Stranger of Sword City Revisited review for PS Vita

Platform: PS Vita
Publisher: Experience Inc.
Developer: Experience Inc.
Medium: Digital/Vita Card
Players: 1
Online: No

I honestly can’t figure out why Stranger of Sword City Revisited exists.

I’m not saying that it’s a bad game. I’m not trying to insult the hard work that the folks at Experience Inc. did in making it. I’m not even suggesting that it’s inconceivable anyone could enjoy it. I’m just saying that, as far as I’m concerned, it just might be the most inessential game ever.

Consider what it is, after all: a slight expanded version a mediocre dungeon crawler that came out roughly a year ago. You can check out the changes for yourself right here, but none of them seem so important that they necessitate the creation of Stranger of Sword City Revisited. I mean, I guess if you’re selling yourself as a dungeon crawler, the allure of even more dungeons is kind of a selling point, but why not just hold on to them for a sequel?

Admittedly, there’s a little more to Stranger of Sword City Revisited than a few new dungeons. There are new character classes, for one thing. There’s also a “Guard Counter”, that, true to its name, allows you to counterattack while defending. Similarly, the “Slaying Challenge” adds a twist to the usual “Defeat Monster X to get this item” by putting restrictions on how and when you can obtain certain rare items. Again, though, none of these changes represent much more than minor tweaks to the original, and seem like they could’ve been held off for a full-blown sequel.

Which means, ultimately, that I get back to why I’m not sure Stranger of Sword City Revisited exists. There’s not enough here to justify playing it if you’ve already played the original, and if you didn’t play that first game because you’re not a fan of dungeon crawlers, nothing here is going to change your mind. The art style is still exceptionally good, and it reflects the tone of a game that’s surprisingly mature in a contemplative, non-skeezy way. Overall, though, this very much represents an incremental upgrade — rather than a major step forward — over the Stranger of Sword City, and it should be received as such.

Grade: C