Hello readers! Andrew here again, reporting on the second day of experiences on the show at Tokyo Game Show 2022.
This time I took a look at some of the most sought-after stalls and hands-on experiences the venue had to offer. Since the second working day was also open to the public from the afternoon, it took quite a bit of effort (and a plot queuing) to play these titles, but some of them were well worth the wait. While unfortunately I couldn’t cover all of the games I planned to play, here are some of the more notable games I’ve played.
Resident Evil Village VR
Hoo boy. As someone who has never used a VR headset before, I vastly underestimated how immersive the experience could be. And whether it’s the newly upgraded hardware of PSVR 2, haptic controllers, or just the atmosphere of Resident Evil VillageCapcom’s VR experience was spooky in a whole new way.
The demo’s combat system was relatively simple. You play as Ethan Winters and start with a knife strapped to your left arm. Using the handheld controls, you can grab the knife with your right hand and use it to stab, cut, or even throw it at enemies. After entering Castle Dimitrescu, you acquire a handgun that holds 10 rounds per magazine. Additionally, once you run out of bullets, you must manually eject the spent cartridge, remove another magazine, load it by hand, and then cock the barrel. If you’re not used to this process, reloading can seem endless, especially when ghouls want to chop you into pieces.
One thing I want to note is how absolutely gigantic Lady Dimitrescu looks when you’re wearing the VR headset. She already looks tall on screen, but in virtual reality she actually looks like the nine-foot-six giant that she really is.
There are, however, a few drawbacks. During my 10 minute demo, there was an occasion where my head temporarily went through Ethan’s body as he went to tend to his hook wounds. Also, the PSVR 2 headset took a while to adjust as I was wearing glasses. While not entirely unplayable, it’s something worth considering for those who can’t wear contacts or need glasses to see clearly.
Atelier Ryza 3
I gave Atelier Ryza 3 a knock in part because a lot of people were talking about how it would be a “beginner-friendly” entry in the series. By the time I got to the Koei Tecmo booth, there was a line that lasted about an hour. The 15-minute demo was on PS5 and the game’s graphics were impeccable to say the least. While the browsable map was quite large, there were no noticeable frame rate drops or graphical issues.
The exploration aspect used landmarks for quick travel and ziplines for faster traversal, which I thought was pretty handy. Landmarks also served the additional purpose of periodically providing players with free “keys”. These keys come with various bonuses when used, ranging from additional combat skills to instant rewards. In my case, I got a key that gave me a treasure trove of alchemy supplies. Alchemy also seems to be unchanged since Atelier Ryza 2each addition of an ingredient in a given recipe increasing the effect of the product, as well as unlocking other effects.
Also, I really liked the new design of Ryza’s outfit. There was another installation just outside the demo area featuring three life-size statues of Reisalin Stout, each statue inspired by his appearance in the three Ryza Workshop Games. The new addition of childhood friend Bos Brunnen also added some great camaraderie during fights, although some vocal banter got a little repetitive. To top it off, Reisalin herself even gave a special intro and farewell salute at the start and end of the demo.
Like a dragon: were!
Like a dragon: were! has an interesting story, and one that immediately grabbed me when RGG Studios first announced it. You play as Sakamoto Ryoma, a Japanese historical figure credited with pushing Edo Japan towards modernization. But technically you are also not Sakamoto Ryoma. You play as Kazuma Kiryu, who calls himself Ryoma, and joins the loyalist group Shinsengumi to avenge his father. It’s a little complicated.
Although I was initially disappointed that RGG’s take on the popular revolutionary didn’t speak in a Tosa dialect, I quickly realized that any historical accuracy was completely thrown out the window with Like a dragon: were! The game’s combat is wonderfully over-the-top, goofy, and gory. You fight through the streets of Kyoto, swinging blades, firing bullets, creating strange black holes that suck in enemies and cause tornadoes. At the end of the day, what’s not to like?
More importantly, the upcoming remake of the 2014 PS3 title is simply stunning. As the comparison screenshots showed, RGG Studios significantly improved and overhauled the cutscene graphics while managing to keep them consistent from shot to shot. If you liked the improvements made with the Kiwami remakes, with its cast of familiar characters and story beats, you’ll love Like a dragon: Were! I found no issues playing the game on the PS5, but you might want to keep an eye out for performance issues on the PS4.
Towards the end of the day, I half expected not to be able to try exoprimal. Since the demo was an hour long (probably the longest demo of TGS 2022), there was a constant line of people at the front of the booth. Fortunately, I managed to sneak in at the last moment and even got to play it longer than expected.
Suffice it to say, exoprimal was probably the highlight of my Tokyo Game Show experience. During our hour-long session, I played three game modes with a total of ten people. The first was a 5v5 mode, in which two teams competed to clear a level of dinosaurs the fastest. We also played a payload delivery mode, where two teams had to escort a “data cube” while defending against dinosaurs and ultimately the enemy team. Finally, we played a PvE mode, with all ten players battling against hordes of dinosaurs and a massive “Neo-Tyrannosaurus”.
The most satisfying part of exoprimal was class synergy. During my playtime, I mostly focused on using the tank-class Roadblock, which used a massive shield to block dinos and projectile attacks. As my team fought against our enemies, I really felt like I was protecting my squishiest teammates from chewing. On the other hand, our team healer was also working around the clock to keep me on top of my health, while our long-range allies blasted and blasted their way through groups of enemies. Plus, if ever the need arose for different team compositions or tactics, I could quickly switch classes on the fly at any point during the mission. All in all, I’m incredibly excited for exoprimal official launch in 2023.
It’s over for the second day of visiting the Tokyo Game Show 2022! While I’ll likely be taking a break from demos for the rest of the event, be sure to keep an eye out for a few more highlights and merchandise roundups in the coming days. And even though this year’s TGS was smaller than previous years, I hope I can see some of you here in the near future as well.
As always, here are your obligatory photos of Dino and Palamute.
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