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Deception

Review: Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess

Jul 14 // Chris Carter
Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess (PS3, PS4 [reviewed], Vita)Developer: Tecmo KoeiPublisher: Tecmo KoeiMSRP: $49.99 (PS4)Released: July 14, 2015 Since the core experience hasn't changed all that much, head to the original review to get a full breakdown of the main mechanics. The gist is that you'll be controlling a character that, for all intents and purposes, can't attack on their own, and must rig an elaborate combination of traps to do their dirty work for them. You'll do this by pausing the game, bringing up a menu, and placing a number of wall, ceiling, and floor traps that can be used with one another for maximum mayhem. For instance, you can hold an enemy in place with a beartrap, shock them with a wall taser, then drop a giant boulder on their head from the ceiling. It's glorious. So before you get confused, The Nightmare Princess is an all-new SKU that includes everything in the original package on top of another story with 100 quests, a new character with a different moveset, and a "Studio" mode so you can create your own scenarios. The extra campaign is easily the new draw, and I have to say, newcomer Velguirie holds her own here. Her tale runs concurrently with Laegrinna's and doesn't feel tacked-on in the slightest. 100 new quests also isn't really anything to shake a stick at either, though it must be said that there's only a few new zones (which are rather small), as some quests re-use old areas from the base game. The second campaign does stand up on its own, and even playing both stories back to back, they didn't overstay their individual welcomes. Velguirie's big gimmick is that she can kick enemies now -- something no other protagonist was able to do in the history of the franchise. [embed]295432:59487:0[/embed] But it's important to put things into perspective here. She can't just karate-kick bad guys into oblivion with flashy combos. It's a simple timed kick on a cooldown that can be used to tactically slot foes into position for traps (or stomp them on the ground), which are still going to do the real legwork here. It's not a game-changer, but again, the story, bonus traps, and the new character design themselves are enough to carry another playthrough. Yep, I said bonus traps, including a deadly toilet, a bolt of lightning, a wardrobe that eats armor, and sticky flooring. At this point there are so many trap combos at your disposal that you're only limited by your imagination.  You'll get to test your inner demon plenty with the Studio mode, the other big addition in Nightmare Princess. Here, you can create enemies with various custom parts and name them, placing each creation inside an existing arena. You can craft fun scenarios like battling the entire Justice League, and even download or upload them online for all to see. It's not as expansive as I would have liked, but the fact that you can download new missions every so often is a breakthrough for the series. Keep in mind that your fun is also going to be limited by how many actual parts you have, which are unlocked by completing both campaigns. Here's the bad news for those of you who already bought the original. While the new story is enjoyable and the Studio is fun to mess around with, you aren't getting a substantial new expansion to pour over for weeks here. Think of it more like a hefty DLC package. In other words, unless you absolutely love Deception, it probably isn't a good idea to shell out $50 for Nightmare Princess. It's a really weird thing for Koei Tecmo to do, as it could have easily provided an "upgrade" for say, $20, and then released a package version on the side. As it stands, you either have to go all or nothing. At the very least, there is the added bonus of being able to import your old save data, so you don't have to complete the original campaign all over again to reap the unlock benefits. Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess is in a really weird spot, but here's the rub -- as a Deception enthusiast, I was more than happy enough to take Velguirie's story for a spin, and I found myself beating the original game again as well as creating a few levels in the Studio. Just know exactly what you're getting into with Nightmare and make an informed decision. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Deception IV review photo
Hardcore trappers only
I really liked the original release of Deception IV. It was refreshing to see the series get another lease on life after taking a hiatus with Trapt all the way back in 2005, and newcomer Laegrinna fit right in. This...

Deception IV photo
Let me show you
When Deception: The Nightmare Princess was announced, a wave of confusion crept up on every Deception IV owner. Is it DLC? Is an an expansion? Well, it's a weird combo! I just got my hands on a US copy of the game ...

Deception IV photo
Deception IV

Create your own character to kill with Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess' studio


More than 180 traps
Jun 10
// Chris Carter
I really liked Deception IV, and I'm so down for more later this year once The Nightmare Princess hits. On arrival, it'll sport the "Deception Studio" mode, which allows you to create characters to maim and kill. You ca...
Deception IV photo
Deception IV

Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess confirmed for North America


In July as 'The Nightmare Princess'
Apr 30
// Chris Carter
Deception IV was an amazing return to form on the PS3 and Vita for the Deception series, and thankfully, the good times are rolling with the Another Princess expansion. It was originally announced for the PS3, ...
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Deception IV

This Deception IV: Another Princess trailer is probably the best thing I've seen all year


Love that goofy 'slide' sound at 1:47
Feb 11
// Chris Carter
Deadly toilets, nut shots, kendo athlete statues, goofy playground slides -- you'll see it all in this new trailer for Deception IV: Another Princess. It's not just silliness abound in the video though, as you'll see plenty of new traps, menus, locations, quests (that menu at 0:45 looks massive), and characters. It'll arrive in March in Japan, hopefully selling enough for a localization.
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Deception IV

