Toukiden Kiwami (Apparently means "Legend of the Demon Slayers Extreme") is a game that wants to be Monster Hunter so bad it hurts. The game seems to have been originally on PSP and remade a few times to get to the PS4 Toukiden Kiwami I played. If you have played the monster hunter series you basicly know what to expect. For the people who don't it's a simple game where you do missions and go out hunting monsters or in this case Yokai (although the game calls them Oni what are a type of Yokai but anyway...) who you then cut up and harvest for materials/resourses that you take to the local blacksmith to make new weapons and armour so you can do the same to bigger more aggressive ones.
There is of course more diffrences to the Monster Hunter series than what to name what you are killing such as Toukiden being more story driven. While in monster hunter you are basicly told to mess around untill you can kill the big thing terrorising the village, in Toukiden there are other Slayers each with back story that is revealed as they must over come the shadows of thier past that haunt them and allow for them to become party members as you fight to protect the village.
With party members and other diffrences such as there being no weapon degredation meaning you don't need to stop and sharpen your weapons every 5 mins, the party system in single player and the fact that even though there is Slash, Thrust and Strike damage each are able to destroy all body parts it gives a feeling of not only being simpler but easier than the monster hunter series (though the few solo missions then kick your ass)
If the name didn't give it away..and the Oni/Yokai thing, Toukiden Kiwami is a Japanese made game, with strong japanese influance and culture, Stuff like purifying pools, shrine offering and other stuff I don't know enough about to explain well enough but they play an important part in the game by boosting stats, giving possitive effect and just giving items.
This covers everything even down to the weapons and smaller things so if for some reasons you dislike japanese things or influance this game really isn't for you.
Speaking of weapons they come in 9 variations. Sword, Knives, Spear, Guantlets, Chain & Sickle, bow and the three new ones for Kiwami the Club, Naginata and Rifle.
Each comes with it's own fighting style that are nicely varied enough so if you ever get bored of one the others basicly offer fresh new game play compaired to the last. Examples if such would the sword that is heavily combo focused what can be done in an almost infinate chain by using side slash (assuming the Oni won't move what it will) compaired to the Guantlets that are all about perfect timed striked. A basic 4 hit combo that will hit with crit strikes if the next hit is done with correct timing. There is more to each weapon but that works enough as an example.
Another key part of combat are Mitama, Mitama are the souls mostly of famous japanese people from history who grant you various benfits by equiping them to your weapon. Thier main feature how ever is the skills they offer. Each comes in a set "class" such as Attack, Defence, Healing, Deceit, Luck and a few others and they all grant various abilitys. Atk for example offers the Might skill that boosts attack, the leech skill that heals you based on inflicted damage and Carnage that causes all your hits to be crits for a time. As you can see very attack based skills so mixing them up with diffrent weapons can have very diffrent results.
They also come with short bios about thier history what can be quite intresting to read through.
The long and short is it's a really enjoyable game, another one I have sunk more than 100+ hours on and barely touched any new games I have gotten recently like in the sale so I can kill another few oni.
It's a simpler Monster Hunter with a more reliable online service (so you can actually play online without disconects) as well as cross play with the vita version what will hopefully carry over to the PC version that is ment to be coming to steam soon
The biggest downside however is the lack of Oni. Through the whole game there is a very small amount of unique oni with most of the actual Oni are just variations of the earlier monsters such as the fiend enemy (seen in the first monster image at the top) has a stronger version that is Blue instead of Red then another stronger version appears where the head changes becoming a minitor, they are all however faught the same way so it really just comes down to the same fight that takes longer as the later ones have so much health.
As I have been compairing it to monster hunter for most of the review it is easy to say if you like monster hunter you will probly like this. I know I do and do.
Fighting large monsters is great fun through out the whole game to the point it at times feels like the story is getting in your way. It also has an enjoyable collection aspect not so much in the materials but in the varied weapons and armours all with distinct appearances that are nice. I suppost score wise I would have to give it a 6/10. If it had more monster variation it would be a 7 and as I haven't 100%ed the game I might change this if some more pop up but if any of this has intrested you (what I doubt as I feel I have said nothing this review) you should note that the game has been out for a good while meaning the price is nice and low.
Now with all that said, I have some Oni to kill...