Samurai Shodown III: Blades of Blood

Samurai Shodown III: Blades of Blood

It's safe to say that "A Precise Arcade Translation / Nearly Flawless Translation" quote on a PlayStation game case is a bad sign...

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Genre:
One on One Fighting
CDs: 1
(?? Megs)
Players:
1 to 2 Players
ESRB: Teen
Animated Blood
Animated Violence
Publisher:
SNK
Retail Barcode:
7 11719 42062 0
Memory:
1 Block
Developer:
SNK
Sony ID:
SCUS-94206
Accessories:
None
Released:
November 2, 1996
PSRM:
004860

Only winners live; losers must deliver their own fatal punishment!

An endless sea of blood floods the realm as the demonic Zankuro slashes a path of grisly terror! But even Zankuro can’t be everywhere. Some say fate lent a hand when a dozen infants escaped the slaughter! Now, years later, 12 revenge-driven samurai begin their violent quest… for the head of Zankuro! 

  • A nearly flawless translation of the huge arcade #1 game of the year!
  • Play all 12 deadly samurai! Fight as the monk, wanderer, American ninja, executioner, snow maiden, aesthetic perfectionist, and more!
  • Packed with fantastic Japanese anime and phenomenal moves including 24 different attack modes and 96 special moves and full power attacks.
  • NEW – DOUBLE IDENTITIES! All warriors have two separate “moods” that determinate their moves.  Will you use Chivalry or Treachery to attack Zankuro?!  New Rage Gauge and POWer Gauge intensify every slash and thrust!

 

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Trivia

  • That whole “Nearly Flawless” comment on the back can go take a hike. Here’s a condensed list of what’s different / missing from the PSX Version:
  • Characters have no animation on Selection Screen. Once chosen, their over-sized image does not show up.
  • In-game animations have been cut to about a third. Sony of America sped up the game play to try and even out the difference.
  • In the Japanese version, a Fierce Slash could grind the game to a halt
  • The resolution has been severely dropped. I played both the Arcade and the PSX version on S-Video, and the difference was staggering.
  • Zooming in / out gets extremely jerky with any flashy, larger move.
  • Gaira has the most animation removed due to his size. His standing animation barely animates.
  • Oddly enough, the load time is a tad better on the US side.
  • Weird change – in the original Arcade, Ukyo’s stage fog moves as if it were a single entity. In the PSX version, it almost animates a tad more, perhaps due to the resolution issues. Hard to explain in text form.
  • Despite all that, there doesn’t seem to be any loss in actual on-screen imagery. Foreground objects, background animations, etc all seemed present.
  • Apparently the SCEA employee Chad Okada is THE GAME LORD…or at least that’s what the credits have you believe.
  • Despite it’s poor conversion, the original Neo Geo version is still one of the more astonishing games, at least from an animation standpoint. Each character had with-and-without-weapon animations, extra moves per style, multi-scene changing backgrounds, and some decently sized sprites. Just the fact that they got what they could into 1 meg of RAM is impressive.
  • Was also available on the Sega Saturn with the 1 Meg Ram Cartridge.
  • Inside the instruction manual was an ad for King of Fighters ’95 and Real Bout Fatal Fury. RB:FF was never released in America.
  • Despite only getting the third Samurai Shodown 2D game and the 2nd 3D game (Warrior’s Rage), the Japanese PlayStation got the original four 2D games (3, 4, and then a compilation of 1 & 2), and console exclusive RPG.
  • The referee makes an odd appearance by becoming you as an opponent. In SS2, you could actually play as him.
  • The US Packaging was obviously done by someone who played the Japanese version and knew about the conversion process. The copy writer correctly lists the alternate colors as Chivalry and Treachery, rather than the depressing US Arcade Bust / Slash monikers.
  • One of the first times an American packaging listed ‘anime’ style  (Japanese Animation) as a feature – a phrase that wouldn’t truly be accepted by US mainstream audiences until the PlayStation 2 era.