Special thanks goes out to the kind folks at IN.FOM and Microsoft for providing us with a Microsoft Surface Pro for some of our TGS articles. It really helped to get these out in a timely manner!

TGS 2019 is filled with tons of games that are awesome. It’s also filled with tons of games that will be hits. It’s also the home of one game that kicked my ass so bad that I’m still reeling from the beatdown I got.

That game is Ni-oh 2.

I got to try out the game for the very first time when I was invited to attend a special press hands-on event for the title. For about 20 mins, I (along with a few other journalists) were let loose in medieval Japan to combat the Yokai.

The first thing that I noticed when starting the demo is that now you can create you own character. You’re no longer forced to play as William Adams in Ni-oh 2, though it’s certainly possible to create an avatar that looks pretty much like him.

Now you can also create a female warrior, though I didn’t really fiddle around too much with the character creation.

After all, time was limited and I’d rather burn it playing the game, not by creating a character.

Playing Ni-oh 2 feels like getting back on a very, very familiar bike.

Combat is pretty much dead-on to the original in the demo, though you can now use Yokai powers to help you out. I didn’t get a chance to try it out as I was saving the meter for the boss fight.

Combat is still as frenetic and deadly as ever; the always present Ki meter slowly depleting as you attack the Yokai in your way. Get too greedy and you’ll wear yourself out, giving your foes an opening to take you down.

Turtle too much and you’ll get hurt too, as enemies are given time to wind up for their special moves. Finding a balance is key, which isn’t always easy in the demo that I tried.

Weirdly, the timing to recover Ki in the middle of fights seems different. In the original, you can recover a certain amount of Ki if you timed hitting the R1 right as the meter starts to refill. Try as I might, I couldn’t get it right for Ni-oh 2. Perhaps it was just me though.

What I do know is that you can now find an INCREDIBLY cute Yokai cat! Finding the kitty will get him to roll around after you (which is incredibly adorable!) AND also has the added benefit of filling up your Yokai meter (which can then be used to unleash your Yokai moves).

Ni-oh 2 looks to be like a bigger, grander and more ambitious version of the original, which was already bursting at its seams with content (especially if you have the DLC). It’s great that the sequel aims to live up to that and from what I’ve seen, it’s certainly on track (and may be even better than the original).

If you’re hankering for more information on Ni-oh 2, no worries, we got you covered!

We’ll be talking about the TGS presentation in a future article so stay tuned!

Sal's been in the industry since the early 2000s. He's written for a ton of gaming and tech publications including Playworks, Hardwarezone, HWM and GameAxis. Recently, Sal served as a juror for the Indie Game Awards at Taipei Game Show 2020. A geek and hardcore gamer, Sal will play everything, on any platform.