Generally favorable reviews - based on 58 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 49 out of 58
  2. Negative: 1 out of 58
Buy On
  1. 91
    Like the legendary sword the game's named after, Muramasa easily cuts through all the unnecessary fluff and gives you just what you want: tons and tons of flashy sword action.
  2. The art of fun is in a safe place thanks to games like Muramasa: The Demon Blade. It's a little piece of art that nobody should miss.
  3. While it may not be the sharpest blade from the forge, Muramasa: The Demon Blade is still a finely crafted work of art.
  4. It's a surprisingly long game, since it offers two different storylines and endings with two different characters. There are also challenges scattered throughout, as well as an incredible amount of swords to forge or collect.
  5. 90
    Muramasa may not play quite as beautifully as it looks, but you can be confident in the knowledge that whizzing around slicing ninjas with a big katana is definitely as fun as it looks.
  6. The game is an amazing visual feast with some excellent gameplay which most gamers should at least try as if they don’t them may be passing on having a chance to experience something truly great.
  7. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is most certainly a unique experience with its beautifully hand drawn environments and visual perfection. If you're an action fan and you don't mind fairly repetitive gameplay, Muramasa is one of the most beautiful games you'll ever play.
  8. Muramasa is positioned as a compelling work and highlights a passion for Japanese culture.
  9. Muramasa symbolize the rebirth of a genre, and defends the bideimensional culture with an intriguing gameplay.
  10. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is will be remembered as one of the most unique and visually stunning Wii titles of 2009.
  11. Even in the face of some structural missteps, Muramasa is a visually stunning game that is entertaining in the heat of battle – though that heat eventually cools down due to short and shallow encounters. Without better pacing and a lot more depth, Muramasa isn’t fit to run with the top-tier action titles.
  12. But perhaps its best unrecognized feature is that it actually got a hardcore “gamer” like me to stop playing my Xbox 360 and pick up the Wii for the first time in months, possibly years, not just because it was my assignment, but because I wanted to. And I’m not sure I can give better praise than that.
  13. The best part about Muramasa, though, is the presentation. This Wii effort sports vivid hand-drawn animation, breathtaking locales and a memorable soundtrack. It's without question one of the better games you'll find on the Wii.
  14. It is a beautiful game that is a victim of its own success as the story so badly eclipses the gameplay. Muramasa is an imperfect jewel. It’s a precious stone for sure, but the cut’s not quite right.
  15. 90
    My only qualm with the demon was that he never really veered us off the beaten path, for the most part we were always trying to get from point A to point B; I would've loved to take in the sights more.
  16. On top of the unparalleled graphics that lovingly caress players' retinas from the second they load up the game, and enveloped within a traditional Japanese soundscape, Muramasa delivers steadily enjoyable gameplay from start to finish
  17. There’s no two ways about it, Muramasa: The Demon Blade is the most rewarding game to hit the Wii this year.
  18. Games Master UK
    One for those who like their games tough, terrific to look at and ever-so-slightly traditional. [Winter 2009, p.74]
  19. games(TM)
    In an age where choice of avatar often means nothing more than trivial personalisation, it's great to see a game like Muramasa come along and use that choice to offer twice as much game. [Dec 2009, p.124]
  20. Sure it has its problems, but it is a drop-dead gorgeous game and sometimes you're not looking for a rocket scientist; you're just looking for a good time.
  21. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is the state of the art for modern 2D graphics. Although it is a bit repetitive at times, it offers quite a few interesting gameplay solutions, alongside the possibility to play two different stories depending on which character you choose.
  22. This 2D hack-and-slash adventure lacks depth, but the striking backgrounds make it easy to get sucked into its world.
  23. Muramasa will stand out on Wii, shining as one more ray of inspiration to other developers who have passed on Wii for good.
  24. Muramasa is easy to pick up and play thanks to its simple control scheme, but offers enough depth and challenge to keep the action from getting stale. Combined with its amazing visuals, this is easily one of the better action titles on the platform.
  25. The best hack-n-slash side-scroller of the generation. Muramasa is a masterpiece from beginning to end.
  26. All together, if you own a Wii, you should definitely plan on picking up Muramasa: The Demon Blade. It's easily one of the best third party titles on the system, and it's certainly the best looking 2D game I've seen in quite some time.
  27. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is already destined to garner a cult following, and I feel it deserves better. This title should be embraced by all Wii owners, don't let this one pass you by.
  28. Muramasa is a good game with a few small flaws.
  29. For all it's got going for it, though, Muramasa's problem is that it simply overstays its welcome. This is a good 14-hour game, and the gameplay cannot support that kind of play time. I found myself wishing that the game was about half the length it is, which would've left me satisfied, rather than fully exhausted.
  30. 89
    As much a piece of art as it is a game, and it’s that true cohesive nature that will keep players pushing further and further along. The gameplay isn’t always the deepest experience in either the action or RPG genres – two buttons, blades, and a whole lot of killing –but the game’s inherent action mechanic is fun, fast, and addicting, and there always seems to be something new around the next corner; visually, gameplay, or otherwise.
