Nioh 2 Alpha Demo Impressions

just_me

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Since I don’t want Brute to punch his monitor, or damage any other device he might use to view this thread, I’ll start with this:

I did not receive an Alpha Code either, so all my impressions are just from watching a fairly limited amount of content.
(watching most people play Nioh just infuriates me lol)

Since the Alpha is out and we have a dedicated Subforum for Nioh, I thought it might be a good idea to make a dedicated thread for this topic and not just dump everything in the General Thread.
Feel free to post your impressions, findings, opinions, and concerns about the Nioh2 Alpha Demo here.

As already mentioned I did not get the chance to play the demo (and don’t think I will at this point…), so my impressions are purely from watching others play.

I guess I’ll just list some stuff I noticed, then my opinions and some points I’d include as feedback (if I had the chance to give any)
Stuff I noticed:
  • Spirit stat is no longer a thing. However, there is a Courage stat now (no clue what it does though, might do the same as spirit)
  • The Demo features 4 weapons Katana, Spear, Odachi and the new Dual Hatchets
  • There are 2 new weapon elemental effects called Purity and Corruption… basically Light and Dark they seem to have associated Onmyo in form of Talismans etc.
  • There is also a new dmg buff mechanic for specific Yokai/Blessed weapons
  • The basic menu UI looks largely the same. Presentation is a bit cleaner with more icon usage etc.
  • Additional Guardian Spirit passives are now tied to other stats since Spirit no longer exists
  • Skill trees have been reworked in both presentation and functionality
    • Skills can now have more than 1 pre-requisite
    • Some old skills are gone, some new ones exist
    • Skills that were present in every Weapon tree (Flux etc.) and generic passives are now in their own “Samurai Skill Tree”
  • Skill point acquisition is different now. Only through locks and proficiency and no longer through associated stat increase, this includes Ninjutsu and Onmyo
  • You acquire skill points for a specific weapon and can only spend them in that tree
  • Readying Ninjutsu/Onmyo seems to work slightly different. You only have to buy the skill once and then can decide to ready a variable amount (Instead of readying e.g. Fire Talisman I and II you can just decide to ready 2 Talismans in the menu)
  • All skills only cost one skill point
  • Yokai Shift Element might be different from the GS’s Element
  • Yokai Shift allows you to UT
  • Soul Cores are a new collectible item and give you the option to use attacks from Yokai
  • Attacks with Soul Cores use their own resource bar, Soul Cores are equipped to Guardian Spirits
  • Yokai that are out of Ki now “drop” Amrita every time they are hit
  • It is also now possible to Grapple Yokai that are out of Ki
  • There are friendly Revenants now that can be summoned as AI helpers (they are pretty passive though)
  • While Co-Op options are still available, I think the normal summoning on a shrine was not?
  • AI companions will absorb Amrita
  • You will receive rewards if your AI Revenant is summoned by another player
  • Still mission-based, World map presentation is a bit different though
  • Blacksmith still there and options largely unchanged
  • Seems you can adjust your avatar at any time from the World Map menu (I think Gender was fixed though?)
  • They teased some “your hut” option, but I think everything but changing your chars appearance was locked
  • Transforms will still be a thing
  • Your chosen preset is shown in the mission (de)briefings
  • Nure-Onna (Snake ladies with the big tiddies) have a lot of health and seemingly no attackable weak spot (except headshot)
  • They made the second Boss really hard in the Alpha lol
  • Loot and gear system is still largely the same.
  • While a lot of different affixes are still present their effect seems to be lowered overall e.g. a +2% Fire Dmg affix on gear, a skill tree node for +20 health (while Nioh 1 had one for +150)
  • There are a bunch of new Accessories
  • Seems every piece of gear now has a fixed affix
  • The dmg reduction on armor has been moved from a fixed affix to a vs physical stat
  • Visual fidelity is pretty similar, some effects, lighting and especially view distance are improved though
  • Model quality is pretty high imo
Since all this is just from watching, feel free to correct me if I got anything wrong.

The Dual Hatchets have a lot of Axe throw moves and basically, present some middle ground between a melee and ranged weapon. They don’t allow you to first person aim from what I can tell though.
While it looks like they have a passive from the Dual Katana tree, I’d assume Dual Katana will still be back in the final game. Not even sure what the primary Dmg stat for Hatchets is…
I actually have no clue what the new Elemental effects do and if you can Confuse/Discord with them… couldn’t figure out the other new mechanic from watching either.

