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S&S; Review: Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword

Posted on the 21 February 2012 by Sameo452005 @iSamKulii

S&S; Review: Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword
Title: Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword
Format: 3DS eShop
Release Date: Feb 2, 2012
Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Grounding Inc.
Price: $6.99
ESRB Rating: T
Work on the Panzer Dragoon-inspired and Unreal Engine 3-powered Project Draco for Kinect continues. To hold you over Grounding Inc, the house built by Panzer creator Yukio Futatsugi, presents this latest dive into Japanese folklore archetypes. Sakura Samurai:Art of the Sword aims to dominate the eShop with power and precision. This cherry blossom signals a springtime for Nintendo's digital download service.
S&S; Review: Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword
A cursed princess is in need of rescuing and your spirit guide/mentor Kappa is here to teach you the exquisite art of Japanese swordplay. The watercolor backdrops and brushscript fonts set up the story in the same way we've seen in titles like Muramasa and Okami. The graphics in-game, however, are very reminiscent of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. The character models are simplified and stylized yet very expressive. Despite the surreal look, I felt immersed in true samurai duels. On the point of immersion, these are some of the best 3D visuals on the system. Dialogue boxes fly off the screen and cherry blossom petals fly in your face.
S&S; Review: Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword
Core Gameplay:
Anybody who's played a game on the NES remembers "Nintendo Hard." Games on cartridges were intentionally harder. Enemies in-game were sent out to seek and destroy any poor gamer that dared "press start." The reason for this, developers knew that gamers would spend more time with the games and become better players. Sakura Samurai is "Nintendo Hard." The branching paths through this adventure present a way for players to explore feudal Japan. Yet, the true focus of the game is in the title, "Art of the Sword." Your character is trained by Kappa from the outset, but the key to winning is by catching on to the timing of each enemy and his attack. As you get better at swordplay, you'll gain precision points, build your sword level, and fire off some impressive special attacks. Some players may deftly breeze through this title. Most will end up with flashes of those "Nintendo Hard" games of our pasts. In short, players will find themselves with the urge to pitch the 3DS at the nearest wall. But, after countless deaths emerges a mastery of the samurai sword.
S&S; Review: Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword
Final Thoughts:
Sakura Samurai carries the legacy of Grounding Inc. This is the work of a dream team of developers and artists and worthy to stand aside: Panzer Dragoon, Rez, and Meteos. Aesthetically and gameplay-wise this is a Nintendo game. Sakura Samurai is full of surreal, stylized, and eye-popping visuals. That beauty though is the sugar coating to the "Nintendo Hard" sweetness on the inside.
Final Score = 9.25/10 Email: [email protected] Twitter: @jeanlucpierite PSNID: neshoba78 gamertag:neshoba78

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