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Review: Xuan Yuan Sword 7 – A Huge Surprise Hit

A love letter to the original Xbox days of gaming.

These days, games get so bogged down in their ideas that they lose their central idea. Take Assassin’s Creed Valhalla for example. The game is fantastic but is accompanied by an extraordinary amount of filler, and the result is that the percentage of people who made it to the end is shockingly low. Sometimes we crave those linear experiences of the early Xbox days, where the adventure could be consumed in a weekend. Xuan Yuan Sword 7 has now travelled to the west aiming to bring back the gaming days of a bygone era and succeeds tremendously in its ambition.

The series’ attempt to capture a western audience feels akin to the Persona and Yakuza franchises, which were both massive in other territories before blowing up in the west in recent years. While Xuan Yuan Sword 7 perhaps doesn’t pack the polish and ambition of those titles, it oozes with so much charm that it’s hard not to fall in love with it. The best part? You don’t need any prior knowledge of the series to dive in here. The story follows Taishi Zhao on a personal story to protect his sister from powers against his control. It blends elements of other games such as God of War and The Last of Us, developing an emotional core that’s easy to latch on to.

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