  31. Muramasa: The Demon Blade's a piece of art, or art by itself. It's a simple beat 'em up that's set on the early Japanese history, mainly focused on the personal story of two wanderers that're trying to earn a living smashing every enemy that's set on their way. It's one of the most interesting games for this console, lacking an in-depth story, but still a very joyful one.
  32. Even with all its flaws in terms of pace, exploration and level design, Muramasa remains a brilliant example of 2D action game. It's not just a nostalgic commemoration, but a good piece of classic gameplay brought up to date by a wonderfully crafted product.
  33. Ultimately, the game has a lot to offer actual gamers. While it sometimes feels like more of a quality WiiWare/PSN/Live Arcade game, I encourage you to pick it up.
  34. Nintendo Gamer
    Expect the depth of an RPG and you may be disappointed, but for latent ninjas this blisteringly quick and beautiful action title will be like manna from heaven. [JPN Import; July 2009, p.64]
  35. While it may have some niggles with backtracking, lame endings and button-mashing combat that hold it back, overall the game is as engrossing as they come and certainly one worth investing a chunk of time into.
  36. Nintendo Power
    You've-got-to-see-it-to-believe-it graphics certainly don't hurt. [Oct 2009, p.88]
  37. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is a game of the highest quality. While there are a few minor complaints to be made against the game, they really are minor and easily overlooked.
  38. Repetition is just about kept at bay by delicious artiness and deeply involving combat. [Dec 2009, p.80]
  39. Pelit (Finland)
    A simple hack slash RPG with a lot of repetition. Still - the action is fairly addictive and the beautiful 2D art creates a charming atmosphere. [Dec 2009]
  40. Other than Princess Crown and Odin Sphere (which were equally superior in their time), Muramasa defies comparison. The art and animation throughout is so refined it almost seems unfair, the gameplay is intuitive and never grows old; the RPG elements are unique and superbly presented and the score is simply mesmerizing.
  41. 86
    Muramasa is a fun game, but it's not for everyone. If you are bothered by minimal story, repetitive fighting, and a fairly short length, then it's not for you. For all other action RPG fans, Muramasa succeeds in delivering pure fun factor that's addicting and highly accessible with excellent aesthetics to complement it.
  42. 80
    However, don't go into Muramasa expecting an impressive story. For gamers that want an experience full of beautiful scenery and engaging gameplay, Muramasa will provide just that.
  43. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is a great 2D action game. Unique and amazing Japanese style makes the game a truly beauty to play. Too much backtracking and a lack of variety in the gameplay are two unforgivable missteps. Luckily there are over one hundred swords to forge and two different stories to play.
  44. If there was ever a game that deserved to be played, Muramasa is it.
  45. 92
    Action, exploration and Japanese tradition made art in your screen.
  46. Muramasa: The Demon Blade is a gaming experience that must be played regardless of your console preference.
  47. 82
    Muramasa: The Demon Blade is an awful nice and beautiful game. Unfortunately there's a lack of English voices, a multiplayer mode and sometimes there are long trips. But still we want more of these games!
  48. Muramasa is a jaw dropping experience. Smooth play control and an awesome score really help compliment what is the best looking game of the year. With a great balance between easy and hard difficulties that can be switched on the fly, Muramasa is a game that deserves to be in every Wii owners system. Do not let this beautiful game pass you up.
  49. 88
    Muramasa: The Demon Blade is another example of a developer that truly takes pride in what they do. The sheer visual enjoyment you can take away from this experience is endless, making this one of the best looking game this generation.

Awards & Rankings

#14 Most Discussed Wii Game of 2009
#36 Most Shared Wii Game of 2009
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 123 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 96 out of 123
  2. Negative: 10 out of 123
  1. RomanP
    Oct 30, 2009
    Best 2D hack and slash game in a decade. Beautiful graphics. This is the best game on the Wii.
  2. Feb 12, 2011
    Muramasa: The Demon Blade is an excellent wii game that will captivate. The graphics of course are the best part, with everything beingMuramasa: The Demon Blade is an excellent wii game that will captivate. The graphics of course are the best part, with everything being beautiful hand drawn pictures for sprites and backgrounds. The combat is quick and beautiful, and you've an abundance of blades to use throughout the game, each with different abilites. The music is extremely beautiful, and fit perfectly with the mood of the game (You'll be humming them every now and then). The voice acting is of course excellent. The storyline is enjoyable and the cutscenes are embracing. Full Review »
  3. BobbyJ
    Jan 5, 2010
    Maybe it's because I'm from a generation of low graphics but, depth is more important and this game is definitely lacking in it. If Maybe it's because I'm from a generation of low graphics but, depth is more important and this game is definitely lacking in it. If it wasn't for software return policies I would be taking this back pronto. Full Review »