In Kwaidan: Azuma Manor Story, we’re taking a journey to Japan. It’s time to begin your coaching as a Hososhi, or demon fighter. Your kind will not be all that socially fashionable, however they positive do come working when monsters assault.
In true Scooby Doo trend, there appears to be some kind of monster terrorizing the manor, and it’s as much as you to go kind issues out. In contrast to with the venerable Dane, the monsters aren’t lighthouse keepers in masks (really, the hero/Hososhi is the one within the masks). One of many massive baddies simply turned your trainer right into a frog. It makes your day look not so dangerous, eh?
The premise of Kwaidan includes the basic hero-coming-of-age stuff, so we’re off to begin. The setting is rural Japan within the Nineteen Thirties, so the surroundings is attention-grabbing. You get to make use of three weapons: a kind of quick spear or actually lengthy dealt with quick sword, a magic grenade, and a mirror. So, we’ve got two uncommon weapons and one cool blade weapon; OK, not dangerous. You’re a 19-year-old woman named Haruka who’s beginning coaching below your sensei, Shiro.
Sadly, the general expertise will not be that nice. What begins with a fantastic premise, attention-grabbing interval visuals, and a basic horror/journey sport set-up ends with some actually disappointing sport mechanics, less-than-polished graphics, and audio bordering on annoying.
As I went by means of the tutorial for Kwaidan: Azuma Manor Story, I discovered how awkward the sport controls will be. While you begin a brand new sport, you may have the choice of utilizing the “Origin” mode or “Trendy” mode for controls. I attempted the origin controls, and they’re actually unwieldy. I’d advise not even bothering with them on the Swap. The trendy controls are a bit extra acquainted for this gen’s players, however they’re nonetheless fairly dangerous.
I’ll make observe of some oddities, beginning with weapon choice. I discussed three weapons earlier, however the hidden gem (as a lot a refined piece of concrete is a “gem”) is that every weapon is just good for one vary of assault. Oh, no—not melee vs, distance, nothing so regular. Reasonably, the “grenade” is used in opposition to enemies from floor degree to about knee excessive, the blade weapon is used in opposition to enemies from knee excessive to shoulder peak, and the mirror is used in opposition to enemies from shoulder peak and up.
Not solely is there an odd peak requirement in your weapons, you additionally want to make use of the Y button to toggle between weapons. In case you are undecided about your choice or get a bit twitchy with the Y button, it may possibly finish badly for you briefly order. If the weapons had been merely assigned to X for prime, Y for mid, and B for low assault, it will have been a lot better. Because it stands, we’re left with a confounding weapon system.
One other inconvenience of play is merchandise choice. While you stroll as much as one thing it’s essential choose up, it’s essential use the suitable Pleasure-Con to maneuver a cursor over the thing and, when the cursor modifications from an arrow to a hand, use the Proper button to pick out and choose up the thing. As an apart, this little nugget o’ enjoyable is why it’s a must to use the X button to recenter the digital camera angle as you stroll round (one other annoyance, to make sure). So as to add insult to harm, if the cursor strikes too quick for you, you possibly can sluggish it down by urgent the R button. Utilizing this and the suitable Pleasure-Con to do fantastic focusing on is a bit on the awkward aspect; too dangerous you possibly can’t use the contact display screen for this job (you possibly can’t use the contact display screen to do something, by the best way).
To attempt to get used to all of the odd mechanics, I’d suggest going by means of the tutorial. That is how the sport will begin each time you die and have to begin over (earlier than a greater save level). For those who click on on SKIP originally of the tutorial, you possibly can soar to the primary battle with the snake demon and get going with the story. When you begin the tutorial, you possibly can’t decide out, skip forward, or in another method hurry issues alongside. With the torpid tempo of character motion, this could take a couple of minutes. To make your character run, you need to use the A button with the Pleasure-Con, however it’s extra like a sluggish jogging tempo.
Throughout fight, you really get a command to parry an assault. Not solely do you keep away from harm, you additionally regain somewhat “aura” (suppose mana). To parry, use the ZL button. Coincidentally (and oddly sufficient) this is similar button that you would be able to maintain right down to stroll backward.
If all of the unusual motion and assault instructions depart you somewhat befuddled, you aren’t alone. The sport controls may use a serious overhaul to be extra person pleasant.
Different points of the sport may additionally appear a bit dated or outmoded, however I didn’t actually thoughts. The principle motion takes place on a 3:4 ratio window with a sidebar in your stock of things. To fill the remaining area on the left and proper sides of the display screen, the sport has what seems just like the sq. holes utilized in movement image movie. That is really an attention-grabbing contact and a pleasant level of distinction.
The visuals aren’t repelling, however they might use somewhat higher end. The general look is much like console video games from about 15 to twenty years in the past—not dangerous, however clearly clunky. What’s worse is the audio observe. There is no such thing as a actual soundtrack, and there are minimal background noises and sound results. The ambient results are monotonous, and are greatest skilled on very low quantity.
I don’t get pleasure from being such a downer on a sport, however I had excessive hopes based mostly on the theme and story. That I used to be let down by the gameplay is a bummer. Kwaidan may have been so a lot better with somewhat management rearranging and a modicum of additional effort on the audio. This sport is purposeful however irritating. If it will get reworked to deliver it extra according to the capabilities of the Swap, I’d be comfortable to provide it one other strive.