I think the changes to skill trees and skill points are a positive change overall, though the change to Onmyo/Ninjutsu might just mean that you use all your items and then run back to the shrine to replenish if you want to “farm” points. There are also different icons for learned skills… not sure if this has any deeper meaning or just represents the type of skill learned. Stuff like the skill cost and the fact that everything is already unlocked will probably change… just like last time, where the demo gave you access to way more than the beginning of the game did.

Yokai shift seems like a good idea too… obviously looks a lot cooler and avoids the last game's problem that some LW modes are a lot better than others. Though I guess they might just kick the can down the road and now the different Yokai forms are unbalanced. I’d expect at least one Yokai form for each element in the final game. Currently, the Yokai form’s element didn’t have to match the GS element, but the GS icons were placeholders atm, so that might be irrelevant. I was hoping they’d adjust this mode to still have a life bar, but we’ll see how it turns out in the end. Still seems a bit too much like a panic button… and of course… yeah for UTs :p

Soul Cores are like a mix of magic and Pokemon and I think I like this as well. Since the cores can drop multiple time and it seems even the same core can have different levels, I’d assume the final game will allow you to do more stuff with them, which may or may not be tedious…

From what I can tell hitting Yokai that are out of Ki generates Amrita to absorb and doing enough Dmg on an out of Ki Yokai will give you an opportunity to Grapple. Though combined with Yokai form it’s already a bit of a problem. If you do enough Dmg you can more or less loop bosses by running them out of Ki fast, restoring your Yokai gauge while they are out of Ki by doing even more dmg and then Grapple. Rinse, repeat…

I’m kinda happy that they stuck to the mission structure. The market is still oversaturated if open world games and they’d just fall flat on their face as they did with DW9 if they tried. If someone wants the connected Zones approach of Souls games… just play one of these, dammit!

It seems odd that the mission briefings had a static image of your chosen preset… it seems the creator is at least powerful enough to create a char that hardly resembles the chosen preset.

Smith is unchanged, but it kinda looks like they didn’t get to this point yet. E.g. the hair option is still there, even though that is something you will be able to do with the char creator. However, I never saw anyone try to reforge etc.

Same applies to the overall loot and gear system. No real changes, but it’s hard to tell if they actually want to do something with it, or leave it as is. Since everything has a fixed effect now and passives have less of an impact, I think they are cutting down on the efficiency of heavy min/maxing.

The 2nd mission in the demo and especially the boss seemed to be really hard… not sure how much of this is on purpose, so people engage more with the systems available, or they didn’t just fine-tune the balance (yet). The bosses dark realm phases fuck people so hard lol
Will probably be a Nue situation though, where the version in the final game is a lot tamer than the version in the early demo.

I dunno why people are complaining about the visuals though… it’s on the same hardware, on the same engine with a focus on short loading and stable FPS… I do think they made some noticeable improvements. Some effects e.g. Fire look better and the lighting overall seems more atmospheric. You also have a far longer view distance and more interesting architecture. Imo the 2 levels are quite a step up from what we had before.

Overall I’m mildly positive about most of the changes they did make and think they present a sufficient evolution in those areas… from what I can tell the “too similar to the last game” card is only pulled if some desired change wasn’t made, disregarding any other changes. I obviously want Nioh 2 to play a lot like Nioh… because I like Nioh…

I guess they probably should do something about the loot system though (even though it doesn’t bother me all that much)… my suggestion is to switch to a socket-augment/gem system for gear and then have random common gear drops from enemies, fixed unique one-time gear drops from certain chests/bosses etc. And then just have random augments drop that you can slot into your weapons and obviously the most desirable drops come from bosses and can be rare. A bit like Bloodborne, just with more effects. Also, have some unique accessories (e.g. Yasakani Magatama) with fixed stats alongside the semi-random ones we have now.

It might be a good idea to hard cap the Yokai transform time (and then d.g hand out some buffs if you had bar left), or significantly increase the required Amrita absorption once the natural transformation time is exceeded.

Stealth Attacks should work on Yokai properly now that you can grapple them.

Oh… and just make a bunch of low effort enemies to pad the enemy pool… Sekiro has crickets ffs.

Edit: Here's a video from the guy who originated a lot of the broken builds in Nioh 1 XD

PS: I'm editing this with new/more accurate info
 
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DestructionBomb

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Bronx, NY
Main Character
Pai Chan
I completely finished the demo including the Twilight mission which is the first mission again (Twilight missions are back as well). I am going to start it up again in a few minutes, is there anything you wanted to confirm for me to check?

Game is a blast.
 
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