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Muramasa: The Demon Blade

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Game Reviewed: Muramasa: The Demon Blade
Publisher: Ignition Entertainment
Developer: Vanillaware
Reviewer: Cecil
Platform: Wii
ESRB Rating: T
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Game Description:

Muramasa: The Demon Blade saunters through a great storyline backed by well-composed music and incredible artwork.

In this single player game, you choose to be Momohime, a princess possessed by Jinkuro, the disembodied soul of a master swordsman determined to find revenge and become the ultimate samurai or Kisuke, a resurrected ninja imbued with the secret art of a dead sword maker. Their journey takes the player across feudal Japan seeking to bring their own form of justice throughout the land.

Aided by peasants, peddlers and a variety of other characters, Momohime/Kisuke journey throughout the land in search of Demon Blades, swords forged with powers from Hell to break supernatural wards, in order to discover the mystery of their current affliction (possession or amnesia respectively) while battling mythical creatures, warrior monks, ninjas and ghosts.

Throughout their journeys, each player independently collects special items (such as belts, masks and necklaces), cooks and eats meals (yams, rice balls, miso soup, sushi), gather scattered souls (glowing blue “flames”), and forges swords to build their repertoire into a fierce force of justice. However, some things, such as certain demon swords, cannot be acquired unless both characters have particular items in their possession at the same time making this a unique side-scrolling, single-player game. Balanced with the right amount of action, challenges, mystery and authentic dialogue (which is Japanese with English subtitles), Muramasa: The Demon Blade offers countless hours of exciting gameplay.

What Parents Need to Know

Violence

A moderate level of violence is to be expected as the premise of Muramasa revolves around collecting and using a large collection of swords.

However, there is no blood, gore or dismemberment. Characters simply fall or are knocked to the ground when they are defeated.

Language

No bad language.

Sexual Content

While Muramasa is rated “T” by the ESRB, I would not recommend this game for young teens. Throughout the game there are several characters that are provocatively dressed to the point of showing deep cleavage, barely covered and heaving breasts as well as male characters in loin clothes. There is also a hot spring that can be visited where the female hero, Momohime, is covered by holding a towel in front of her. Part of her backside can be seen and other characters in the hot springs may also be similarly covered.

There are also suggestive comments or conversations that occur throughout the game as the heroes interact with other characters, such as referring to someone as sexy or to prostitution.

Spiritual Content

As the title states, this game certainly involves demons as well as gods, mythical creatures, disembodied souls, ghosts, spirits, and were-creatures. Considering the premise of Muramasa: The Demon Blade revolves around a cursed sword and two heroes inflicted by some spiritual act (Momohime is off and on possessed by the disembodied soul of a samurai; Kisuke was resurrected by the spirit or ghost of a sword master), this game is heavily laden with spiritual content. Spiritual or soul-possession is fundamental to the story line while sub-themes such as hauntings, Eastern mysticism, and magic are also common through charms, spells, curses, etc.

Misc.

Alcohol use can also be found in the game as the heroes, by purchase, find and rely on various forms of alcohol (i.e.: liquor, sake, etc) to increase their health and supplement their abilities.

Reviewer''s Thoughts

For fans of classic style platformer RPGs who want a new twist and beautiful artwork, this is well worth the ticket price. However, between the innuendos and alcohol references (and spiritual content for those sensitive to supernatural overtones), Muramasa: The Demon Blade is probably best recommended for older audiences only.



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