Games to look out for this year

From the shadows of Dark Souls comes Nioh

Nioh uses similar gameplay mechanics and boasts a difficulty level to match that of Dark Souls.
Nioh uses similar gameplay mechanics and boasts a difficulty level to match that of Dark Souls.PHOTO: KOEI TECMO GAMES

The game, 12 years in the making, is about battling demons from Japanese folklore

NIOH

Release date: Feb 7

Platform: Sony PlayStation 4

Think Dark Souls, but set in a feudal Japan populated by demons (yokai) instead of a mediaeval fantasy world.

This is what early previewers have been saying of upcoming action RPG Nioh, which uses similar gameplay mechanics, as well as boasting a difficulty level to match the Souls games.

Creative director Fumihiko Yasuda admits the Dark Souls series has influenced his game heavily.

In Nioh, shrines replace Dark Souls' bonfires as checkpoints that let players save the game, replenish the character's health and level up. But, as in the Souls games, using the shrines respawns all the enemies in the area.

There is also a similar stamina mechanic called Ki that forces you to fight in a more controlled fashion rather than simply mashing the attack button.

Nioh features English sailor William Adams, an actual historical figure who was one of the first Westerners to reach Japan.

The game has reportedly been in development for 12 years, though current developer Team Ninja, known for the Ninja Gaiden action games, has been working on the game for only three to four years.

If Nioh is as tough to play as the Souls games, expect to die often while battling demonic foes taken from Japanese folklore.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 04, 2017, with the headline 'From the shadows of Dark Souls comes Nioh'. Print Edition | Subscribe