Onikira looks like a slicey dicey good time

Coming to Steam Early Access this Friday

Onikira: Demon Killer, a lovely samurai-centric 2D side-scrolling beat-’em-up, is set to slash its way onto Steam Early Access on November 14.

The game takes place in a fantasy feudal Japan, with the player assuming the role of Yamazaki Jiro; a samurai fighting to prevent the forces of the Japanese underworld, Yomi, from breaking through into the world of the living. Here’s a quote from the title’s official site describing combat:

Onikira: Demon Killer takes the deep fighting mechanics of some of the most amazing 3D beat ’em ups, like Ninja Gaiden or Bayonetta, and merges them with classic 2D platformer mechanics in a way that has never been done before. For example, launch an enemy into the air, wall jump to position yourself above them, then Katana Slam them into the ground. Switch to the Naginata and use the Naginata Lift and air dash moves to stay in the air and off crumbling platforms, while pulling enemies up to you to be dispatched in mid-air. Whip out your grappling hook to grapple between platforms, across chasms or fiery pits, all the while fending off enemies.”

I have to admit, the fighting mechanics do look satisfying in motion. The hand-painted art style coupled with the flexible combat system looks like it has the potential to be special. Features available in the Early Access build include the first two levels of the game with all four weapons unlocked, 50 moves to learn, five enemy types to disembowel, and a boss battle to top it all off.

Not too shabby for a $9.99 buy-in. Understandably, Early Access isn’t for everyone, but I think I’ll probably be picking up Onikira this Friday. Action games seem to lend themselves well to the Early Access program and I don’t think Digital Furnace’s will be an exception.

Rob Morrow