Deception IV: Another Princess adds a school and hospital setting


This game gets better every week
Feb 06
// Chris Carter
I can't contain my excitement for Deception IV: Another Princess. While everything shown off so far has been great, including the first playable character with direct physical attacks, these new settings are the best fea...
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Deception IV

Yep, Deception IV: Another Princess still looks amazing


Gimme
Jan 16
// Chris Carter
I'm really glad that the Deception series is getting a new lease on life. After the success of Deception IV on the PS3 and Vita, Koei Tecmo is releasing an expansion of sorts called Another Princess on the sam...
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Deception IV

Deception IV: Another Princess' editor mode gets new details, legacy traps


Gimme
Jan 07
// Chris Carter
Deception IV: Another Princess sounds amazing. The core game was already packed in with stuff to do, but the upcoming expansion is adding a ton of stuff as well as an all-new hero. Legacy fans have a lot to be excited about, ...
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Deception IV

First Deception IV: Another Princess screens show toilet trap


Badass bidet
Dec 19
// Chris Carter
We already knew a bit about the upcoming Deception IV: Another Princess expansion/re-release, including the addition of new traps, a new protagonist, and a quest mode, but seeing it in action is something else entirely. ...
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Deception IV

Deception IV: Another Princess adds on a ton to the core game


Yissss
Dec 18
// Chris Carter
Deception IV is a great game that really reminded me of good old-school design. On the surface everything is fairly easy to pick up, but there's a ton of secrets and hidden content with the core package that's -- gasp -- on t...

Very Quick Tips: Deception IV: Blood Ties

Mar 25 // Chris Carter
General tips: Every piece of damage you do contributes to each discipline -- elaboration, sadism, and humiliation. Think of Elaboration traps more as "setups" for other gadgets, as they tend to do miniscule damage, but position the target accordingly. Sadist traps are basically your major damage dealers, like arrows, buzzsaws, and the like. Humiliation is a unique discipline because those traps are kind of a mix of the other two schools.As a general rule, most players will probably want to min-max Sadism, so you have heavy traps to deal with some of the harder foes in the game. Play the game the way you want to play it, but if you're having trouble, consider using more damage traps so you can earn more Sadist XP and unlock better ones. Use line of sight to your advantage, especially with NPCs that can't jump or ninja-flip over walls. If you get a trap ready behind a wall, the enemy will often take the shortest path towards your character -- leaving them open to well-placed combo openers.Re-position your combos if a jumping enemy doesn't seem to quite fit into your master plan. Bait them into jumping right into a combo opener like a bear trap or a lethal lance. Speaking of openers, a really good early-game combo is as follows: start off with a bear trap one square away from a wall, then suck the enemy into the wall with the lethal lance. Place a spike ceiling trap there, and then initiate a pendulum guillotine to swing in any direction, followed by dropping a boulder on their heads. You can put this combo on stairs to give yourself even more leeway with boulders. Take lots of different traps -- don't just min-max with all ceiling, floor, or wall types. Having said that, ceiling traps are one of the most diverse categories in the game, as they can go practically anywhere with very little setup needed. Almost no one is immune to the wall spikes you get early in the game (lethal lance). Use this to your advantage, and set up traps that enemies otherwise resist (like boulders or guillotines) -- once they're stunned or open to attack, they're vulnerable. Periodically go back into your trap selection screen and see what your maximum (equipped) trap allotment is. It could increase randomly after a series of levels and you might not have noticed it. In order to create and download quests, you need to finish at least one mission in Mission Mode -- you don't have to beat the story to unlock it.
Deception IV tips photo
Appease the Goddesses of Humiliation, Elaboration, and Sadism
Deception IV is a unique release, mainly due to the fact that there aren't many trap-setting games on the market in general. Because of that, it's often hard for people to acclimate if they've never played a past entry before (Trapt is on the PSN, by the way) -- so here are some tips to help you along.

