So, it turns out that the Devil has another daughter. Shocker, but it seems he has a penchant for sleeping around. The second girl, Velgyrie, haunts our nightmares with traps and death – but who can blame her with a name like Velgyrie? Thankfully, a handy robotic companion is on hand to teach her how to most efficiently murder people in their sleep. It may have a story that even Mel Gibson wouldn't touch, but the gameplay in Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess is more of the same devilish fun.
Unlike the original game – which is included in full for anybody that missed it on the PlayStation 3 and Vita – Velgyrie's story unfolds across a massive quest tree. Levels are presented in bite-sized chunks, with a goal for each. Most of the time it just involves using traps and combos to kill everybody that you come across, but occasionally you have to score a certain amount of points or complete some other strangely specific task.
Like past games in the franchise, you strategically set myriad insane and painful traps throughout a room, unleashing them on innocent strangers and heroes. At its best, this is brutally good fun. Watching an intricate chain of murder tools play out perfectly is incredibly satisfying, especially if you've worked hard on it. On the other hand, you can finish most levels using the same two or three weapons, only you'll be bored throughout. It's a game, and franchise, that relies on you to make your own entertainment with the tools on offer.
Unlocking new weapons is as easy as completing optional objectives across each quest. There are three on each, tasking you with using specific environmental weapons, scoring a certain amount of points, or getting a number of combos. It's not always easy, but this is where most of the fun lies.
Each human has his or her own backstory, so you can really get to know your victims before you mutilate them. Some people would call that psychopathic, but Koei just calls it an awesome feature. It really does add a sense of continuity to an otherwise open story structure, and seeing the friend of someone you killed come to avenge them gives an unprecedented depth to an otherwise faceless duo of enemies.
In addition to new traps, Velgyrie also has the amazing ability to bash her opponents with her foot. Normally calling that a kick would have been enough, but the game makes a big deal out of this skill, as it allows you to knock opponents one square backwards, offering freedom like you've never experienced before.
The port to the PlayStation 4 has been quite successful. Everything loads quickly and there are no major performance issues, regardless of what's happening on-screen. With that said, it's hardly the visual tour-de-force that the console is capable of; it looks better than the Vita version, but it would have been a major disappointment if it didn't.
As well as the full main game, there's the option to create your own quests, or play the quests of others. This isn't nearly as slick as something like LittleBigPlanet, which streams the data. Instead, you have to actively download the quest. It's not nearly as all-encompassing as other user-content titles either, in that you mostly just set the rules and the characters that will appear – there's no direct editing.
Still, there's absolutely loads to get through, as there are 100 quests available as part of the additional content, and then the main story as well. If you're a fan of fiendishly injuring people with big blades, there could be dozens of hours of content here. For those that played the original, the Trophies are all linked to the new content, so you'll be able to completely avoid going back over old ground if you choose to double dip.
If epic stories are your thing, then you probably won't get much enjoyment out of Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess. But the point of the game is its murderous sandbox, and things have only improved in that regard since the original outing was released. Go mad – that's kind of the point – and slash up some do-good knights and confused Satan worshippers. After all, it's what Daddy would want.