It’s always a massive shame, in this ever-expanding evolving industry, when a game with bunches of potential is lazily thrown out on PC as an utter mess; especially when it could have brought a whole different genre to the platform and been the game’s definitive version.
So here we are with Toukiden: Kiwami. A game hyped by many as a brilliant monster-hunter-like that would have been the first of its type on PC. Before I go on, I love the idea of this game, and once I have a PS4 I fully intend to play it properly. There are some sparks of brilliance in Touikiden: Kiwami, and that’s one of the most disappointing things about it. It’s a faithfully Japanese game, with a very distinct graphical style reflecting the mythology of the region. The creature designs are wonderful, with some beautifully gigantic monsters to slay, and frankly I can’t help but feel like the artists deserved a better platform to show their designs. Even the large variety of weapon types reflect the over-exaggerated style of combat with their massive nature; shout out to the gauntlets, which remind me of the Hulk Hands kids often run around with punching things, but which look absolutely awesome. The combat is pretty slick and satisfying, even if the bigger enemies are someone bullet-spongey.
However, despite this I can’t recommend this game on PC whatsoever, and here’s why – it’s one of the worst PC ports I’ve played in years.
My first issue is that Touikiden: Kiwami both looks and plays like it was released years ago. Definitely not in this generation, and perhaps not even in last generation. The game has also been released on Vita and PS4, and yet this version doesn’t remotely live up to the latter in terms of graphics, which feel low-quality, washed-out, muddy and blurry, with very little that you could consider eye-candy. Character models look bland and lack personality and even the HUD is low definition.
To add insult to injury, it is hard-locked to 30 frames per second. Now, before you all shout “FPS doesn’t matter,” or “It’s cinematic,” or “it’s a creative choice,” you’re wrong. As a PC gamer who spends hundreds, if not thousands on his rig and who is accustomed to having a relatively constant FPS of 40-60 in even the most demanding of games, I deserve better, and yet even with the lock it sometimes dares to fall below thirty. Just no. Higher FPS is objectively better for gaming. And what happens if we try to remove this hard lock? The whole game speeds up to follow the higher rate, doubling the speed of play and becoming absolutely unplayable. This goes beyond lazy optimisation, and falls into the territory of negligence. The fact that a PC game is locked to 30fps in this day and age in the first place is ludicrous; the fact that the physics are tied to it is just damn moronic.
The third nail in this coffin is the lack of acceptable keyboard/mouse controls. This is a PC game, and as such should be playable with the standard peripherals which most PC’s have. Whilst there are SOME keyboard controls, not only are they designed to be as unintuitive as possible, but the game doesn’t even refer to them. Instead, it insists on showing all button prompts as if you were playing with an XBOX controller. As such, the game is nigh unplayable without one.
Finally, if you do want to buy this version of the game, you will have to pay £50 for the privilege. Yep, £50, with an extra £7 worth of DLC available for your “pleasure”. No.
Despite the best of intentions from the game’s original developers, this port is so shoddy that it defies explanation. In 2015 PC gamers deserve better, and what could have been a fantastic experience just feels like a messy joke.
If you want to play Touikiden, which is a pretty fun game at its heart, I implore you to pick it up on console, but don’t touch the PC version with a barge-pole.
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.