I got to attend the media days for Tokyo Game Show 2023 and as I recover from the crowded trains and 20,000 or more steps daily I had to go through for the week (I enjoyed the trip despite this, to be sure), let me share with you the memories and moments that left an impression on me for my run with the event. Though, let me say this, two 8-hour days is probably enough for you to get what you want the most, but it’s nowhere near enough to go through everything. The event is so massive that it felt like I was in the Elden Ring of gaming conventions. When I thought I had reached the end, there was more to be found, if there was anything I could wish for in the event it would be for it to be a hyperbolic chamber so I can just go through everything without worrying about the time. But that’s enough about that, let’s go break down my highlights for TGS 2023.
Person 3 Reload
Yes, I know, Persona 3 isn’t exactly a surprise hit or anything, and it already has so many expansions, re-releases, and external media beyond the game. But as a person who already finished Persona 3 and would rather keep it behind myself, this game was pretty great. Of course, we get the fresh coat of paint thanks to the Unreal Engine doing its best to deliver to the public the best anime looking characters out there. In addition to that, the character designs are updated to better match their roles as combatants during the dark hour. The interface enjoys the update treatment as well, staying true to the aesthetic and keeping up with the level of design of more recent games.
On top of that, Persona 3 Reload enjoys the innovations brought about by titles after it. You can now pass your bonus action to another team member to maximize your knockdown combos, and they even get a new function that’s like old school limit breaks in Final Fantasy. These new capabilities are sure to make battles faster, and fun, and will also make new opportunities for Atlus to make challenges for the more seasoned gamers who love Person 3.
People that know me know that I’m not a Dynasty Warriors fan, that I think the combat of the game is rather one-note and boring. But, that was probably a long time ago, because I don’t recognize the combat in Fate/Samurai Remnant to be this fun and cool, except maybe for the button input style.
It’s also a plus that the voice work is great, and that this is the Fate/ universe we’re talking about, of which I am a big fan of. It also features a surprisingly engaging town to move around in, a surprise I welcome.
Also, you pet animals to heal, and that kind of function just makes sense to me. I’m going to try to get my hands on a review copy if possible to tell you guys more about it in the future!
Fate/Samurai Remnant is releasing this September 29!
Coneru Dimension Girl
This isn’t complicated, it’s an action-platformer where a girl combines with some sort of cross-dimensional entity to beat up baddies and run around really fast. It feels very reminiscent of Megaman games, a genre I have sorely missed. So far it’s a demo and probably won’t be completed any time soon, but the simple joy of running around because I became invincible along with the tight and responsive controls does gain my appreciation.
Here’s their steam page if you want to wishlist this game in progress!
Zenless Zone Zero
Finally having my hands on the demo, I can confidently say that the combat feels great. Buttons feel responsive and the boss that took me down was a good enough challenge to make me pay attention to its movements and try to figure out how to optimize my team rotations.
Honestly, ZZZ being a good game is hardly a surprise given MiHoyo and it’s pedigree, and I look forward to seeing more in the future. Also, the whole vintage aesthetic really sells the game to me.
ZZZ’s release isn’t known yet, but here’s their twitter page if you want to keep up with their latest posts!
Breakers – Unlock the World
One look at the combat and you can tell this is a Genshin-like. With characters to rotate within your team, ultimate attacks to charge, and even enemy swings to dodge. So why does this win enough points for the mention?
First, the combat is solid, things that look similar don’t feel as satisfying to fight through. Breakers earns my attention thanks to the engaging mechanics. But that’s not all, the cutscenes, which usually fails me when it comes to HoYoverse games, actually wins me over because of how direct and natural the characters speak to each other are. It’s a big plus that the game pretty much looks like an animated video with the expressive faces, actions, and literally a timeline you can move forward and back in. You have no idea how much I value being able to skim through cutscenes, or playback moments I may have failed to understand or miss.
So, hopefully the gacha that comes out of this clearly F2P game does not ruin the experience.
Breakers isn’t available in English, yet. But here’s their twitter page if you want to se more!
Yohane the Parhelion – Numazu in the Mirage / Blaze in the Deep Blue
Yes, this one character from a Love Live series is that popular. Not one, but two games, at the same time. One is a deck builder roguelike, and the other a retro-action platformer. If you’re thinking “wow, those are the popular indie genres.” I would say you are correct.
I wouldn’t really say there’s much to in the means of originality, but the polish and production quality of both games kind of put my doubts to rest. There’s going to be quite a bit of people who would enjoy this game for what it is, and that includes me.
Yasha: Legends of the Demon Blade
Action top-down roguelike, yes, another one. The gameplay is quite tight with multiple enemies coming down at you in waves. Being able to swap between two weapons that function quite differently, and combining that with universal functions and controls, it felt like I can do so much with it. From my short 15-minute play session, I’d have to say I was only scratching the surface.
I recommend you check out the steam page and Wishlist it if you find it interesting as well!
Dragons Dogma II
I loved the first one, the sequel demo play basically allowed me to go about the open areas freely, where encounters didn’t feel on-rails as I can go into any direction I wanted, and from there the nature of an encounter could be entirely different based on my actions beforehand.
Despite being unable to lock-on, the combat felt adequate and intuitive, I hope to see more about this game soon!
Dragon’s Dogma 2 has no release date yet, but it does have a Steam page.
This is a Bullet Hell Rhythm Game. I’m terrible at both. However, the concept is very wild, and I can see myself trying to master this. This title is currently available on mobile!
Here is the steam page for their original game!