The next forty odd minutes were excruciatingly painful. This was indeed the hardest boss I've encountered so far.

                In the end I did get him... I noticed the fight has three phases. The first phase is pretty easy. When he moves towards you, all you do is move towards him, dodge/dash past him when he attacks, then counter attack from behind. If you watch his ki, his ki will eventually run out, allowing you to charge in, attack and due to his blocking, will lead him to a state of exhaustion and allow you to attack with a critical strike. When he fires his spirit guardian (which slows you down and can paralyze you), you'll need to time your left/right dodging.

                The second phase is when he starts using lightning on his own sword and starts to attack more aggressively. Here, I found attacking him after he attacks works, but you need to be cautious and slow about it, one strike, really chip away at his health. You can also continue to try and perform critical/killing strikes as his ki drops.

                The third phase is when he starts to attack even more aggressively, and his damn spirit guardian can attack three times in a row. Here's where I totally cheesed the fight... that rock in the corner of the field, you can run around it and he'll chase you. You can use it for cover to hide from his arrows, his spirit guardian and use it to distance yourself and nullify his attacks. From here, I had to play extremely patiently, bugger all health remaining and no elixers, chipping away at his health. Eventually, I got the bastard.

                I normally specialize in spears, but I put the spear away and started using a new sword I got, in medium stance. Ended up doing more damage while having quicker speed.

                Honestly though, this fight felt very "cheap". He's got unblockable attacks, uninterruptable attacks and some of his strikes will even track you, so if you dodge some of the attacks, they'll follow and hit you anyway.

                  Funnily enough, I went back and fought him last night. An extra 15 levels, some fire talismans and low stance's maneuverability got me through without issue - the extra defense gave me the ability to screw up occasionally without getting gibbed by his slash or visceral, and low stance's fast attack speed meant I could stop attacking when he hyper armoured before his big slash, and get behind him to avoid it.

                  Still don't think he doesn't cheat with uninterruptible attacks and infinite dodges, but he was far more manageable.

                  @os42 - I fought him when I was level 39 (the level recommendation claims level 27) and had loads of trouble. What level are you, or were you when you fought him again just recently?

                  Oh yeah, I agree, I reckon he cheats with his uninterruptible/unblockable attacks and his seemingly unlimited dodging.

                  Speaking of the dodging... it frustrated me because his ki would be flashing red, I would charge in to attack and to try and exhaust/stun him, but he dodged every single strike and even regenerated his ki while doing so. Wtf?

    the first hour of Nioh, even playing the beta/alphas is a lot like Souls games. Once the levelling, spending skill points, using stances, badass spirit attack mode and the crazy Japanese story starts happening that's when Nioh gets its own voice.

    It's definitely going to be a game of the year contender for me. I'm having a lot of fun!

    I loved the "last chance" demo, I'll definitely pick up the game when my pile of shame is a little slimmer. :)

    Game is fantastic, combat is satisfying and the diablo-loot system is great for re-doing bosses because of the special drops!

    The mission: "Invitation from the warrior of the west" where you fight Tachibana Muneshige had me in tears. Even among dark souls games, i have never had a boss that hit as hard and as fast as this one does.

    I can't tell how many pots i lost on this boss and how many bombs were thrown. Had to resort to skirting a little rock off on the left and even then I would die like a dog multiple times when i get him down to 5%.

    Love it.

    PS. Just read Os42's post: yep totally agree. "F*k Tachibana".

    Last edited 13/02/17 12:55 pm

      Beat him after a couple of false starts in mid-stance. All I needed was low-stance, 15 more levels and a bunch of fire talismans, apparently. :P Definitely more Diablo than Souls when it comes to power creep.

    I'm really digging this game. I love the "Soulsborne" games, having played Dark Souls, Dark Souls II, Bloodborne and Dark Souls III. I've also played Salt & Sanctuary, which is definitely inspired by the Souls games, too.

    Even if it is a Souls rip off, Nioh is a lot of fun to play. I love how fast it is and how aggressive you can be. It reminds me of games like Devil May Cry, mixed with Dark Souls.

    If you like those sort of games, I highly recommend it. If you don't like these kinda games though, you can probably skip it.

    Was very interested in this game until I heard the "It's like a Souls game/Bloodborne" comments.

    Could not be less interested now.

    Seriously.......what's with all this "Lets find a niche genre and flog it to death" crap at the moment in gaming?

      I was not aware that difficult action rpg was a niche genre.

      In the particular case of the souls/borne 'genre', possibly because there are so few titles in it and it's such a great genre?

      Could not be less interested now.

      Your loss. It's a lot of fun and if the difficulty puts you off - you can always co-op the hard bits.

        If it's the style, Nier Automata is out soon, the demo owned and I'll be playing that for my platinum action fix. There's enough great action gaming for everyone already this year!

    I like that it's not exactly like a Souls game.

