Way of the Samurai Series

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Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Zhuanyong » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:29 pm

I was wondering if anyone else here has played this series. I have found that the demographics for fans of this series vary so I would like to know who on SoSZ has also enjoyed this series. I’ll give some information about the series below. If anyone would like to add please feel free to do so.
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Way of the Samurai or Samurai Dou, is a little known (in some circles) action game series based on different periods of Japan’s history when the samurai were utilized – the game also features ninjas.

To start off, the series features a variety of different endings for each. All hinged on how you decide to participate in the events unfolding in the towns you go throughout during the game. You can join different factions within the towns you venture through and this will also determine your ending. And you can also kill key figures in the game and shape the outcome of the storyline and or even make yourself leader of a faction – I only saw this sort of event happen in Way of the Samurai 3.

When playing each play through you can select a different face and body for your character. You can also enter their name. You unlock different face models and body models through playing the game. There are both male and female models. In 3, you can also play as any character that you ‘knocked out’ with a blunt attack using a reverse blade attack.

The games feature a large list and variety of weapons i.e. katanas, dual katanas (in older installments), ninjato, spears, claws, blacksmith tools, and goofy weapons i.e. tuna, hoes, & brooms. With the creation of Way of the Samurai 3, the game introduced the ability to dual-wield any two swords (katana or ninja) you choose. The 3rd edition also introduced a system in which you could switch weapons seamlessly during battle (you can’t string combos with separate weapons however).

It also introduced the ability to make your own weapons (sword or spear) using parts you obtain by purchase or dropped by your dead opponents. You can also title any weapon to your liking in all the games.

The combat changed from installment to installment. In 1, there was the push and pull system in which you could pound your foe however if they parry you correctly you will be fully open. In 2, there was a system (which most hated) that allowed you to guess whether your opponent was using a vertical or horizontal attack and then correspond with a parry leading to an instant death strike (not on boss characters though). In 3, the push and pull system returned with tweaks. You could also spare opponent by reversing your blade and simply knocking them out. There was also the introduction of the chain kill system in which you could string anywhere from 1-100 consecutive one blow kills. You would simply have to press the controller button that flashes across the screen.

Way of the Samurai 3 actually has 22 endings which far exceed many of the predecessors and you can also recruit certain travelers or villagers to be your partner. Some of the partners will become your mate while others will just look at you as a big brother or sister. This depends on the partner – and you get the options to allow one partner to live with you if you build up a true relationship with them - which is rather easy.

Way of the Samurai 1 I never played it actually… But some consider it the best of the series.

Way of the Samurai 2 was set during the end of the Sengoku Era in which foreigners were all over Japan and you can see that through the European travelers walking about.

Way of the Samurai 3 is set during the beginning of the series of events that led to Tokugawa gaining power. The game is set when Nobunaga was going from province to province defeating daimyos.

Way of the Samurai 4 looks to be going in the direction of 2 with the period in Japan when the use of the samurai was almost extinguished. (Release date is in 2011 in Japan)
My favorite game of the series is 3 because of the weapons creation ability and the main ending is better than the endings in 2.

Does anyone else have any feedback on this series?

Like it? Hate it? Looking forward to the release of Way of the Samurai 4?
Last edited by Zhuanyong on Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Way of the Samurai series

Unread postby TheGreatNads » Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:41 pm

I played the first one years ago, and enjoyed it alright. I remember thinking it was surprisingly short, but had a good time otherwise and played through it more than once. I never tried to see all the endings or anything like that but at the time I was impressed by the choose your own adventure structure. I have heard in the 2nd one you can kill just about every other person in the game. I tend to like it when games appeal to the mischievous side of me, so I'm sure I'll give this series another shot before long. There's also the spin-off Samurai Western that's supposed to be more combat oriented and is set in the American West.

I'm glad you summarized the games of the series here, I never knew about any of the differences between each entry or that 3 had a weapon creation system.
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Zhuanyong » Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:28 pm

Actually, in 2 you cannot kill every single character. Because some characters are unavailable at certain points or do not appear until the very end of the game. In 3, you can kill everyone in the game except for children and animals.

One of the Endings
There is even an ending in which you get the title - 'Legend of the Demon' if you kill everyone.


In 3, the weapon creation is a bit limited to parts from the swords & spears already in-game. However, you can for example create a 'ninja stance' weapon that is made with nodachi parts giving for lightning fast attacks with a nodachi/long katana. Honestly, I almost did that but the game would be waaay too easy.

