Samurai Shodown (2019 video game)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Samurai Shodown
Samurai Shodown 2019 cover art.png
Developer(s)SNK Corporation
Publisher(s)Athlon Games[1]
Bandai Namco Entertainment
  • JP: SNK Corporation
Director(s)Nobuyuki Kuroki[2]
Producer(s)Yasuyuki Oda
Artist(s)Nobuyuki Kuroki[2]
Yumi Saji[3]
SeriesSamurai Shodown
EngineUnreal Engine 4[4]
ReleasePlayStation 4, Xbox One
  • WW: June 25, 2019
  • JP: June 27, 2019
  • JP: October 24, 2019
  • WW: November 19, 2019
Nintendo Switch, Windows
  • JP: December 12, 2019
  • WW: February 25, 2020
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Samurai Shodown (known as Samurai Spirits in Japan) is a 2019 fighting game developed and published by SNK for Arcade, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows, and Stadia as an entry in the Samurai Shodown series.


Similarly to The King of Fighters XIV and SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy, Samurai Shodown features full 3D models moving on a 2D plane.


Samurai Shodown takes place between the events of the 1993 game and Samurai Shodown V and has been cited as a reboot of the series.[6]

The game takes place in 1787, during the Tenmei Era of Japanese history. The entire country is beset by a terrible and looming evil. Fire, ruin and famine ran rampant throughout Japan. Meanwhile, as these events unfold, a sinister cloud envelops the air with a foreboding sense of dread. Shizuka Gozen, the deceased spirit of a young woman who is possessed and trapped in Yomi, (labeled Eternity in the game itself) threatens to destroy Japan. Warriors from all across Japan and beyond the ocean, driven by their own needs and desires, converge to investigate these evil forces and vanquish them.


Samurai Shodown features a base roster of 16 playable characters, with others available as downloadable content. Newcomers are marked in italics.

  • BasaraD1
  • Charlotte
  • Darli Dagger[7]
  • Earthquake
  • Galford
  • Genjuro Kibagami
  • Hanzo Hattori
  • Haohmaru
  • Jubei Yagyu
  • Kazuki KazamaD1
  • Kyoshiro Senryo
  • Mina MajikinaD2
  • Nakoruru
  • RimururuD1
  • Shiki
  • ShizukaB
  • Shizumaru HisameDFREE
  • Tam Tam
  • Ukyo Tachibana
  • Wan-FuD1
  • Yashamaru Kurama[8]
  • Yoshitora Tokugawa
  • Wu-Ruixiang[8]


  • ^D : Downloadable content (number denotes from which season they are released)
  • ^B : Non-playable boss character


Samurai Shodown was unveiled at the SNK Investor Relations 2018 IPO conference,[5] being developed by SNK Corporation. The twelfth main game in the Samurai Shodown series, it is the first mainline entry since 2008's Samurai Shodown Sen.

The development team consists of members who worked on The King of Fighters XIV and SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy.[2] Nobuyuki Kuroki is the director and one of the artists,[2] while Yasuyuki Oda serves as producer. Kuroki has been previously involved with the series through the Samurai Shodown 64 titles.[6] The internal staff at SNK who worked on the game consisted of 50 to 60 employees, as well as outsourcing some art assets, to form a total of an estimated 200 employees who worked on the game.[9] Some of the reasons for making a new title were the recent focus on the esports community and the many fan requests.[6] The team considered using a realistic art style for the graphics but decided against it because too many fighting games were using it already.[10] Oda has expressed interest in adding guest characters from other franchises.[6][10]

Due to outdated graphics involving the releases of The King of Fighters XIV and SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy, SNK chairman Zhihui GE had stated that the future SNK fighting games will use Unreal Engine 4 in order to give a better graphical presentation. Samurai Shodown became the first SNK game to use Unreal Engine 4.[11]


Aggregate score
MetacriticPS4: 81/100[12]
XONE: 78/100[13]
Review scores
Game Informer7.75/10[16]
Game Revolution4/5[17]