    I-frames don't exist on the dash which makes it all about positioning yourself to the side or back of an enemy after they attack to allow maximum punishment.

    The Parry isn't super useful but still fun to show off.

    I love having all these sweet buffs almost right away. Also enjoy the diversity in build potential. So much fun killing ninjutsu users.

    I find myself wasting time passing on abilities to weapons and upgrading familiarity levels in weapon classes that I don't even use. I'm a spear MASTER, I pine for Halberd.

    Purifying Yokai realms is really fun, it adds another layer to boss fights which helps drive home the whole 1-2 hits and dash away rule.

    Wish I could fight my AI so I knew what my threat rating is.

    I have a pet dragon that I can throw at people. I mean come on.

    Can't wait to finish so I can do low level runs :)

      I've seen someone dodge forward through Hinno-enma's ranged blasts to punish it immediately, and you can dash through Muneshige during his iaidou slash, so I'd lean more towards I-frames exist but are possibly a bit more limited than they are in Fromsoft games.

    I mean on the single dash, if you push dash twice it has i-frames... definitely more limited but fun to try a similar system.

    Fantastic game. I find the duels with the big name humans are the most fun fights. I notice in the original post a comment about not having deep lore, this is entirely false. If anything it has the deepest lore you could ever ask for. It has taken the Assassin's Creed route and used real people and told an alternative history using real Japanese folklore.

    I knew I would enjoy this game but I never could of predicted I'd enjoy it this much! Brings me back to Onimusha games except the combat and controls are far superior.

    Note: I'm only up to the third mission but have seen streams of various other parts of the game.

    At first I thought Nioh was riffing mostly off Bloodborne for the combat and riffing off Diablo for the loot and stats system. When I played through it a bit more though , I realised that the game is a Diablo-style loot crawler that attempts to add some Souls-style mechanics into the mix. Namely the "Everything can kill you in a few hits" and "Collect resource and cash it in somewhere" design paradigms.

    The end result is a game that's leaving me disappointed mainly because the combat system is simplistic and such a wasted opportunity. I don't know if I'm not "playing it right", but all combat seems to amount to is mashing attack for weak enemies and doing less mashing and more waiting and dodging for tougher enemies and bosses. More or less the same tactics I'd be using in Diablo III.

    For a game about samurai, ninja, oni, yokai and spirit animals I'd have thought there'd be more frenetic combat, wall-running, jumping, climbing, hanging, sneaking, distracting, parrying, countering, and single combats. The stance system seemed promising but I'm hard pressed to find a use for it yet and most people I've watched don't use it that often either.

    Overall Nioh isn't a bad game. If you're after a less clicky and more direct and challenging Diablo game then you'll have some fun with it. If you played Furi last year and thought that it would be awesome as a samurai action game then don't go into Nioh thinking you'll find it. At least we have Nier: Automata coming out soon.

    Last edited 14/02/17 2:56 am

      I expected Team Ninja to make Ninja Gaiden, but I also expect samurai to be pensive and strategic with grounded movement so I feel like the game has delivered what I wanted from the samurai side, but Team Ninja fans might be thrown (fairly so).

    I haven't played much but I like it so far. The controls feel tighter and more responsive than the Souls games and it's not that constantly dreary, maudlin setting which kind of got old.

    That said I'm very bad at these sorts of games - the furthest I ever got in any of them was Dark Souls, and I'm too crap at games to get past Ornstein and Smough. Not sure if I'll make it too far into Nioh either. I'd like to, but it's come out in a pretty busy period, with both Horizon: Zero Dawn and Breath of the Wild the week after next, Nier the following week and Mass Effect two weeks after, and Persona 5 looming in the distance just after that as well.

    @cr33g The level recommendations are terrible - better to use the "difficulty" indicator - the five swords under the mission name. When I first fought him he was four swords, iirc, and when I went back and beat him he was one, I think.

    I was around 35 when I fought him initially, and there was no room for error - any one of his combos would flat out eliminate my ki if I blocked, and kill me outright if I didn't dodge correctly. Came back at 50 (although using a 34 weapon) and got him first try on low-stance (after two failed attempts in mid-stance). The speed of low-stance's attacks meant I could react (ie. not get locked into an attack animation) if he went from *glowing red stamina* to *uninterruptible slash* (imo, he shouldn't be able to do that with no stamina), and could get behind him before he slashed; and if he rolled, low-stance's light ki cost meant I could spam light attacks and force him into blocking as soon as he came out of the last roll, then I could back off to recover ki while he was on the defensive.

    The difference in levels, gearing and the addition of fire talismans basically doubled my damage compared to my initial encounter, and he couldn't one-shot me from full health with his slash or half a combo anymore, which was the biggest factor imo - I had that margin for error; and because I already knew his tells, he was... not "easy" per se, but far less frustrating.

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