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By Jonah Powell

A critique of “Bujingai: The Forsaken City”

“Bujingai” is a joined release Taito Corporation in collaboration with Red Entertainment. It was released in 2004 for the PlayStation 2 and is a perfect example of a mediocre game that needs to be played. Yes, the offensive capabilities are shallow, the movement gameplay is pointless and the level design is not great. Yet the defensive system clicks – it is unique to this game. Let’s delve into a full Bujingai: The Forsaken City review to find out why:

Combat in Bujingai

The combo system is straight out of “Dynasty Warriors.”. It has a primary attack button causing a single combo and a secondary button resulting in different special attacks based on when in the combo it gets used. Spells have the potential to spice up the game a tad. They share a single magic button and must be switched in the menu. The leveling system is another low point, mostly due to it serving only to artificially restrict the player. It has standard lock on and evade systems that a lot of 3d action games had in the PlayStation 2 era. While blocking, however, you can counter or do a special evade. Some of the enemies will also have this ability which will lead to crazed bouts. The player and enemy will repeatedly counter each other.

Bujingai Movement Review

The protagonist’s navigation skills bring back joyful memories of better games such as “Prince of Persia” or “Shinobi”. There is also wall running and branch swinging here. With such abilities at the players disposal it feels odd that the movement feels so stiff and clunky. There is also little in the game to test the player’s skills with the movement system. One thing that is difficult about all of this is trying to find plot objectives. Because the radar is useless, there is no map, and the levels are so featureless that getting lost is inevitable.

Level design

The levels are varied through taking the player through cities, a bamboo forest and much more. However, the connective tissue between these levels are weak at best. The narrative gives the player no reason why the protagonist would be at any of these locations or what he hopes to accomplish at them. And that just leaves the bosses, for whom the word unimaginative does not begin to describe. In all fairness, the final boss pits you against main antagonist, who is every bit the swordsman that the protagonist is but every other boss is just some big boring and completely forgettable monster.

Bujingai: The Forsaken City review conclusion

The game falls short in many areas – the story, the platforming, even the combat can get boring at times – but the game does come alive on the few occasions you fight an enemy that can block you. “Bujingai” delivers on giving the player the feel of being the hero in a martial arts epic, which is exactly what it sets out to do, and it does it better than most any game out there. This is definitely worth any action enthusiast’s time, but be careful and do not set your hopes to high.

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