I finished NMH III on Carolina Reaper Difficulty. The hardest mode. Not too bad, as I only died about 4 times total. I highly recommend you do this mode on a NG+ run at max stats. I do change my mind about FU as the next-to-last final boss. Once you know how his patterns work and the key is to time your death glove skill after he finished an attack or lets his shield down, FU becomes way more fun. His second form, I still don't like, but you can perfect dodge his attacks and just wail on him. In terms of fighting a souped up, muscle bound boss, he's definitely the better version of Jasper Batt Jr. in that regard.
I finally got around to purchasing this, now that it's on sale. OC: Origin is a remake of the first two Onechanbara games and combined in to a single story. So the first half, you're playing OC1, and the second half, you're playing OC2.
This series is the story of Aya and Saki: two sisters that are from a clan of zombie hunters. They suffer from a blood curse called the Baneful blood that is known to drive users insane, if used too much or too long. The first game is the siblings being at odds with each other, and second game is them teaming up.
This remake blows the original games, and most of the later sequels out of the park. While you start off with just Aya with one weapon, she gets dual swords halfway into the first game. And of course, Saki becomes playable after beating her the first time around. The mechanics uses elements that worked from the previous games, and the Z series. The emphasis on using a dodge button has always been a series staple, and the ability to do air combos is taken straight Z & Z-II. New to the series is the Parry Button. Pressing the CRCL Button allows you to parry a zombies or bosses attack with the right timing a la Royal Guard. Doing a perfect parry automatically fills an enemy's stun bar. Allowing you to either wail on them, or perform a cool strike (press SQR+TRI). You can actually parry multiple foes, if they're grouped together to the monster you parried. You have a standard attack for SQR, and Strong attack for TRI. The TRI acts as a way to stun enemies as this is new for the series. When an enemy is stunned you'll see stars floating above their heads. Locking on shows meter how much time they have left until they recover.
Another mechanic taken from the Z series (Z-II) is the Xtatic mode. It's basically the game's version of Devil Trigger. After entering Berserk mode (where you do more damage, but can't turn it off), there is another state you can enter where you double the damage, but lose health fast, if you're not constantly hitting enemies. In Z-II you could manually activate it whenever you wanted as long it was filled up at max. There is the Ecstasy Bar where filling it up is done by dodging and acts as a Muso gauge of sorts. The difference being, it drains over time, so it's best to use it on a group of enemies or boss to deal maximum damage.
Each character levels up with EXP, and reaching higher levels unlocks knew moves, and a point system. The points can be distributed to either Health, Attack, or Defense. I usually for Attack power. Aya and Saki both play differently. Aya is faster and can wield two swords. Saki is slower, but her sword has longer range, and she can grab stunned enemies performing wrestling moves. Her wrestling moves have an area of effect that can hurt or stun other monsters. Saki also gets gauntlets where she uses her fists.
This is solid good action game. The dubbing is good too, but the lip syncing is off and they never bothered to update it, nor fix it. The cel-shading looks great and gives it the anime/manga inspired tone. The older games while over-the-top, all have more realistic designs and character models. I love anime look the best as it makes the game stand out the most from the entire franchise. I do recommend getting this game, but at heavy discount where it slashes it in half. The sale does not end until October 7th. The Deluxe Edition is on sale, sliced at 40% off of a price that is $75 + tax. The standard version is still at $60 for some odd reason. Origin is no DMC, but deserves to be in the pantheon of Stylish Action games.
So I finished the campaign for Oneechanbara Origin. A total of 25 missions. Pretty good, but a lot of the levels are not that interesting or barren. Not much memorable other than you'll be in the sewers at the end of each half. The only difference is the second time, it's filled with blood and has a more cerebral look. Boss fights are good for the most part, but fighting towering enemies are not that fun. The human sized opponents are the highlights. I noticed sometimes parrying does not work, even when the animation plays. It does not happen that often, but it is annoying when you did a perfect parry and did not count for some reason. I found dodging more useful a majority of the time and more fun.