The Instant Kill mode is probably the best part of the game in replayability other than multiple endings. You can die from the slightest blow from the weakest foe. I know this is available in Way of the Samurai 2 and 3 but, I'm not sure if 1 features this mode.

I may post some Youtube videos of my game exploits if I get a chance.

EDIT: I forgot to mention, thanks also for mentioning Samurai Western as I totally forgot about it. It is a game that is based on what the title implies - samurai in the wild west. I didn't hear too many raving reviews over it though.
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Jordan » Fri Dec 03, 2010 12:26 pm

I enjoyed the first game but I only rented it.

I liked trying to go for the different endings, but the endings in the first game were hilarious in the sense that no matter what you did, you almost always got a BAD END. The government forces destroyed your resistance virtually no matter what.

One of my favorite things in the first game was to be a complete and total asshole. I actually usually go with "good guy" in games that offer you a choice, but being an asshole in Way of the Samurai was so rewarding and fun. I think I should probably check out 3 just to try for that Legend of the Demon thing you mentioned.
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Zhuanyong » Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:56 pm

SlickSlicer wrote:One of my favorite things in the first game was to be a complete and total asshole. I actually usually go with "good guy" in games that offer you a choice, but being an asshole in Way of the Samurai was so rewarding and fun. I think I should probably check out 3 just to try for that Legend of the Demon thing you mentioned.


:lol: In Way of the Samurai 3 it's not rewarding if you are trying to unlock everything. You get Samurai Points for being a good, true, or persistently honest samurai. You lose them for mercilessly killing innocent people. Basically, if you're only going to rent it it wouldn't matter. But most people would be better off unlocking everything through obtaining at least 10000 Samurai Points (which is rather easy if you play through the game 8 times or keep leaving the land to prompt an ending and save). This comes in handy if you want the dual wielding skill because it is sadly an unlockable.

For that ending,
Ending
you will at least need to have a relationship with the main villain, Shuzen, before you can start killing everyone. Because if you don't you won't get the ending -- his doors are locked for entrance unless you complete at least 5 missions for his faction and prompt the cutscene where he meets you. At that point you will have access to kill him at anytime. He must be the very last person you kill because if you kill him prematurely you will get one of his death endings. You even have to kill the old biwa players who save the game for you. But, you have to at least keep one alive so that you can test if you have reached 100% kills for the game.
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Jordan » Fri Dec 03, 2010 10:27 pm

That's really how the game should be to be honest. Though I didn't actually mean that the first Way of the Samurai literally rewarded the player for being a merciless murderer. There were usually some consequences to your actions if you just went around slaying people. It was just so fun to be a jackass in the game though. Occasionally it was rewarding too, admittedly. If I recall right, if you killed the blacksmith you could steal his gigantic hammer. Damn it was just so fun. The only games that really compare in that regard are Grand Theft Auto games.
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Zhuanyong » Fri Dec 03, 2010 10:31 pm

Yes, you can obtain his hammer in Way of the Samurai 3. However, there are two of them -- one in each town. One has an offense driven hammer and the other has a defense hammer. They are brothers - Older Dojima and Younger Dojima. I leveled them up so brutally I have two hammers at about 230/200 ATK and 200/230 DEF and I dual wield them.

You are truly making me want to create and post Youtube videos showing some of my exploits. :D
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Tiger of Kai » Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:14 pm

I never really enjoyed Way of the Samurai. I played the first one and I was more or less "eh" with it. When the second one came out, I heard reviews that said it was basically just like the first and if you were a fan you would love it. So I stayed away....
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Elitemsh » Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:26 pm

Just curious, how does this series compare to the onimusha games? The oniumsha games for me r among the best i've ever played, although i don't consider 4 as good as the others. For anyone whose played both, does this series have many similarities?
''I've never fought for anyone but myself. I've got no purpose in life. No ultimate goal. It's only when I'm cheating death on the battlefield. The only time I feel truly alive.'' ~Solid Snake
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Re: Way of the Samurai Series

Unread postby Zhuanyong » Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:39 pm

I am an Onimusha lover. So much so that when I was a member of the Capcom BBS, I was able to obtain a manga edition of the Onimusha comic from Udon due to an art contest. I hosted the contest and participated in it - for my troubles I got cel-art signed by the designer of Ryu for Street Fighter and the Udon Comic for Onimusha 4.

It is nowhere near as good as Onimusha. If you are looking for something like that, you won't find it with Way of the Samurai. It is more reflected on realistic battle rather than fantasy. It is alot of linear and wide scale combat rather than blowing wind at someone with a sword.

The Onimusha Series > Way of the Samurai Series

It is good if you like samurai games but, not as good as Onimusha.
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