Review: Deception IV: Blood Ties

Mar 25 // Chris Carter
Deception IV: Blood Ties (PS3 [reviewed], Vita)Developer: Tecmo KoeiPublisher: Tecmo KoeiRelease: March 25, 2014Price: $59.99 (PS3) / $39.99 (Vita) Blood Ties has little in the way of setup and nuance. In short, you play the role of Laegrinna, the "daughter" of the devil, whose sole purpose is to collect 12 artifacts and resurrect her father to create hell on Earth. She's not alone in this endeavor, as three demonic goddesses are at her side, representing elaboration, sadism, and humiliation. As usual, Deception follows the occult theme to the letter, offering up demonic and holy imagery galore, with Tecmo Koei's signature style mixed in. This time around however Tecmo has opted to not record an English voice track, which makes it less cheesy on the whole and much easier to watch. The Japanese audio throughout makes for a better experience, albeit a more niche one if anime openings aren't your thing. The story is straightforward with almost no twists or turns along the way, but the macabre presentation and the chuckle-inducing writing helps draw you in. Make no mistake though, the story is mostly a delivery system for the gameplay, which is where the real meat of the game lies. That demonic trio I mentioned earlier? They're conveniently color-coded as blue, red, and yellow respectively, representing the three "schools" of traps you can use. Elaborate traps tend to set up other types, sadist traps do the bulk of your damage, and humiliation is basically a mix of the two. If you know what you're doing you can jump right in and skip the tutorial, but most people will want to re-acclimate -- especially since Deception games are few and far between. [embed]272064:53096:0[/embed] For the uninitiated, what you're essentially doing is "rigging" various rooms with traps in a grid-like fashion from a giant arsenal of deadly tools ranging from anything to vases that drop from the sky to blind foes to simple arrow launchers to giant boulders that can roll down inclined surfaces. Note that this game doesn't take place all in real-time, as you'll pause the action momentarily to place said contraptions -- but once you put them down, the game will remember their locations within a level so you don't have to set them again. Where Deception IV really shines is the sheer variety of traps on offer, as the humiliation tree in particular tends to go over-the-top with its stable of zany choices. It's really strange at first to set up a rake for someone to hit their face with, Looney Tunes-style, so that they can get impaled on a giant bed of bloody spikes, but you'll quickly get used to how much power Deception offers to play the way you want. You only start with the ability to setup a trio of traps in tandem, but eventually you'll unlock more, to the point where the possibilities are as endless as your imagination. For instance, you can setup a combo to fling someone onto a specific block by way of a pendulum-swung guillotine, then spring a bear trap to lock them in place. You can then use a moving wall to "push" them into another spot, and drop a vase on their head. As they're wandering around aimlessly, you can pop another trap that hits a flimsy column, causing it to come down smashing on their head, at which point you'll finish them off with a giant Indiana Jones-style boulder for extra measure -- the latter of which can be directed by placing spring board traps that come from underneath the ground. You'll have four themed worlds to play around in, all of which have their own environmental traps that help mix up your combo creation even more -- I'm talking anything from tiny flying blimps with missiles to arcane artifacts that shoot magic bullets. I wish there was at least one more arena included, but all four are packed to the gills with personality. Enemies won't just sit idly by though as you hack them to bits -- many of them have the ability to jump, sneak up behind you, dodge traps, or nullify certain types entirely with bulky armor. Often times three enemies appear at a time, sometimes with abilities that complement each other, like fire and ice magic that can burn you for damage over time and freeze you, respectively. You can use the "Devil's Eye" mechanic to learn more about each enemy (including a miniature backstory), but for the most part you'll need to rely on your wits and master every type of trap. Abilities like dodging and dashing make Deception IV more action-oriented than in the past, and offer even more customization elements for Laegrinna. So long as you can deal with pausing the action occasionally to put traps down, you'll enjoy yourself. I've often said that I'll take smooth gameplay over cutting-edge visuals any day, and Deception IV embodies that philosophy perfectly. Deception IV features a consistent framerate, and the animations are flawless. It's not a technical marvel by any means even on the PlayStation 3, but it works, and that's what's important. After you're done with the roughly 10-hour campaign, there's so much you can do in Deception IV it's almost overwhelming. There's a free battle mode that lets you run wild with any enemies or areas you choose, allowing you to practice combos to your heart's content and check out any environmental traps you might have missed. There's also 100 challenge missions on offer, which range from "kill this enemy within this time limit" to "complete these specific trap requirements." Although some are less inspired than others, they go by rather quickly and will challenge even the most learned of Deception veterans. Then you have the Quest Creation mode, which lets you pick your own areas, enemies, and objectives, then test them out and post them online. Likewise, you can download other creations and try them out. I should also mention that there are plenty of unlockables, including new traps and costumes -- all included in the base game without DLC. Well done, Tecmo Koei.If the idea of setting up methodical, creative puzzles sounds like a good time, you'll love Deception IV. It's easily the most packed game in the series, and with its optional tutorials, it's even a great first stop for genre newcomers. After many years of lying dormant with the franchise Tecmo Koei has once again showed us that they still have it, and I for one wouldn't mind seeing more Deception games in my lifetime.
Deception IV review photo
Bloody great
The Deception franchise is a series I wish more people were aware of. Although the concept of a character that can't physically defend themselves isn't typically a popular go-to mechanic, this survival horror-like idea i...

Deception IV photo
Deception IV

These new Deception IV trailers are sufficiently absurd


All Nightmare Long
Mar 21
// Chris Carter
Want to get an idea of what the gameplay is like in Deception IV? Watch these trailers to see how exactly the trap setting mechanic works. It's not very action oriented, with more of an emphasis on the strategic placement of traps for fun and profit. It may not be for everyone, but I've been waiting years for a Deception follow-up, so expect a full review sometime next week.
Deception photo
Deception

This is how to build a trap in Deception IV


And the rest of the Deception series, basically
Feb 20
// Chris Carter
Deception IV is on the way here, and if you think it's going to be a constantly action packed experience, you should check out the above trailer. Essentially, the vast majority of your time is going to be spent in menus...
Deception IV photo
Deception IV

Deception IV: Blood ties dated: March 25, 2014


Coming to PS3 and Vita
Jan 17
// Dale North
Tecmo Koei has dropped the official date for Deception IV: Blood Ties for North America this morning: March 25, 2014. This follow-up to the PlayStation classic Tecmo's Deception is coming to PS3 and Vita -- traps and deaths a...

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