For those who like fighting games but wished there’d be a few more pointy bits in them, then you might want to take a gander at SNK’s Samurai Shodown. Shodown keeps it relatively simple and embodies a “back-to-basics” approach to combat, which is to say that there won’t be any super-fancy 35-hit juggle combos and suchlike here - you’ll still get to play the game even if your opponent catches you off guard with a well-timed punch.
Samurai Shodown’s narrative takes place sometime during Japan’s Tenmei era (circa 1787), which is between the events of the 1993 game and Samurai Shodown V. Insert your typical “world on the brink of destruction” theme here.
With most of the land ravaged by fire, famine, and ruin, the situation in Japan is already dire enough at it is, but an even greater evil in the form of Shizuka Gozen, a deceased young lady whose spirit is trapped in Yomi (or Eternity, as the game calls it), looms on the horizon, threatening to destroy the world in its entirety. So, as the various characters make their way across the land fuelled by their own curiosities and desires, they’ll eventually come face to face with Shizuka herself, with the fate of the world resting in their hands.
Yes, the plot is as cliché as they come, so on to the gameplay. My initial impression of Shodown’s combat was pretty good.
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