SNK is back to producing greatness all over again.
After the success of The King of Fighters XIV (and to a lesser extent, SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy), the Japanese gaming mainstay is giving its fans more franchise comebacks in the future. One of those upcoming revivals is the 2019 installment of SNK’s amazingly bloody weapons-based fighter, Samurai Shodown. This throwback fighter is returning to the forefront of fighting games with a fresh visual style, the power of the Unreal Engine 4 development engine, and refined system mechanics that longtime fans will certainly master and enjoy.
To commemorate the impending launch of Samurai Shodown, we’re here to break down every detail behind its much-anticipated return.
Samurai Shodown (2019) is set to release on PS4 and Xbox One on June 25. The Google Stadia version is prepped for launch on November 19. The game is also set to launch on Nintendo Switch on February 25, 2020, and on PC on June 11, 2020. And finally, the Xbox Series X|S version will launch on March 16, 2021.
Samurai Shodown (2019) Reveal Trailer
Samurai Shodown takes place within the 18th century. Timeline-wise, this installment’s storyline occurs after the events of Samurai Shodown V and prior to the events of the very first entry in the series. So now the official series timeline and plot synopsis for this new entry are as follows:
– Samurai Shodown V
– Samurai Shodown (2019)
– Samurai Shodown (1993)
– Samurai Shodown III
– Samurai Shodown IV
– Samurai Shodown II
– Samurai Shodown 64
– Samurai Shodown V Special
– Samurai Shodown 64: Warriors Rage
– Samurai Shodown: Edge of Destiny
– Samurai Shodown VI
– Samurai Shodown: Warriors Rage
It is 1787, the 7th year of the Tenmei era. A newly appointed counsel to the Shogun, Matsudaira Sadanobu, has been chosen to usher in a new age of reform with the Kansei era. However, the land remains beset by fire, ruin, and famine, all while a sinister cloud darkens the air with a foreboding sense of dread.
Samurai Shodown’s revival will be marked by the return of 13 fan-favorite characters who’ll all be playable at launch. The game’s starting roster will include fighters from the series’ many mainline sequels and even the 64-bit iteration of the franchise. Along with all those returning characters, three brand new faces will join the weapons-clashing fray. At launch, fans can look forward to utilizing a total of 16 playable characters. DLC characters are also expected to arrive sometime after launch.
Check out the list below to get an idea of who you’ll be looking to main once Samurai Shodown finally arrives:
– Charlotte (Returning Character)
– Darli Dagger (New Character)
– Earthquake (Returning Character)
– Galford (Returning Character)
– Genjuro Kibagami (Returning Character)
– Hanzo Hattori (Returning Character)
– Haohmaru (Returning Character)
– Jubei Yagyu (Returning Character)
– Kyoshiro Senryo (Returning Character)
– Nakoruru (Returning Character)
– Shiki (Returning Character)
– Tam Tam (Returning Character)
– Ukyo Tachibana (Returning Character)
– Wu-Ruixaing (New Character)
– Yashamaru Kumara (New Character)
– Yoshitora Tokugawa (Returning Character)
– Rimururu (Returning DLC Character; releasing in August 2019)
– Shizumaru Hisame (Returning DLC Character; releasing in September 2019)
– Basara (Returning DLC Character; releasing in October 2019)
– Kazuki Kazama (Returning DLC Character; releasing in November 2019)
– Wan-Fu (Returning DLC Character; releasing in December 2019)
– Mina Majikina (Returning DLC Character; releasing in February 2020)
– Sogetsu Kazama (Returning DLC Character; releasing in April 2020)
– Iroha (Returning DLC Character; releasing sometime in 2020)
– Warden (New Guest Character from Ubisoft’s For Honor; releasing in June 2020)
– Gongsun Li (New Guest Character from Tencent’s Honor of Kings; releasing in August 2020)
– Cham Cham (Returning DLC Character; releasing in March 2021)
– Hibike Takane (New Guest Character from The Last Blade)
– New Guilty Gear Guest Character
Samurai Shodown will offer a bevy of modes at launch, including Story, Practice, Online Battle, Gallery, and other types of offline battle modes (Survival, etc.). The new “Dojo” will act as the game’s new asynchronous online feature – as you play through the game’s offline modes, it will take note of your battle behavior and create a Ghost AI character that mimics your overall playstyle.
Your Ghost AI fighter can then be uploaded to an online leaderboard where other players can download it and battle against it in an offline manner. The “Ironman Challenge” mode is the biggest Ghost AI challenge of all as it tasks you with defeating 100 ghosts all in one go. The Dojo mode gives players access to Samurai Shodown’s best players as they’ll be able to test themselves against the very best Ghost AI fighters.
Samurai Shodown retains its storied weapons-based fighting game mechanics. Two characters battle it out on a 2D plane where plenty of blood is spilled when lethal attacks are landed. When two attacks clash at the same time, the series’ signature “Sword Clash” mechanic comes into play. Whoever mashes their attack buttons harder and faster wins the ensuing struggle and forces the losing character to drop their weapon. As expected, each character can pull off special moves and super special moves (these can only be pulled off once per match).
As you take damage during the battle, your character’s “Rage Gauge” will gradually fill. Once it reaches its max limit, your attack power gets a substantial boost. This “Max Rage” character state strengthens certain moves and gives your fighter the ability to pull off their “Weapon Flipping Technique.” If you happen to land this powerful maneuver, your opponent will immediately be disarmed. Another benefit of filling the Rage Gauge is the “Rage Explosion.” This technique gives your character access to the cinematic “Lightning Blade” dash attack (the Rage Explosion technique can only be activated once per match).
Samurai Shodown (2019) Pre-Order
Samurai Shodown will be available in both a physical and digital Standard Edition. The game’s Digital Deluxe Edition will come with the Season Pass, which includes four additional roster members. These extra characters are set to arrive in August 2019, October 2019, November 2019, and December 2019, respectively. Each of these characters can be bought separately, of course. If you purchase Samurai Shodown before June 30th, the Season Pass comes free of charge. Early adopters of the Standard Edition will receive a retro 3D skin for Haohmaru. Early purchasers of the digital Deluxe Edition or Season Pass get the aforementioned costume and a retro 3D skin for Nakoruru.
The game’s Collector’s Edition (known as the “SNK Complete Pack”) comes with a physical copy of the game, a NeoGeo stylized game case, an art book, and an original piece of art illustrated by Yumi Saji.