Tokyo 42 Review: A New Perspective

Real Talk By: Haggy

In a futuristic Tokyo, where death has almost been cured and the Assassin’s business has never been so accepted or profitable, the player finds themselves embroiled in a plot for a crime they didn’t commit.  A murder someone didn’t come back from.  After a daring escape, the player and their friend must figure out which Assassin used them as the scapegoat.  Climb the food chain to find out who did it.

That’s only the tip of the iceberg to this weird and quirky game coming at us from SMAC Games and Mode 7.  In Tokyo 42, you’ll spend the game assassinating targets in a very artistic world.  Go in guns-blazing, or try stealth.  Taking a straightforward path or parkouring around trickier areas, you’re encouraged to take whatever path desired.  Is it any good however?  Well, let’s go through it.

Firstly, and most importantly, is the setting.  With the neon colors, retro EDM sound track, and the impressive visuals, the game looks great.  The world strongly portrays the weird and unique aesthetics in Tokyo 42, and honestly it looks pretty sweet.  It’s also a well populated, open world.  With plenty of details to give areas a lived in feel while also conveying the narrative of the world wherever you go.  There is a slight problem with all this though, but more on that further down.

Next, the game’s combat mechanics.  You’re an assassin hunting down marks until you find the assassin that made you an assassin, so naturally there’s bound to be an emphasis on combat.  Tragically, here’s where Tokyo 42 starts to falter as the control scheme is, for lack of a better term, difficult.  It’s partially clunky, but it’s only serving the game and is honestly probably the best they could’ve done in such an environment so again, it’s difficult.  That goes for both controllers and for Mouse and Keyboard, though the controller is slightly easier to navigate with, but the mouse and keyboard are easier to aim with.

However, combat and the general game play in Tokyo 42 is quite satisfying!  Weapons have a decent weight to them, and with all the terrain and fixtures of the world, people will be diving from cover to cover in some pretty nice looking gun fights.  Furthermore, with a stealth system surprisingly similar to some of the more recent Splinter Cell games, it’ll show you where the enemies last saw you so you can plan and try to bait them into a trap as you either fight like a shadow, or simply try and bury them in ordinance.

This is Until you can’t see where the enemies are, of course.  Tragically, the one massive flaw to Tokyo 42, and it is a pretty big one, is the Isometric view itself.  It leads to stunningly nice visuals and it also makes everything look like it’s a cartoon in a tilt-shift perspective.  The player even has camera controls to rotate the view as necessary, but right there is the issue.  When traversing the world, it sometimes feels like the puzzle game FEZ, with changing perspectives showing you where to go.  It’s not nearly as complicated of course, and when you’re just going around the world it’s not so bad.  But, when enemies are patrolling, looking, or shooting at you, it’s extremely easy to either get lost, or simply not see where they’re coming from. Otherwise, the world is well designed for an Open World game, giving you plenty of options to approach something.

Last but not least there is a multiplayer mode.  Similar to the nemesis system in single player.  Players try to find the assassins in the crowd.  The Hitmen will try to kill you, while attempting to complete the objective in an efficient manner.  Sounds good on-paper but in reality, it’s just alright. I found the most excitement is found in solo play.

The Story is adequate. Enemy AI is satisfactory.  Gun play is awesome. Tokyo 42’smworld is gorgeous. There are so many interesting and unique ideas in this that I can’t help but love it, despite the at-times horrible camera and iffy dialogue.


Tokyo 42 Gets

3.5 out of 5


What’s Legit?

+The World is Gorgeous and Especially Well Made

+The Game play is Satisfying

+There are More Unique Ideas Here Than You Can Imagine

+Great Use of Unity Engine

+Bosses are Difficult

What’s Perpetrating?

-The Isometric View That Makes Everything Pretty, Also Makes Things Difficult

-The Zoom is Sometimes Too Far

-Lacking Options Menu


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Review Copy provided by SMAC Games

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