Video game test. Rise of the Ronin: a very elegant exclusive for PS5

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Sharpen your swords, because they will have to be very sharp to face your enemies in The Rise of the Roninthe new action and adventure game from the studio Ninja Team.

A highly anticipated game, as it was made by a renowned studio, which produced in particular the excellent Wo Long: Fallen Dyasty, Nioh, Dead or Alive and the Ninja Gaiden series…

Rise of the Ronin is also in the spotlight as it is the first major PS5 exclusive of the year 2024. Furthermore, compared long before its release with another gem, the famous Ghost of Tsushima, which also finds its inspiration in the samurai universe in Japan.

In a Japan in chaos, in the 19th centurymy century

We start by getting in the mood for this new Rise of the Ronin. “Japan, 1863. After three centuries of rule, the Tokugawa shogunate was coming to an end when the sudden arrival of Western black ships plunged the country into turmoil.

In the heart of a country plagued by chaos and division, an anonymous fighter prepares to forge his own path while influencing the destiny of Japan.

A long introduction

So how much is this new Rise of the Ronin worth? it is clearly a marvelLet’s say it from the beginning, although some elements qualify the feeling of praise that we have after more than 15 hours playing.

One of them almost quickly ruined our experience as it was the long and surprising introduction. For almost an hour we really questioned ourselves.

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Although they had shown us attractive trailers, promoting an incredible open world, full of adventures and exploration in flowery lands, we found ourselves in a completely opposite universe.

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Screenshot Actu.fr)

A dark atmosphere hung over the game, in corridor mode, with almost no possibility of going off the beaten path. Furthermore, with very few weapons available, little knowledge of how to use them and therefore repeated failures during the first confrontations with our enemies.

A nuanced first impression

A feeling of frustration took over this first operation, especially because the mechanics of using the available weapons did not seem very intuitive to us either…

Even on easy mode, the song was difficult to digest, with two or three pretty solid bosses who were already giving us a hard time. This is Team Ninja’s reputation, this studio’s games are difficult, although (thankfully) they relaxed a little on this one…

Finally this long-awaited open world

A little perseverance and we reached the title screen where, finally, all the promises of the trailers were going to come true! this famous open world, with full possibility of exploration. All these things to collect on the side of the road, trees, plants, minerals, to make potions and improve your status as a masterless samurai.

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5.
Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Team Ninja / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

You also have all these encounters to do, all these possibilities to perfect your weapons, make new friends or face hateful people on the road, horse thieves or attackers who bring terror to occupied villages…

Between side quests and the main adventureHours and hours of gameplay await you in this exciting adventure.

Move forward in stages

A first step tip, as in all games of this genre (adventure in open mode), is highly recommended properly “clean” a bare area completing all the side quests there, before continuing to advance in the main adventure.

As we have already said, the game is very tough and, despite several difficulty levels to choose from, it is essential to develop your skills to the maximum before facing other bosses even more devious than those you came to conquer.

In any case, the enemies you will encounter along the way will quickly make you feel if you neglect these side missions, very rewarding from every point of view. As he also recommended to go. liberate occupied townsto perfect your handling of weapons.

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5.
Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Team Ninja / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Technique is essential in fighting.

The Art of WarIt is a fundamental element of this game where you play a ronin, a samurai without a master. In this area, Team Ninja has once again stood out, producing high-quality combats where mastery of weapons and combat technique are essential.

Here it is impossible to play in “scold” mode, rushing in headlong and multiplying sword or spear blows against your opponents. You will deplete your energy gauge and your enemy will only have to land a few hits to defeat you.

It is necessary, on the contrary, manage your attacks well, but also places tiles at the right time when the enemy attacks. Without forgetting the dodges, essential to recover energy and launch a barrage of blows at your rivals.

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5.
Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Screenshot Actu.fr)

These fight sequences are clearly one of the strong points of the gamewith very beautiful scenes that are activated when master hits are performed.

Infiltration, another exciting way to play it

Another satisfaction, the possibility of playing. in infiltration mode. That is to say, we can decide to confront the enemies by surrounding them and seeking a silent execution (and also stealthy of course!).

