E3 2011: Asura's Wrath Hands-On Preview

By Shawn Collier on June 26, 2011, 10:21PM EDT

When Capcom announced Asura's Wrath at their annual Captivate event this April, many were left wondering exactly what kind of game it was and why the main protagonist Asura seemed so angry in the game's initial teaser trailer. After getting some hands-on time with the title during E3 2011, we've learned the answers to both questions --- and let's just say that fans of games such as God of War will feel right at home here.

Asura's Wrath revolves around the main character Asura, a demigod who has been kicked out of their group for some unknown and unexplained reason and has been cast down to Earth and was sealed away. When he comes to he has no memory of the past and learns that his daughter has been kidnapped and forced to use her powers to power-up his former peers. Adding to this is the fact that nearly everyone Asura runs into is hell-bent on killing him. Needless to say, Asura's reawakening is turning out to be a nightmare.

E3 2011: Asura's Wrath Hands-On Preview

Our demo showcased Asura's battle with Wyzen, one of his former demigod companions. After brawling it out with Wyzen the game switched immediately to a cutscene where Wyzen taunted Asura and stated that his daughter's kidnapping and suffering was caused by Asura's sins, which only served to enrage Asura. And speaking of the cutscenes, the switch between the in-game and pre-rendered scenes were pretty impressive and didn't have that transition effect that many other games in the genre have, making it easily one of the most impressive features of the game so far.

Of course, Asura wasn't going to take that smack-talk lying down, so he whipped out an extra four arms which became incredibly useful as he chased Wyzen's battleship which was firing off missiles left and right at him. The actual catching and throwing of the missiles was done via action commands by pressing the corresponding face button as it appeared on the screen. While most players accustomed to the genre might think of these are mere glorified quick-time events, Asura's Wrath utilized dynamic camera angles alongside the input prompts so the action feels more fluid than scripted. Capcom wasn't ready to state how much control players will have over the fluidity but it's definitely a nice and welcome touch.

E3 2011: Asura's Wrath Hands-On Preview (2)

Those quick-time events came to a head once Asura returned enough missiles back when he entered his "burst mode", which changed to a more dynamic sequence in which Asura was able to toss the massive Wyzen clear into outer space. It's completely unrealistic, obviously, but in Wrath's over-the-top premise it didn't feel as out of place as one would imagine. To top things off, shortly after Wyzen grows to a colossal since in which he becomes bigger than the Earth itself and tries to flatten Asura with just his finger. After a quick cutscene when all hope seems lost, Asura is able to deliver a flurry of punches that sends a shockwave so powerful up Wyzen's body that he literally bursts into pieces.

According to the developers, which includes CyberConnect2, the developers most known for their Ultimate Ninja Storm series of Naruto games, this is just one of the many bosses that will be available to fight in the final version of the game, so we can't even begin to imagine how Capcom will be able to top the fight we were able to witness in the demo. Asura's Wrath is set for a release sometime in 2012 on the PS3 and Xbox 360.

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