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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Samurai Shodown (NEO4ALL) Review

Original release:
August 11, 1993

Game details:
1-2 Players
Standard controller
VGA box

The following game was not officially released for the Sega Dreamcast. It is emulated sing NEO4ALL RC-3 developed by chui. This is an evaluation of the emulation of the game, as well as the game itself.

Using Team RDC's release you can play this game as though it is a commercial game with only a brief loading screen.

Samurai Shodown, also known as Samurai Spirits was, from the beginning, a real arcade game. It was later ported over to the Neo Geo home console. There is no slowdown at all when playing which is important for an arcade game and especially a fighting game. It's a real joy to play!

This is an amazingly fun fighting game. The characters uses cool weapons and some of them have animals that can help them in combat. The special attacks looks really good and there are a lot of them. The game also features critical hit attacks. They take more damage and it almost freezes the game to really show how hard the strike is. Samurai Shodown was one of the first fighting games to include weapons. The characters are a little unbalanced; characters that have animals with them are generally stronger. The character I hate the most is Gafford. He has a dog as his companion. While Gafford's regular special attacks are very annoying and deal a great amount of damage, his dog leaps forward and deals damage if he hits you. It took a couple of tries to beat him but, after I figured out the special attacks and what strategy to use, I took him down!
Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of characters to choose from. But when you find your favorite character, you won't be likely to play another after you've beaten all the characters with your favorite.

There is a delivery man in the background who sometimes throw chickens that heals and bombs that deal damage. The camera zoom is also very helpful when the characters are far away from each other. Although, this isn't like a regular fighting game. It's not as fast paced as other fighting games like Street Fighter. It focuses more on powerful strikes and special attacks which makes it harder to perform combos. I personally prefer this kind of fighting games. I like to do a special attack and then cut the opponent into pieces meanwhile he's falling to the ground, instead of pulling off a 7-hit combo.

No story is presented in the game. But it seems like it's taken place in old Japan. The main character is Haohmaru.

The graphics are very detailed. The different stages look great and the audiences are very well animated. The cool thing is that you can lose your weapon, which fly high up in the air and then lands on the ground. You can then pick the weapon up when you walk by it. There are also certain objects that you can break. For instance, there is a couple of crates placed at the sides in the stage and when you attack by the crates, the top slides right off and apples come out. The characters and the animals look great.

As the game features weapons, it also features a lot of gore. When you attack, blood will fly and when you finish off a character, blood comes pouring out. The death animations are different for each characters. You can also perform a fatal attack that slices the character in half. The blood and fatal attacks are not included in the North American version.

Finally a fighting game with great music! The stages features old Japanese music which sets the mood very well. You can easily figure out that this is game takes place in Japan because of the music. I would say that the music is one of the main highlights of the game.

In my experience, this is one of the best fighting games that you can find in the Neo Geo library. It has very detailed graphics and amazing music. Don't miss out on this game if you're a fan of fighting games! Even the music alone makes this game worth a try.



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