Game Info
Playstation 2
Official Website
ESRB Rating
Animated Violence
The Good

Cheap price
Good if you're in a "beat 'em up" mood

The Bad

Music is uninspired and forgettable
Levels are bland
Collision detection is off at times


I don't know why so many people shudder at the mere mention of this game. This is a solid action game that no one should miss out on, or at least try. The controls are what most people who've played this game complain about. It really is not that difficult if you sit down and take the time to get used to it. Albeit the game isn't perfect, but altogether it is a good game.

The gameplay in Oni is overall smooth. There are times when the frame rate is clearly 60+ fps, but when there are a lot of enemies on the screen the frame rate drops noticeably and it gets annoying, but thankfully that doesn't happen all the time. This game is a rather good mix of martial arts action and run & gun shooting. The enemy AI is kind of off balanced. Sometimes it can go from incredibly simple to a little too smart. Another thing that detracts from the gameplay are the sloooow loading times (about 2 minutes). Each time you die you have to wait for the level to finish loading all over again which is a deterrent for a lot of people and sometimes even me. A plus for this game is the tutorial when you being a new game. The weapons in this game are cool. There are hand guns, electric tazer-like thing, crossbow, and plasma rifle.

You take on the role of TCTF (Technology Crimes Task Force) agent Konoko and you go on missions to try and thwart the evil Syndicate. The story starts off pretty simple and more and more info unfolds leading up to the plot twists so the game somewhat interesting but nothing engrossing.

Now here's the part of the game that is complained about the most. You'll use the R1 button to punch, R2 to kick and the game also uses the R3 button to pick up weapons and ammo. This game has an excellent number of combos to choose from. You'll learn more combos at each new level you reach and are hard to master, but it takes practice just like any other game. You'll sometimes get frustrated because when backing up, Konoko sometimes walks instead of runs backwards and that can get you "owned" by your opponent. Since, the weapons in this game are rather weak, you'll likely find yourself engaging in hand-to-hand combat anyway.

The graphics in Oni are nice, but nothing special. The only thing that wowed me was in the beginning when there is a close up of Konoko in her uniform. The chrome chest plate looked awesome. The environments were weak. The game has good textures and should have put them to use more. A lot of the levels look the same, but there are a few that look really good and stand out. There are no posters on the wall, or anything that really sticks out. The special effects from punches and kicks and the weapons were done pretty well. They are colorful and always easy on the eyes. The character models were good but the problem is, is that there should have been more of them. Something unique about this game is that when go near something stationary like a wall the wall will become semitransparent allowing you to see you opponents and environment. Like I said earlier, this game needs some environments that are truly memorable.

Sound. Here's an area where the game is lacking. When the music comes on you know there's something going to happen because a good portion of the game is silent. The music that you hear sounds like techno rave music or something and its upbeat. It would have been nice if you were able to choose a track from the game and have it play during the level. You can go ahead and crank up the volume on your stereo because you won't be missing out on much in terms of music. As for sound effects, by pressing the X button after fighting an enemy Konoko will say something witty like "You got beaten by a girl!" or something. The voice acting in Oni is pretty good. The voice actors sound believable and its just overall good :)

The only real replay value from this game is to play to master the martial arts moves. There is a code however, that allows you to play as some of the other models from the game which is pretty cool, but that's about it.

Overall I think this game is good and I think everyone should give it a try. The game is pretty cheap these days, I got it for $20 at Circuit City so you can't really go wrong with that.

- - Fox the Sly

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