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Demon Gaze II (PS4)

Developed by Kadokawa Games and Experience Inc., Demon Gaze II is available now on PS4 for £44.99.

Demon Gaze II is a dungeon crawler (DRPG), the sequel to Demon Gaze which was released back in 2013/14 for PS Vita. Speaking as someone who hasn’t played the original game, thankfully, no previous knowledge is required to enjoy the game as both games have different storylines.

As always I will endeavour to avoid any spoilers throughout my review.

Demon Gaze II is colourful with beautifully designed characters, monsters and surroundings, the attention to detail was noticeable. What stood out to me from the offset is the game’s music, there is something about it that is enchanting and it is well suited to the game. As with many of the anime games I’ve played, I really wish that there was more in the way of “chat” rather than just having to read subtitles but that’s just my preference.

It may seem a little odd to some but I really wish there was the ability to create your character as a female, it was quite strange having to be a male named “Sophie”. Perhaps, on the whole, it is not an important factor of the game but I felt that with the number of customisation options available it was a bit of a let down not being able to be a girl.  

So, you wake up and have little memory of anything, which is helpful as this is a perfect way to gently ease you into the game with an overview of the controls and combat. The controls are fairly straightforward and the menu layout is also simple to navigate through which I appreciated, being new to the game! Personally, I preferred using the d-pad to traverse the map, I found that moving around maps was a lot easier. As far as gameplay is concerned, it plays wonderfully without any stuttering, crashing or other irritating issues which sometimes can crop up in games.

Once you have created your character and found your way back to headquarters, met the other characters and been given a quest, the real fun begins. The evil mastermind, Magnastar, is up to no good and has spellbound the citizens of Asteria. As the Demon Gazer, you are tasked with finding and conquering the demon circles throughout hidden zones in the city of Asteria in order to help shine the light of revolution. Easy, right?

As you explore the areas within the city, you will find floating pink demon circles. In order to summon the enemies within the circle, you’ll need to have some gems to sacrifice which will, in turn, give you loot at the end of the battle so for example if you use an artifact gem, at the end of the battle you will have loot consisting of an artifact. Up to three gems can be used at any one circle so don’t do what I did and use three at every single circle you come across in the early stages as you’ll have to buy more! To be honest, that’s not really an issue as they’re fairly cheap and you earn a fair amount of money relatively easily.

As luck would have it, you happen to have a special talent which can capture (some of) the demons you fight and turn them into your allies. Of course, at the beginning, you are quite limited and begin with just the one demon but you can actually recruit up to four demons to your party. Each demon has their own unique skills and abilities being more suitable for certain enemy types than others. It is very much up to you how you wish to play as with a total of 16 demons to choose from, there are plenty of combinations to choose from. 

The combat in Demon Gaze II is turn-based and I really loved how there was the option of a “fast” attack which essentially repeats the last set of actions you carried out. I certainly wouldn’t advise using the faster attacks against the bosses but for the smaller enemies, it definitely helped to speed things along! After each battle, you and your demons will gain EXP which then increases stats and unlocks new skills and thankfully it doesn’t take very long before you get noticeably stronger than the enemies you first face, just remember to update and upgrade your equipment so you don’t become too squishy.

If there is one piece of advice I can give you it would be this: save often. I seem to have quite bad luck in games where I either forget to save or don’t initially realise that there is no autosave feature. Well, Demon Gaze II was no different for me and I lost a huge amount of progress because during a battle I got a little cocky and ended up dying, with no save file to go back to. It’s my own fault but if this little snippet of my experience helps anyone to actually save their game then I feel a little less bitter about it all.

Something I was quite surprised about in Demon Gaze II is that you can actually get to know and go on dates with the demons and increase your favourability with them. You have a mini-game to play where if you “touch the right spot” your reputation will increase. Ok, reading that back it seems a little sinister but I assure you, nothing untoward happens! It was nice to have something aside from dungeon crawling to be able to spend time doing.

Overall, I enjoyed playing Demon Gaze II, I found myself benefitting more from shorter bursts of playtime rather than dedicating an entire day to it but that’s just my personal opinion, of course. If I had to give it a score it would be 7/10. I think the game plays fine and it is an interesting concept but the story and the gameplay didn't compliment each other. I found myself being forced out of the game too often in order to watch cutscenes which progress the story but this happened so frequently that it detracted from the flow of the game. 

Demon Gaze II has a total of 45 trophies available to unlock. The majority of trophies are story related and will be unlocked through natural gameplay. All in all, there are no trophies that seem to be too taxing in terms of difficulty, they will just require a good amount of play time, which is certainly not a bad thing! 

A game code was provided for the purpose of this review. Thank you!
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