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Touhou Genso Rondo Battle Royale review

On September 28, 2016 by Aaron Meehan

Touhou Genso Rondo Battle Royale, which is published by NIS America and developed by CUBETYPE, is the first Touhou game to hit western consoles, and honestly, while the combat is enjoyable nearly every other aspect of the game is dull.

What makes Touhou Genso Rondo Battle Royale interesting from a combat perspective is that it combines the Touhou franchises traditional bullet hell setup with a typical arena fighter. This means 1v1 battles filled with an almost insane amount of bullets/magic, at times the amount of attack spam on the screen can be overwhelming, but as long as you know how to dash away or block attacks, you don’t need to worry.

Combat in Battle Royale is built around managing several gauges including your sub and main attack gauges, along with your charge gauge, it is important to manage your charge gauge as filling up to three of the four bars allows you to perform a spell, which lets you rain an almost hellish amount of bullet and magic upon your enemy. Outside of managing your gauges, you can collect power-up items called power items and charge items, these items drop when you successfully counter an enemy attack, don’t worry it is a lot easier than it sounds. The bullet spam nature of the game also means that fights are relatively short, with a match lasting between 40 to 50 seconds, which means Battle Royale is great for playing in short bursts.

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Now, while I love Battle Royale’s combat, nearly every other aspect of the game is dull or uninspiring. The selections of modes, which are story, arcade, boss rush, vs. Com, vs. Human and online are all the same thing. While I don’t think many of these modes need to be discussed, I’ll talk about the story and arcade modes in detail.

In story mode, each character has their own story short, but while the game does have 11 characters to choose from, only 9 characters have stories, to get the other 2 stories you need to buy some DLC. In terms of narrative the stories are just reading some dialogue and fighting enemies, there is nothing inspiring or earth shattering about them, in fact, if I remember correctly one story was about a shrine maiden beating up the other characters because she blamed them for her shrine not receiving donations.

The arcade mode is essentially like the story mode with the story dropped and the number of rounds reduced to 1. It is a fun quickfire mode where you constantly fight one enemy after another, but the arcade mode suffers from one major issue, the game’s odd AI.

In terms of AI, it can range from incredibly easy to almost impossibly difficult. What makes this odd is that in the majority of the modes there is no difficulty slider, the closest thing to a difficulty slider can be seen in vs. computer mode, which allows you to set the difficulty of an enemy. The lack of understanding on AI difficulty can lead to a series of seemingly easy encounters suddenly leading to an almost impossible to defeat opponent, it feels as if the game independently decided to increase the level difficulty without telling the player. Before talking about graphics I want to mention the tutorial, it featured a lot of text and didn’t allow me to test out any of the moves they showed me.

In terms of graphics, Touhou Genso Rondo Battle Royale does not look like a PlayStation 4 game. Characters have a rather low poly count and the arenas you fight in are dull and have little to no eye-catching features, although this could be done on purpose as to not distract players. When it comes to audio we have some sound effects and background music, there is no voice acting as the game’s story is told through text.

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Conclusion

Touhou Genso Rondo Battle Royale combines both bullet hell and fighting mechanics to make for a fun fast fighting experience. However, the game suffers from a poor story and a lack of additional content.

Score: 6/10

Pros Cons
+ Great combat system – Forgettable story
– Lack of mode diversity
– Tutorial feels like a wave of text
Developer Publisher Genre Rating Platform Release date
CUBETYPE NIS America fighter 12+ PlayStation 4 Septmeber 2nd

*A review code was provided by the game’s publisher.*

For more information on Touhou Genso Rondo Battle Royale, visit http://nisamerica.com/games/touhou-genso-rondo/.

Author: Aaron Meehan

Hi, I’m the creator of SG Gaming Info. When I’m not working on my writing or creating content for this site’s YouTube channel, I like to relax and enjoy character driven story games.


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