PSX Mania – 047 – Battle Arena Toshinden 2 (1996)

Completion time: 42:10

We went from one abysmal fighting game in X-Men Mutant Academy 2, right on to another abysmal part two of a fighting game – Battle Arena Toshinden 2. The original was an early release for the console, and honestly, I enjoyed it more than Tekken. It had its quirks, but it was competent enough to stand on its own and be a decent playthrough. Its sequel though, it takes two steps forward and then two steps back.

The problem lays in how incredibly stiff and rigid the controls were. The original wasn’t a marvel with its controls, but it didn’t feel like a stick in the mud. It made pulling off Eiji’s uppercut move a chore, so much so that maybe 15% of the time I attempted it, the attack would come out. The AI is a frustrating mess as well.

The one thing that both games share though is a killer soundtrack. That’s really Battle Arena Toshinden‘s saving grace – a soundtrack that made the pain more tolerable. We still have one more to go in regards to North American releases (there’s a 4th title I believe as JP/PAL exclusive), and if it’s anything like this, then I’m dreading the day we reach it. Go for the original Toshinden and forget that there’s a second.

Rating: 4

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