Samurai Shodown has received generally favorable reviews, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions earning a Metacritic score of 81 and 78 respectively.[12][13] Den of Geek gave the game 3.5 out of 5 stars, and commented that Samurai Shodown "is a fighting game that’s incredibly solid in its core gameplay and looks swell enough, but it sadly feels like it’s lacking because there’s little else to do." [20] The Mercury News called the game a solid revamp for the series, and noted that SNK upgraded the visuals and was as challenging as ever.[21] In their review of the game, GameSpot called the game a great reboot that captured what made the original fun and unique, while also drawing attention to the fact that the single-player experience was somewhat lacking.[18] IGN praised the game's fighting mechanics, and noted that there was an extraordinarily tense style of fighting that is unlike just about anything else in the genre in the current fighting game climate.[19] The PlayStation 4 version was the fourth bestselling game in Japan during its first week of release, selling 16,662 copies.[22] On July 4, SNK reported that first-week shipments plus digital sales totaled 40,606 units.[23]

The game was nominated for "Best Fighting Game" at The Game Awards 2019.[24]


  1. ^ "Samurai Shodown to be published by Athlon Games". Gematsu. 7 March 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d Co, Franz (2018-09-13). "Nobuyuki Kuroki confirms that new Samurai Shodown is being made by the same team as The King of Fighters XIV and SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy". Shoryuken. Complex. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  3. ^ "Nobuyuki KUROKI & Yumi SAJI: signing". Japan Expo Paris. 2019-06-21. Retrieved 2019-07-05. Nobuyuki KUROKI and Yumi SAJI, Art Director and Chara-Designer of the new opus.
  4. ^ "SAMURAI SHODOWN releases in 2019! Watch the teaser trailer now!" (Press release). Suita-city, Osaka, Japan: SNK Corporation. 2018-09-10. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  5. ^ a b Moyse, Chris (2018-12-05). "Samurai Shodown is reportedly coming early 2019 for PS4, PC, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch". Destructoid. Enthusiast Gaming. Retrieved 2018-12-11.
  6. ^ a b c d Romano, Sal (2019-03-25). "Samurai Shodown launches for PS4 and Xbox One in June, Switch in Q4 2019 and PC later; 44 minutes of gameplay and staff interview". Gematsu. Gematsu. Retrieved 2019-03-25.
  7. ^ "Darli Dagger announced as first newcomer for Samurai Shodown", EventHubs, March 30, 2019
  8. ^ a b SAMURAI SHODOWN / SAMURAI SPIRITS – Trailer (Asia)
  9. ^ Kane, Alex (21 June 2019). "The making of Samurai Shodown (2019)". Polygon. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  10. ^ a b Nelva, Giuseppe (2019-03-30). "New Samurai Shodown Character Revealed: Darli Dagger; Neogeo Collection Announced". Twinfinite. Twinfinite. Retrieved 2019-03-30.
  11. ^ "SNK 갈지휘 회장 겸 개발총괄 "언리얼 엔진 사용 확대, KOF15도 언리얼로 개발중"". GameFocus. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  12. ^ a b "Samurai Showdown for PlayStation 4 Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  13. ^ a b "Samurai Shodown for Xbox One Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ a b Kemps, Heidi (28 June 2019). "Samurai Shodown Review - New Blood". GameSpot. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  19. ^ a b Saltzman, Mitchell (24 June 2019). "Samurai Shodown Review - IGN". IGN. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  20. ^ Jasper, Gavin (28 June 2018). "Samurai Shodown Review: Fun Swordplay with Only a Slice of Content". Den of Geek. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  21. ^ Chaco, Giesen (28 June 2019). "'Samurai Shodown' a solid revamp for cult fighting game series". The Mercury News. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  22. ^ Romano, Sal (3 July 2019). "Famitsu Sales: 6/24/19 – 6/30/19". Gematsu. Retrieved 4 July 2019.
  23. ^ Romano, Sal (4 July 2019). "Samurai Shodown PS4 shipments and digital sales top 40,606 in Japan". Gematsu. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
  24. ^ Winslow, Jeremy (19 November 2019). "The Game Awards 2019 Nominees Full List [game title mislabeled as "Samurai Showdown"]". GameSpot. Retrieved 23 November 2019.

External links[edit]