Team Ninja are back with a bang

Sony are back, and this time they’ve brought Team Ninja along along for the ride. Rise of the Ronin feels very much like a Team Ninja game. It focuses on Japanese history and is set at the end of the Edo period in the middle of the Boshin War between the anti-shogunate factions and the Tokugawa shogunate. This was a game that I certainly had my eye on, especially after I loved the likes of Ghost of Tsushima so I was itching to get my hands on it.

Right from the outset, Rise of the Ronin introduces you to the Blade Twins and gives you the chance to get into the character creation screen and gives you a lot of tools in order for you to make them look as adventurous as you like.. There was some deepness to the character creation, but don’t get overly attached to one of the twins, that’s all I’m saying. Without being spoiler heavy in the game, Rise of the Ronin chucks you in at the deep end, and spits you back out. Within the first hour, the first major shock happens. You can probably guess what it is, but hey, I’ll let you play it out, I’ve managed over 15 hours in my playthrough so far and whilst the game is huge, the good thing is that you make choices in this. Honestly, think twice, three times about what you do, because it may restrict or help you in the battlefield.

Rise of the Ronin - Game Hype

One thing about Rise of the Ronin is the huge scale of the game. It’s an open world, but you will literally find something to do in every turn. There are times where some of the things you do feel repetitive and a bit pointless, but it’s all about building your character stats up and their Veiled Edge. The Veiled Edge is your character’s main focus of attack, and will determine what weapons he can use and what abilities you will have. You do need to put some time into this as combat is very risk-reward, and also feels like a Dark Souls lite in some aspects. You need to learn your enemies moves quickly, and watch how they attack. For more powerful enemies, these will unleash powerful attacks using Ki energy, which can be parried but requires a split second execution. Dodging is probably a better bet. Don’t worry, you can change the difficulty at any time and the game even suggests this if you keep getting killed easily.

Visually, this is where the game is let down. It looks and feels like a PlayStation 4 title at times. The game does give you options on if you want to focus on ray-tracing, visuals or performance. I went with visuals but the character models and overall scale visually didn’t leave me thinking wow, which is a shame. You go to some great locations in the game, but I felt like I should be wanting more, and feel like this was a true PlayStation 5 game. Sound wise though it was great, I love the voice acting in the game, at times it really was superb. The ambient sound when you know a huge battle is about to occur is there in abundance so I have no complaints about the game in that aspect

Rise of the Ronin - Game Hype

As I move forward with Rise of the Ronin, whilst I don’t think that this will come up in GOTY considerations, we still have a great game on our hands. Team Ninja have done a great job, and you get to come some historic people in your travels, and even have them on your side later in the game. With so much to do, I genuinely will keep coming back to this. The combat is strong, and the story will keep you hooked throughout. I cannot wait to see what’s in store as is travel further into it

During my time with Rise of the Ronin, I couldn’t help but feel like this feels like a mashup between Dark Souls and Assassin’s Creed. It is huge in scale, and absolutely tonnes to offer to keep you occupied for more than just the mid-term. Some of the loot, in fact a lot of it does feel very much junkish. Raising my characters’ stats was such a focal point on how I spent most of the time with the game. Bosses were multiple time attempts just because I was learning how would they move, when would their Ki moves come? There were countless times where I would get so frustrated, so make sure you have the right load-out at your disposal, because that is key with your progress.

A big thank you to Sony for the PlayStation 5 Review Code for Rise of the Ronin.