Also, this game has one of the BEST! VILLAIN DEATHS! EVER! You're sorta ally, Rei, kills the big bad, Eva for you after beating the latter. Rei comes out of nowhere, drives her hand through Eva's chest, rips out the biatch's heart, tosses her, and shoots her in the head while flying in the air, and drops dead in to a pool of water. That head shot just added extra insult to injury. I sh#t you not!
I decided to do a few rounds of Onechanbara Z2: Chaos after finishing Oneechanbara Origin for comparison. While the remake is good overall, the game is not worth the asking price unless it's on sale. Z2 is still the better game, because of more content, more characters, better variety in environments, better music, enemy variety, and overall content. There was still DLC, but it's mainly costumes, and the game already allows the player to unlock in game costumes by progressing or completing quests/achievements. Where the game falters is that while the game has many bosses, most of them range between okay and decent. With a couple of good ones sprinkled here and there. And obviously, it's a budget title and some weird glitches, but the same can be said for the recent installment.
Where Origin prevails is it's defensive and dodge mechanics. Enemies are more active and aggressive, so dodging is made trickier (mainly for Saki. Aya has the best dodge out of all the ladies and you can practically spam it 95% of the time.) and the you have a parry button with tight timing. The parry is even on the CRCLE button a la DMC3's Royal Guard. What's cool is that you can dodge cancel and parry cancel out of attacks. An expert player can just wreck enemies and bosses with enough practice. Not only that, but you can still dodge in the air and can parry in the air too. You don't even have to buy skills for it like in DMC or Bayonetta. Perfecting dodging rewards and fills your Xtasy gauge. A special attack meter that does devastating damage and high stuns enemies.
While the boss variety in Origin is shorter, they are way more fun to fight with the new mechanics. Specially the human sized bosses, though I won't lite and say the zombie bear is my favorite non-humanoid boss in the game. I've heard some people complain the that the move list too short, and while there is some truth to that, the move list is not that short. Yes, it's shorter than Z2, but that's only because that game had so much. You have light and heavy attacks, a sub-weapon button [CRCLE] (Saki gets a charged parry attack instead.), and a different type of dodge dedicated to each duo of sisters. Origin did streamline certain moves to go with the new mechanics. Your strong attacks doubles as a stun and sub-weapon attack for Aya and Rei depending on the button presses. Hence why the sorta shorter move list. Chase is also gone gone too. It was a mechanic in the last game you could dash after a enemy, if you were locked on to it. This makes sense as it's a prequel and they're not a full power yet. So the characters get a good sized move list overall.
The other problem with Origin is that it could have used one more playable character. I find it odd that Eva, the final boss, is not playable. She has a full move list, and is a unlockable character in the original version of 2. A reminder that Origin is a remake of the first two games. The environments are lacking too, and are not that creative. They did not go further enough with it. It's a remake, doing something different with your levels. Don't give me graveyard, empty hospital, sewers, empty city, empty mall, and sewers with blood and wall meat instead. They could have done so much better in making new levels.
So, I managed to rush through "Metroid: Dread" before getting spoiled on anything...not like I really needed to as thinking about it Metroid has never been super plot heavy but whatever.
Anyways, I can see why people are praising it so highly as one of if not the best game in the franchise. It pretty much perfected the 2D formula whilst only carrying over one thing from "Other:M" that being the cool boss finisher interactive cutscene thingy. It's nice that we're finally moving forward past "Fusion" in the timeline after it being this wall for so long. Speaking of Fusion, one of my only complaints about Dread would be that it's a shame they didn't have the Samus soliloquies every time you move to a new area from Fusion, it would have made the emotional plot points hit a bit harder if we could get inside Samus' head more than just the occasional sad or angry close up of her face. The other issue being the final boss was a bit tedious - with four and a half phases it felt like something out of Final Fantasy rather than Metroid.
Regardless, I really enjoyed it and am glad to see that it's selling real well. Hopefully this will revive the franchise proper and Prime 4 will come out before the world ends.