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January 22 2019

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  Samurai Spirits RPG - İSNK 1997 (Neo Geo CD)

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Game Stats
1 player

Japanese Name:

Samurai Spirits RPG

Reviewed By:
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What's it about::

SSRPG is a difficult one to review since there's no other Neo Geo games to compare it to. It reminds you of the better-end SNES RPGs, except with more art and of course, CD music. It's surprising how well the characters from the original Samurai Spirits arcade slashers work in a totally different game. The game itself even has two scenarios, which while not being that long, are pretty well done and feature the stories of Samurai Spirits 1 and 2. To put it short, Bushidou Retsuden is your typical 16-bit console RPG with exceptional graphics, better music and characters from the coolest slash 'em up I know of.

Gameplay 8/10:

Nothing to complain about here, except the loading times. Having to crawl through the same dungeon again for the third time, the unavoidable battle scenes with their loading times really start to annoy you. The game itself is quite easy, and the difficulty factor is based entirely on your habits of (not) leveling up. Sometimes you hardly seem to do any damage to a boss, but after leveling up for a while the very same boss gets sliced in half with a few cuts. Control-wise the game plays perfect and as a nice bonus, you are presented with a choice of "Command"- or "Select"-type battle interface. This choice affects the way how special techniques are pulled off, in Select mode you just choose the waza/jutsu and it is thrown, but in Command mode you need to pull off a certain motion with the joystick just like in the arcades to have the character use the technique. There's no secret waza to the Command mode so this only affects difficulty, though.

The battles themselves are just the same as any Final Fantasy, but with far more animation and movement. Anyone who's played a console RPG before feels right at home with Bushidou Retsuden. Before selecting which of the two scenarios to start playing, you to choose your main character from Cham Cham, Galford, Genjuro, Haohmaru, Nakoruru and Ukyo. In Amakusa's scenario (the first and easier one) you get two other freely selectable characters from a cast of characters including for example Rimururu and Charlotte. In Miduki's scenario you get one other character plus a preselected scenario-related character. Both of them are (surprise, surprise) variations of the "prevent-evil-from-taking-over-the-world"-setting but since it's such a good game and has a great atmosphere, the stories fit right in.

Graphics 9/10:

Excellent animation and sprites here. The intro even has some really cool CG art too. Personally, I love the way all the monsters and such look really hellish. There's all sorts of spider-demon-people and twisted hellspawns. Even your regular rogues look murderous (how many people do you know with gigantic mecha-scythe arms?). The sprite animation in the battle scenes is fast and there's usually a lot of people slicing and crushing each other with all sorts of harmful objects so what could be wrong? If you've seen Final Fantasy, you already know what the battles look like. Belonging to the 18th century Japan, the setting has a really cool oriental feel to the graphics. The backgrounds don't really make you say "Wow!" but there's nothing to complain about here either.

Sound & Music (8 / 10):

The music is either just oriental string and drum stuff or chapel music with a beat to it. Most of the songs have a tune to them that reminds you of a funeral. Fits into the game like a finger in your nose, and isn't definitely the kinda stuff Nintendo had in their games. The only negative thing is that some of these songs really sound too simple. What can I say here, it does it's purpose well.

Overall (8 / 10):

This game rocks. All-in-all it's a kickass RPG that deserves your attention if you're interested at all in console roleplay. The loading times and the lack of special features each and every game needs to compete with others of it's genre are the only real cons. As each RPG has something that supposedly makes it "unique" in the console RPG world (Rudra has it's magic system, SD3 has class changing etc.), SSRPG has a nice weapon power-and level-up thingy. As you gain experience you can have more levels forged in your weapon too which makes it a tougher one and you can also change the elemental attribute of each character's attack. Well, enough with this. Get the game yourself and play it!

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