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Muramasa: The Demon Blade

Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy GroundRPGamer Staff
edited September 2009 in Staff Review Blogs
So I've sunk a solid 4 hours into Muramasa now, and so far it's surprisingly on par with what I was expecting coming out of Run to the Sun in July. The gameplay is fast-paced and crazy, the animation is gorgeous, and the localization is awful.

The last one is what I was really worried about, especially after playing Odin Sphere and seeing what I saw in July. Odin Sphere's voice acting and dialogue were easily the highlight of a game plagued by technical problems. Muramasa seems to be the opposite. The game runs at a terrific framerate, but the dialogue is just awful. Here's a little sampling that I found particularly mind-boggling:
Quote: wrote:
"I'm a bit surprised, but it seems you've grown a bit fond of Monohime... Haven't you?!? If that is true, I want to tear her Soul apart using the mystical power of the foxes."

Now, to be perfectly fair, a few things here you sort of understand through context. Monohime's body is being possessed by the soul of a dead warrior, and he's being aided by some weird fox lady. However, it's still unclear who she is or how they know each other, but I expect it's going to be revealed as the game goes on. At this point in the game, the dead warrior Jiroku just spared the life of one of Monohime's friends at her soul's behest, which is where this line obviously came from. But it's still terribly written and definitely seems like a very weird thing to say. It makes you wonder if this is a literal translation that just doesn't work in English.

In any case, the game is still quite fun to play. The story sequences are fairly short, and are separated by lengthy stints of gameplay, so the focus is at least in the right place. I will finish this entry by saying that the controls feel a bit awkward. Using "Up" to jump just doesn't make any sense, especially when a face button on the classic/gamecube controller goes entirely unused. It seems it's a victim of the Nunchuk, which has fewer buttons to make use of. They chose to use the Z button to toggle the map instead of using the 1 or 2 buttons (which go entirely unused), and thus we end up with this control scheme.

9/8/2009 - 21:00

Just played through the first two chapters of Kisuke's storyline, and Rebo was quite right: The centipede boss fight DOES rock. Totally epic.



Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...

Comments

  • RebochanRebochan Who needs Rinoa anyway? Full Members
    edited September 2009
    Don't know if you caught my post about this game in the "What game are you playing now?" thread, but this translation was more than a little rushed (and this is why you've got a dub-free game). Among other things. On the other hand, if this is how they handled just writing a script, maybe we're better off not knowing how Ignition would have tried dubbing it.

    I got used to using the up to jump, but it took some adjusting.

    I too wonder why the foxes (or rather, the kitsune - there's a rather important difference in Japanese mythology) are helping Momohime Jinkuro. Kisuke's storyline gave the impression they're keeping the souls he collects, so possibly they're doing the same for Jinkuro.
    "One original thought is worth a thousand mindless quotings." -- Diogenes
  • Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2009
    Don't know if you caught my post about this game in the "What game are you playing now?" thread, but this translation was more than a little rushed (and this is why you've got a dub-free game). Among other things. On the other hand, if this is how they handled just writing a script, maybe we're better off not knowing how Ignition would have tried dubbing it.

    I got used to using the up to jump, but it took some adjusting.

    I too wonder why the foxes (or rather, the kitsune - there's a rather important difference in Japanese mythology) are helping Momohime Jinkuro. Kisuke's storyline gave the impression they're keeping the souls he collects, so possibly they're doing the same for Jinkuro.
    I'm well aware of the drama surrounding this title, and I've been trying to avoid talking about it. But yea, it definitely feels rushed. And I was thinking the same thing about a dub.

    I'm on Chapter 4 with Momohime and haven't really started Kisuke yet, but I'm gonna try to play them both simultaneously. We'll see how it goes, I suppose.
    Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...
  • Phillip WillisPhillip Willis Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2009
    Hmmm....I'm still on the fence about this one. Can't wait to see the full review!
    Co-Host on RPGBacktrack. Follow me on Twitter and sub to my blog if you would like!
  • AurianAurian Member Full Members
    edited September 2009
    I am in Act 2 for both characters.

    The game is surprisingly addictive. The fighting is a bit button-mashy but fun (the more strategic can select a harder difficulty at any time, however). The graphics are gorgeous and there is no slowdown at all so far, despite some battles having GINORMOUS bosses (ack - giant centipedes!) or some random encounters with 20+ monsters.

    The flaw is that the Japanese voices with english subtitles kinda bug me. I know no Japanese, so I almost would have preferred the option to turn off the voices and leaving the text. The other thing that bugs me is that the text doesn`t flow very well - maybe some translation issues? This game certainly seems less story-driven and cinematic than Odin Sphere...

    Still fun though.
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited September 2009
    The flaw is that the Japanese voices with english subtitles kinda bug me. I know no Japanese, so I almost would have preferred the option to turn off the voices and leaving the text. The other thing that bugs me is that the text doesn`t flow very well - maybe some translation issues? This game certainly seems less story-driven and cinematic than Odin Sphere...
    You can turn the Japanese voices off. I finished it so expect a review whenever omega finishes the game and his review, as we'll both likely post at the same time.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2009
    Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited September 2009
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
This discussion has been closed.