Onechanbara Z2: Chaos (PlayStation 4) Review

By Az Elias 08.01.2016

Review for Onechanbara Z2: Chaos on PlayStation 4

The Onechanbara series has seen few releases outside of Japan, and the ones that have made it over the seas have generally been judged harshly. It only takes a quick look at the cover of one of these 3D beat 'em ups to get an idea of what's in store: scantily-clad bikini babes, zombies, samurai swords, chainsaws and a whole lot o' blood! It would be easy to dismiss Onechanbara Z2: Chaos without looking twice, but that would be doing it an injustice.

This may not be right up there with the likes of Bayonetta or Devil May Cry, but Onechanbara Z2: Chaos respectably holds its own very well as a competent action game. Switching between each of the four Vampiric and Baneful girls freely during battles is its biggest draw, where the most powerful and stylish of combos can be performed with pinpoint button timing.

Pressing an attack button at the right moment after the previous action will perform "Cool" combinations, and tying a sequence of these together perfectly and switching another character in at the last moment will unleash incredible moves that lay monsters to waste. All four of the girls can get in on this, if done successfully, but it's very hard to pull off due to the DualShock 4's touchpad needing to be pressed to switch them in - not always easy to do in the heat of the moment.

Screenshot for Onechanbara Z2: Chaos on PlayStation 4

Each girl has two fighting styles and a sub-weapon, so there is no shortage of variety on the combat front. Through a simple tap of the X button, a dash into mid-air can be performed, which drags locked-on enemies (or any fiends standing in the way) into the air, where continuous air combos can be pulled off for dramatic and useful effect. Enemies are at a loss once off the ground, so learning to juggle and switching in the other ladies at the right time is a key component in surviving harder difficulties.

Onechanbara Z2: Chaos' real weaknesses exist outside of its slick, fast-paced combat. Levels are largely uninspired and lacking any degree of originality, which is made worse still through the lacklustre presentation of bad textures and last-gen enemy models. Bosses should have been one of the areas this game went nuts in, but they, too, are uncreative in both design and strategy; it is basically just a case of whack it till it's dead.

This is a short title, but has a host of replay value with the hordes of trophies, quests, missions, and unlockables that can genuinely be a blast to work through. The story is largely needlessly unclear, but it embraces its B-movie cheesiness for the better, which allows it to stand out from the crowd, especially with its so-bad-it's-good auto-tuned soundtrack supplementing the over-the-top action. It's just a shame the repetitive stage structure grows tiresome quicker than hoped, but, then, it's probably a good thing the story mode doesn't drag on, after all.

Screenshot for Onechanbara Z2: Chaos on PlayStation 4

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

It's mindless and corny hack 'n' slash fun. It doesn't try to be much more, nor does it need to. Onechanbara Z2: Chaos knows exactly what and who it's aiming for, and it succeeds. It's not a 3D brawler comparable to the best of them, but it is one that can be a perfect little time waster, provided emphasis on plot, stage variety, and graphics isn't a major concern. The heavy fan service may have resulted in a lack of focus elsewhere, but in an era of serious games, this is the sort of break from the norm that's needed. Onechanbara Z2: Chaos doesn't give a crap, and the industry is all the better for it.

Developer

D3 Publisher

Publisher

NIS America

Genre

Brawler

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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