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E3 2013: Muramasa Rebirth is ever so pretty

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muramasa rebirth
One game I was quite looking forward to experiencing at E3 2013 is a title most Vita owners have been salivating over. It’s Muramasa Rebirth, a port of Vanillaware’s Wii classic, with updated visuals, a new translation and four extra DLC scenarios. The DLC scenarios naturally weren’t present for the demo, what with them not even having been released in Japan yet, but the full game was ready to play, so I stepped up and started Momohime’s story.

For those who don’t know, Muramasa Rebirth‘s Momohime is a princess whose soul was forced out of her body by a man named Jinkuro. Jinkuro wanted to use a special technique that would put his soul in the body of her fiance, Yukinojyo, but she got in the way protecting him. So now, Jinkuro is in Momohime’s body. Jinkuro is then journeying, as Momohime, from Kyo to Edo in search of his sword.

All caught up? Good, let’s go.

Muramasa Rebirth is designed to look, play and read better on the Vita than the Wii release. I was only able to sample a snippet of the text, in a portion where Momohime is in the underworld and her soul is displaced by Jinkuro’s, but I can already attest that it read better than the original localization by Ignition Entertainment. Aksys did a wonderful job, as usual, of capturing the mood and emotion of the game and characters with the text.

Most importantly, it looks stunning. You know how good the Muramasa Rebirth screenshots, like the one above, look? Well, they don’t even do the game justice. There’s something about seeing it in person, on a Vita, that’s just magic. It’s beautiful. My initial impression was that it actually looked like an Ukiyo-e painting set in motion. It was magic.

Muramasa Rebirth controlled wonderfully as well. There were no touch screen controls used during my play session. The controls can be remapped, but I was fine with the standard control scheme. This is especially due to the dedicated jump button. Everything is very simple and intuitive, and I could see returning masters and newcomers quickly acclimating.

My session lasted as long as the first boss battle. It took some time, but I’m proud to say that I did win. After which, I had to move on as there were more Aksys games to play. Though honestly, I have to say the time spent with Muramasa Rebirth was my favorite.

Here’s an extra, added bonus. Aksys had the Muramasa Rebirth premium edition items on display in its booth. We knew Vanillaware was making a limited edition lithograph just for this release, and I was one of the first people to see it. I snapped a picture for you, so you can see a gorgeous image of Kisuke and Torahime.

muramasa rebirth limited edition print

Muramasa Rebirth comes out June 25, 2013. It will be available on cartridges and the PlayStation Store, with a standard edition costing $39.99 and the special edition priced at $59.99. You get an exclusive Vita skin, Vita case, protective bag and the limited print above with the limited edition.

Site [Aksys Games]

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