'Nioh's Stance System Was a Fantastic Evolution for Soulslike Games

A whole new way to swing your swords.

It isn’t a stretch to say that Dark Souls has had a massive impact on the current gaming landscape. Once a vague spiritual successor to Demon's Souls, the title has given birth to its very own genre: Soulslike. And while there have been some notable standouts, there are a number of games that merely adopt the mechanics of Dark Souls without ever evolving them past the core concepts. Slap on a stamina meter, some heavy-hitting enemies with limited player healing, and you can call your game a Soulslike. And while this type of gameplay can be adapted into alternate settings from the medieval aesthetic of Dark Souls for a novel experience, there are few Soulslikes that feel like a true evolution of the genre from a combat perspective. However, there is one game that takes the core tenets of Dark Souls’ combat and manages to genuinely innovate in a way that feels simultaneously familiar as well as unique. That game is Nioh, and the way it achieves this is deceptively simple.

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