Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet Review

This year, NIS America has definitely been one of the more underrated publishers. They’ve opened my eyes to genres I was never really keen to, and I’ve become enthralled into them ever since. However, their newest Playstation 4 release, Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet is a different kind of beast. The Touhou games have always been challenging bullet hells with extensive lore, but I was curious to see how it would transition to a console considering the game’s have been pretty PC centric. So, here are my thoughts!

Gameplay:

Touhou is pretty prolific in the bullet hell space, but Bullet Ballet isn’t just an anomaly because of it’s console choice. The game’s structure is almost similar to a fighter now, as you’re tasked with using all the strategies you’ve learned to take out another opponent who’s just as skilled as you. (If you’re lucky)

Mechanics are more of a lesson in precision. Taking risks can even increase meters, and you won’t be playing much of this game without seeing a good portion of your screen being taken over by bullets. And since you’re going against just one person, you have perfect more than your dodging, which seals the deal challenge-wise.

Story & Design:

The game’s story is a bit less enthralling than the manicness that Bullet Ballet suggests. A lot of dialogue elements seem to be lost in translation, and it’s one of those things were only hardcore fans would be able to appreciate the best jokes. However, considering how refined the gameplay is, I didn’t find this to be the greatest issue.

An online mode also exists, but I found it to be more of an afterthought. There simply aren’t a lot of people playing this game, and the process of just setting one up is rather clunky. Hopefully, this can be patched and what not, but it’s not like we don’t have a great single player here.

Presentation/ Visuals & Audio:

While the game’s presentation is detailed, a lot of it is much like the dialogue, only appealing to the truest fans. There are a lot of influences the game is based off of, and some might even have to be aware of those too. It’s almost like this aspect and the story require more work than the gameplay, which is somewhat ironic.

Conclusion:

Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet is a more modernized take on the bullet hell genre we know and love, but some issues nevertheless exist. Thankfully, these don’t bother with the great gameplay, but less experienced players will likely find this grating.

Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet gets a 7/10 (Average)

We’d like to thank NIS America for giving us a code!

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