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5.
Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Screenshot Actu.fr)

The bow is also very useful for kill without being detected. Which obviously reminds many players of the world of Assassin’s Creed.

Especially since here you can also land on the roof of a building to launch yourself at an enemy on the ground and kill him. Or climb it with our grappling hook, which is also used to cling to different anchor points on buildings to scale them.

You could almost believe yourself in Spider-Man, when you fly with your grappling hook from one point to another, but the sensation here does not last long, we are not in the streets of New York, but in 19th century Japan.my century plagued by turmoil and insecurity, during the Bakumatsu period.

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5.
Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Team Ninja / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

In the air, on horseback or on land

Speaking of flying, there are also these mechanical wings that you can deploy to project yourself into the air by launching yourself off a cliff or from the top of a watchtower. If you prefer to stay on land, horseback riding will also be very pleasant for your long trips around the map.

It is a huge “map” that awaits you, a bit in the same spirit, it is true, as Ghost of Tsushima, but we could also mention Horizon Forbidden West, why not also Hogwarts Legacy, Far Cry… the principles and the paths . gameplay are quite similar.

Side weapons, the shame of choice that also adds flavor to the sauce. Including firearms, to vary the pleasures, but also to appease some opponents who are a little more skilled than us with the katana or the double sword!

Rise of the Ronin is extremely rich, offering a challenging and exciting challenge. It is also very exciting because the desire to return to combat and advance in the adventure does not diminish with the passing of the hours of play.

A safe value

Therefore, it is clearly a safe value for players who really want to invest in a game and spend time there, to improve their character and perfect their combat techniques.

Only one reservation: if the game is very beautiful visually speakingWe could still expect better today from a game developed specifically for a next-generation Sony console.

Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5.
Rise of the Ronin launches this Friday, March 22, 2024 exclusively on PS5. (©Screenshot Actu.fr)

The graphics are well crafted and well rendered, but we are not in the contemplation that we feel, precisely in Ghost of Tsushima, to name just one.

Rise of the Ronin is close, at this level, to the games we could play at the end of PS4. Those who today want to make the most of it will make this criticism. Those who prioritize the gaming experience, with very shiny graphics, will be delighted devouring Rise of the Ronin.

We love :

  • The samurai universe, we never get tired of it
  • We find the atmosphere of Ghost of Tsushima, but again it is something else.
  • Very well produced and controlled combat sequences.
  • Fortunately several levels of difficulty possible.
  • A classic open world that delivers on all its promises
  • A main mission and secondary missions with good pacing.
  • Combat scenes glorifying successful executions.
  • Action and infiltration, to vary the pleasures.
  • The wide variety of weapons (swords, spears, bows, rifles, etc.)
  • The decisions to be made, sometimes very attractive!
  • Relationships to build with humans, but also with dogs and cats.
  • Item and character skill upgrades available
  • The duo fights other characters encountered in the story.

We like less:

  • If the graphics are beautiful and bright, we can clearly do better on PS5.
  • Dialogues: sometimes very long and repetitive in certain side missions.
  • The combat mechanics are laborious to assimilate, not necessarily intuitive. In particular, the change of weapons, which is not something natural.
  • This long, boring introduction, which some will probably find fantastic!

In conclusion :

We were looking forward to this first PS5 exclusive of 2024. The Rise of the Ronin He keeps almost all his promises. The adventure immersed in the skin of a samurai is exciting and captivating, the combat is very realistic.

The game is demanding and you will have to use gunpowder, sabers, potions and everything you can find at hand to defeat the toughest enemies you encounter along the way.

It’s a shame that the graphics aren’t still a little better to make the most of the PS5’s firepower and offer players a full dose of contemplation, as well as an extremely dense and exciting adventure.

Rise of the Ronin is an open-world action-adventure game developed by the Team Ninja studio and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment, exclusively for PlayStation 5. Released on March 22, 2024. Observed price: between 60 and 70 euros.

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