Hold on, is Capcom pulling a Brutal Legend with its new action game?

Capcom's latest trailer for Kunitsu-Gami: Path of the Goddess, included in Wednesday's Xbox showcase, started how I expected. The character, creature and environmental designs are all pulling heavily from Japanese mythology, as we've seen in previous teasers for the game. There's some third person action reminiscent of Capcom classic Onimusha. But then the surprises start hitting: there are villagers to recruit and deploy in combat, spots on the map to "purge of defilement" to collect resources, zooming the camera out to building defensive structures, then fighting off waves of enemies… 

Is it just me, or did Capcom just backdoor an RTS into what we all thought was an action game? 

The last game I remember pulling this trick was Double Fine's Brutal Legend, which started out as a metal-themed action adventure before sneakily dropping you into larger scale battles with the ability to construct buildings and order troops around. Capcom's description for Kunitu-Gami on YouTube sounds like it's doing something quite similar: 

"Purge the defilement by day as you strategize and prepare before sunset. When night falls, battle with unique dance-like sword attacks and command villagers in this one-of-a-kind blend of intense action and real-time strategy."

From the trailer, it's hard to tell if the structure here is explicitly tower defense, but the yokai enemies do seem to be spawning from a specific spot and you can definitely build defenses. That seems pretty tower defensey to me. But the focus seems like it may lean more towards commanding your villagers on the front lines of the battle than on building. Either way, even if Brutal Legend did it first, it's not a blend we've seen often.

Kunitsu-Gami is out this year, and Capcom will be showing off more of it during a livestream on Thursday, March 7.

Wes Fenlon
Senior Editor

Wes has been covering games and hardware for more than 10 years, first at tech sites like The Wirecutter and Tested before joining the PC Gamer team in 2014. Wes plays a little bit of everything, but he'll always jump at the chance to cover emulation and Japanese games.

When he's not obsessively optimizing and re-optimizing a tangle of conveyor belts in Satisfactory (it's really becoming a problem), he's probably playing a 20-year-old Final Fantasy or some opaque ASCII roguelike. With a focus on writing and editing features, he seeks out personal stories and in-depth histories from the corners of PC gaming and its niche communities. 50% pizza by volume (deep dish, to be specific).