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October 2023

Nioh 2

Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5
Genre: Action/Adventure
Publisher: Koei Tecmo
Developer: Team Ninja
Release Date: March 13, 2020


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PS4 Review - 'Nioh 2' The Tengu's Disciple DLC

by Chris "Atom" DeAngelus on Aug. 17, 2020 @ 12:30 a.m. PDT

Prepare to be overwhelmed with intense action and experience the ultimate sense of accomplishment with the Sengoku masocore title, Nioh 2!

Buy Nioh 2

The Tengu's Disciple returns you to the world of Nioh 2 — sort of. It opens with you being transported back in time, long before the events of Nioh 2, where you meet historical figures like Minamoto no Yoshitsune, though much as in the main game, they're given a yokai-themed makeover. Unfortunately, time travel means the DLC is disconnected from the main Nioh 2 game, so you can't expect to see any favorite characters returning. It's neat to see an earlier time period and discover more about the history of the yokai-infested game setting.

In essence, The Tengu's Disciple is a self-contained expansion pack for the main story. While it technically takes place before the main game, it's intended to be played afterward. As such, the core gameplay is straightforward. Everything you encountered in the main game is still here. There are new monsters aplenty, including several awesome bosses that I don't want to spoil, but you're getting pretty much exactly what you'd expect: more enemies, more bosses, more Nioh.

The good news is that all of this content is very well designed. The new enemies are fun to fight, with the possible exception of an annoying "shielded" enemy who's more tedious than enjoyable. The bosses continue Nioh 2's method of having incredibly epic fights against the yokai forces. Since there are new yokai, there are also new yokai cores, which are cool but far from necessary, especially since you've probably built a fairly comfortable setup by the time you reach The Tengu's Disciple.

The biggest addition to The Tengu's Disciple is the new splitstaff weapon. An additional weapon that scales off your magic stat, it allows Onmyo magic users to augment the switchglaive weapon with another secondary weapon without hindering your ability to use magic. It's an unusual weapon with a different kind of combo string. If you hold the button after attacking, the splitstaff transforms, which allows you to attack at longer ranges and in different ways. It's a fun weapon on its own, but it also helps Onmyo magic builds feel more significant. The only downside is that it won't offer much if that isn't your particular build tree.

The biggest problem with The Tengu's Disciple is similar to the issues with the original Nioh DLC: It's for people who are into min-maxing and perfecting their builds and skills far more than it is about plot or a casual experience. This is excellent for someone who adores Nioh 2 and wants more reasons to return to it, but if you're not feeling the itch to return, this DLC won't change your mind. It's not a huge flaw, and anyone who liked Nioh 2 will almost certainly enjoy The Tengu's Disciple, but it's very much a "more and more" situation, rather than anything that drastically changes the game.

All in all, Nioh 2: The Tengu's Disciple is a solid piece of DLC. It doesn't break the mold, and it doesn't offer much that's new. What it does offer is more of the enjoyable gameplay that made Nioh 2 so fun. The new weapon is a nice bonus, even if it isn't for every player, and there's about 9-10 hours of content here. It's only for Nioh die-hards, but at $10, it's easily worth the price.

Score: 8.0/10

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