Sengoku Basara: Samurai Heroes

Platforms:  Sony Playstation 3, Nintendo Wii

Developed by:  Capcom

UK Distributor:  Capcom

ELSPA rating: 16+

Original Retail Price (SRP):  £29.99

Release Date:  15 October 2010

Reviewer:  Matt Dark 

A number of Capcom games have been given anime adaptations over the years, from Dark Stalkers and Street Fighter, to more recent series such as Devil May Cry and Megaman.  Their latest game-to-anime titles is their little-known Sengoku Basara series. 

With the anime coming out soon (November 8 2010)  Capcom have decided to release 'Samurai Heroes', the third game in the Basara series, outside of Japan, so we can see just what inspired this anime to be made.

Samurai Heroes is set in the Japanese Sengoku period (The 'Warring States' Era).  Japan is split into many small states, with the rulers of each land fighting over control of power and land.  You will take the role of one of a selection of notable figures during this time as you do battle throughout the various states in order to unify the country.

While the main focus of the story lies between two particular characters, Iyeasu Tokugawa

and Mitsunari Ishida, as they amassed power in order to fight each other for rule of Japan, every character has their own little story that they follow, to better explain their part in the game.

For the most part, the game keeps some historical facts close to its story, but for the most part, it happily takes some artistic merit in order to make a more enjoyable experience.  Throughout the game, there are a number of diverse, colourful characters who help to move the story forward.  Also, unlike other games of its type, Samurai Heroes doesn't always take itself seriously; there were plenty of cut-scenes and snippets of dialogue that left a smirk on my face.

Gameplay is fairly simple, and quite similar to Samurai Warriors (another hack-and-slash game taking place in the same period of Japan) you wander around a map, striking down countless numbers of enemies before facing off with the commander of the area.

Controls are fairly simple, allowing you to let off large combos by tapping away on square before pressing triangle for a stronger, attack.  However, Samurai Heroes also has a number of extra attacks that can be unleashed by pressing either L1 or R1.  And later on, you'll gain access a 'Super Art' an even stronger special that can be activated at any time by tapping R2.

Along with all of these, you can build up two energy bars to access a pair of special abilities.  First activates your special attack, which unleashes a huge automatic combo that hits everyone around you.  The second, allows you to slow your enemies to a crawl, letting you deal out extra punishment to your enemies while they can do next to nothing.

   The game is fairly simple to play; each map has you going from base to base, taking over enemy camps in order to reduce their numbers, before going to take out the enemy general.  Though a lot of the stages have smaller targets you can aim for, such as protecting certain troops or finding hidden paths, which all have their own little rewards when they are completed.

The story has a lot available for completists too, each character has a number of paths

they can follow, each one with a different number of battles, but the order you do them can change some of the rewards you get, as specific paths will unlock bodyguards to help you.

For the most part, the game is pretty fun.  The graphics, while looking good, aren't as detailed as some big titles out there, but the game is bright and colourful.  And perhaps because it doesn’t have such a high-level in terms of graphics, it allows the game to deal with the problem others of its type suffer from.  While other games like Samurai Warriors have problems with the occasional lag, and enemies disappearing from the screen at random, Samurai Heroes never had this problem, even playing in two player, it rarely suffered from any type of slowdown. 

For me, this is a fun game to play, and you'd be surprised how quickly the hours can pass when you really get into it.  It's definitely worth your time.


The bulk of the extras comes from unlockable items.  There are ten playable characters to be unlocked, along with a large range of bodyguards to assist you.

Along with this, every stage has unique items that can be found which are used to create items to power yourself up, there are also a large number of weapons for each character, which will push you onto higher difficulties to get everything.

Also each character has a number of alternate storylines they can follow, adding to the play-time if you want to complete every path.


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