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Onimusha

Developer: Flagship | Publisher: Capcom
Players: 1 Player Game | Release Date: 03/13/01 | Genre: Action

The next generation games are continuously getting better all the time. I recently had the pleasure of getting around to playing one of PS2's first generation games--Capcom's Onimusha: Warlords. When I picked this up off the shelf in my friend's room, it was covered in dust and he had forgotten he owned it. When I asked him about it, he simply replied, " It was fun." So being in college and having nothing else to do I picked it up and began an action adventure game that is going to be hard to equal.

In Onimusha you play as Samanosuke Akechi a ninja assassin whose main objective is to free the Princess Yuki from the hand's of an evil race of monsters known as the demons. The game evolves around a castle that holds the door to hell. In a typical Resident Evil fashion, this castle will include an abundance of traps, puzzles, and other obstacles. Along the way, you can enhance your weapons by attaching elemental gems to your gauntlet, allowing you to fill your attacks with fire, thunder, or wind. Not only will this be used for attacks, but also some puzzles can only be solved with a certain gem.

To make sure that the game doesn't become tedious the developers threw in several puzzles, which are made to keep your intellect involved--which mean none of the puzzles are very difficult, but they do require some thought. Another addition within Onimusha, you switch characters to give you another vantage point. Samanosuke has a female ninja companion named Kaede who is much weaker but is much more agile. By the end as your turn playing as the female ninja, you may feel anxious and ready to return to the strong and seemingly indestructible warrior Samanosuke.

In order to get an idea of this game take the game play of Devil May Cry, cross it with the feel of Resident Evil 2, and add the puzzles and fight movements of Legacy of Kain. The story starts a little weak--similar to Devil May Cry but progressively becomes interesting. The cut scenes introduce the gamer to what a cut scene should look like. Dramatic characters great fighting action and interesting puzzles add up to make this one heck of a game. If you enjoy the action-horror genre this is a must have title.

The only problem found with Onimusha is the game length. For a first time run through of the game it only took me a total of five hours. Because it is such a short game, it can't be considered a true epic but it is definitely worth playing.

By Christopher Watts - 08/01/01
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Screenshots for Onimusha

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