The Project X Zone 2 demo is immediately available for Nintendo 3DS owners. People familiar with strategic RPGs will find themselves right at home. It’s a rather standard affair for the most part, with units appearing on the field grid, able to move a certain number of spaces each turn and attack within a specific range. Positioning is important, as attacks from the sides or back are more effective. However, the demo does a good job of showcasing what’s unique about this particular game as it takes people through the prologue, second, and third chapters.
Project X Zone 2 begins with Reiji and Xiaomu, two Shinra agents, waiting on Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine, from both Resident Evil, as well as Dr. Urashima, an original character. Monsters appear, of course. They’re unknown and unfamiliar, and the first tutorial battle has the duo fight four enemies. This fight is more about learning about positioning and how the battle system works than actually challenging you. The battle system here is more active, though still allowing turns, as a player’s button inputs determine which attack and special attacks are used by the single character or pair. If a unit is attacked, a player can choose to counter, fully defend, defend, or do nothing.
After the first battle, Dr. Urashima arrives. Players get an opportunity to save at the end of every chapter. They can then participate in training, shop from Dr. Urashima, check on their characters, and prepare for battles. From there, they had into ensuing story chapters. The Shop, Customize, and Training options are all available in the demo.
The Project X Zone 2 demo then skips to the game’s second chapter so it can better show people what sorts of crossovers appear. It’s set in Kamurocho, the city featured in all Yakuza games. In this second chapter, Reiji, Xiaomu, Chris, and Jill meet up with Phoenix Wright and Maya Fey from Ace Attorney, Heihachi Mishimi from Tekken, and Kazuma Kiryu and Goro Majima from Yakuza. Phoenix and Maya don’t stick around as playable characters in the demo, but Kazuma and Goro act as an additional paired unit with Heihachi linked with them. People get to use the three units to clear the city of zombies.
This is followed by the third chapter, in which players see Phoenix and Maya stumble into Makai, happening upon Darkstalkers‘ Morrigan and Demitri as they’re about to fight over who should rule the demon world. It also happens to be the exact place where Tekken‘s Jin Kazama and Kazuya Mishima meet up with Heihachi again, but find themselves surrounded by Darkstalkers‘ Q-Bees and forced to fight alongside one another. If that weren’t enough to deal with, B.B. Hood shows up with even more monsters as a villain. Another battle ensues, with Reiji, Xiaomu, Chris, Jill, Kazuma, Goro, Heihachi, Jin, Kazuya, Phoenix, Maya, Demitri, and Morrigan as playable characters.
The Project X Zone 2 demo is immediately available in the Nintendo 3DS eShop. It requires 1,602 blocks of memory and can be played 30 times. It will be released in North America on February 16, 2016, and in Europe on February 12. If you beat the demo, your save data in it will unlock a bonus in the full version of the game. Clearing it once gets you the Lesser New World item, beating it twice gives a Urashima’s Special Anniversary Badge, and three times results in a Urashima Special Wooden Sword. The fourth and fifth clears both give 1,000 gold each. You can clear it up to 10 times to get additional items that carry over to the full game.