Release Date: 20th May 2016
Developer: UNKNOWN GAMES
Disclaimer: The review copy for this game was provided for free by the developer.
The message is spread throughout the three kingdoms. The ruler is dead. A new leaders must be found immediately and a grand tournament will be held to find the strongest warrior in all the land. The winner will receive the symbol of the empire the great… magic thingy thing. I’ll be honest by this point it was clear to me that the story mode was pretty much just an excuse to have lots of anime women fight each other so I’d stopped paying attention. That’s not to say there’s not story here, it’s just told through dialogue boxes in an incredibly cliché way.
Then again Koihime Enbu is a fighting game and going to a fighting game for the story is like going to McDonalds for the fruit bags. Koihime Enbu translates roughly to ‘A Princess Fight’ and as one might expect it’s about a bunch of girls fighting.
The art for this game is bad. The backgrounds are all static, blurred and rather boring images and the models are… off. I think it’s that they are 3D models that are shown to us as 2D. Regardless the models don’t look great and can some of them look ever so slightly terrifying. The animation too is very poor. In a genre that can require frame perfect manoeuvres the animation skipping, jutters and some generally shoddy animation work really isn’t what you want.
The fighting is the meat of the game. But it’s a poor cut. Most of the stuff you expect like blocking, combos and flashy special moves are there but it’s dull. After only a short amount of playing it’s easy to see that many of the moves work exactly the same way and just look different. The AI is also pretty dumb, it’s easy to cheese and it seems the only way it’s able to make up for this is by launching into huge combos every time it does connect.
Playing online is also highly unlikely. By the time of writing this game has been out a little over a week and the amount of daily players has dropped to well under 100 with the average playtime being only 2 minutes (stats taken from steam spy) so good luck finding anyone to play with.
The game looks and feels like a much older game than it is. If this was PS1 – maybe early PS2 – it might just have had a small amount of success and a small cult following. But being released in 2016 and at the release price of £30 this is a definite to skip game.