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Analysis Samurai Maiden – Nintendo Switch

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Although your announcement may have been made in the latter part of the year, samurai maiden comes to Nintendo Switch to try to show that, in an incredible year for the big N and several of its games, there is still room to surprise us with a proposal that comes from Japan.

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Developed by SHADE Inc and published by D3PUBLISHER, this new adventure comes to Nintendo Switch to try to win our hearts with some very nice protagonists, a story set in the final stretch of Sengoku that looks very interesting right off the bat, intense combat and the Oda Nobunaga himself.

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Will all these elements work to give us a unique and enjoyable game? Will she be a victim of the eternal fanservice that is usually seen in Japanese titles and schoolgirls? The answer to this, and other questions, we are going to answer in this, our analysis.

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A curious way to work overtime

On a seemingly normal day in 21st century Japan, a young student with some swordsmanship skills finds herself transported by surprise to one of the moments that marked the history of her country. A burning temple, soldiers fighting for their lives as the chaos escalates by the minute, and a bearded man staring at her. Is that Oda Nobunaga?

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Our protagonist has reached nothing more and nothing less than the Honnō-ji Incident and for some reason things do not seem to follow the course of history that we all know. A fearsome threat, the Demon King himself, seems to be behind all this, so our protagonist will travel to the depths of the Underworld to face all kinds of threats and return things to her natural course. Fortunately, on this trip she will not be alone, as three ninjas will accompany her and together they will develop a friendship that goes beyond time and space.

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sword and hole

playable, samurai maiden It fits perfectly with what a hack’n’slash is, making use of multiple combos with the sword to face enemies and bosses that cover each of the areas through which we descend. Although the map zones share similar elements, each one has unique elements to make you feel a certain level of differentiation between them.

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The enemies are varied and each one of them, even the simplest ones, have its own characteristics even if the bases are the same. That is, while there are common soldiers who attack with spears, as you go down you find that there are other common soldiers with spears, but much more aggressive and resistant, which can cause you a headache if you err on the side of confidence because of your actions. previous interactions.

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The combat and management of the sword is one of the most satisfying I’ve tried on Nintendo Switch, having the possibility of improving our weapons to provide them with better attributes and special traits that give us small advantages when it comes to fighting. Upgrading weapons is NOT cheap, so the game opts to let you replay completed levels whenever you want to earn points or bond with your fellow ninjas.

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The bosses and common enemies, as I mentioned before, are quite good, although without a doubt the icing on the cake are the emblematic characters of the Sengoku period that we can face. Of course, transformed into girls, so if you are a fan of the Samurai Warriors or Fate Grand Order, this is something that you will surely like. Returning to focus on the bosses, they have very different mechanics and you have to learn patterns to deal with them with some ease, so they are the perfect way to put everything you have learned to the test.

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The power of friendship”

The protagonist’s relationship with her three friends is wonderful, using the game of visual novel style sequences to present the dialogues and interactions between them. Fighting is what increases our friendship level, and luckily each of the girls has unique abilities to prevent one from being more relevant than another and encourage us to use them constantly (something that is also helped by the possibility of being able to change props in real time).

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Fighting to improve our level of friendship with girls does not translate into something empty, and doing so not only rewards us with unique levels dedicated to each of them and their storiesbut also with new combos for our sword and the possibility of taking full advantage of the “Devoted Heart”.

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Devoted Heart is a powerful unique ability that can get us out of more than one jam and whose main element changes depending on the partner with whom we make this movement. It’s powerful, but not powerful enough to be considered “game balance breaking”, so there is some freedom to make use of it as long as a few conditions are met (nothing out of this world or overly complicated).

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samurai maiden
They are friends”

Dare to relive your trip

Finally, although the fact of being able to access any level that we have previously overcome is already an incentive to replay, there are a series of hidden treasures thanks to which we can get hold of sketches and concept art of the game, so it’s a good way to continue enjoying once the main adventure comes to an end. If it’s not your thing, you can always test yourself again with the rest of the difficulty modes that the game offers and that Are not avaliables from the start.

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As you can see, we are facing a game that does many things well, perhaps its only sin being the imminent feeling of “being repetitive” that is usually associated with this kind of game, although it is not such a notorious problem if we compare it with certain levels where the difficulty gets to feel very unfair and contrived. Throughout the game there are difficult levels, but generally you will see the “Game Over” screen because of your own mistakes, well, there are some levels that seem to skip that philosophy and go all out. They are not impossible to complete, but they can break the rhythm of the game.

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Functional and good looking

samurai maiden It’s a game with a visual and artistic section that work quite well together and are supported by character designs that really catch your eye and come to like. The girls take the cake for being adorable and having a photo mode to immortalize your best moments on the battlefield. It should be noted that, although at first glance it seems that the game draws a lot from visual fanservice, in reality this is left quite aside to bet on a good story with interesting characters and satisfying combat.

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In terms of performance, this it goes much better than I would have expected from a game of this cut on Nintendo Switch. Frame drops are not something you see often and 99.9% of the time the experience is stable and fluid, although it must be said that there is a particular level which can become a real nightmare due to frame drops (luckily it is a short level and there is a confirmed day 1 patch in which we hope it will be fixed).

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The soundtrack also complies, with a main theme with a lot of hook and a good job on the voices. Unfortunately, if you want to understand what is being said, you will have to know how to speak Japanese or have an average knowledge of the English language to read, because the game does not have a translation into Spanish.

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Samurai Maiden – A samurai with a lot of charisma

In a 2022 plagued with great releases on Nintendo Switch, Samurai Maiden is one of those hidden gems in the hybrid’s catalog and a perfect way to close the year. The story is interesting, the characters are charismatic, and the sword combat is one of the most satisfying I’ve experienced (beating even games with a much higher budget), so you can keep playing for very long sessions without realizing it (although here we recommend take breaks to drink water or relax your eyes).

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It may have some other “but”, like that feeling of artificial difficulty in certain levels, but the general picture is good, the virtues of the game overcome any “but” and it ends up being a very satisfying experience.

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Are you interested in giving it a try? samurai maiden? You will find it available in digital format through the Nintendo Switch eShop. At the moment there is no confirmed edition in physical format for the European market, although the Asian market does have one.

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samurai maiden

This analysis has been carried out thanks to a digital code provided by D3PUBLISHER. Analyzed version. 1.20

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samurai maiden

A samurai with a lot of charisma

Samurai Maiden presents us with an interesting story, charismatic characters, and a sword combat system that is one of the most satisfying I’ve experienced in a long time. It is not perfect, but without a doubt, it is a jewel in the Nintendo Switch catalog.

PROS

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The dynamics and relationship between its protagonists

Almost, almost flawless performance on Nintendo Switch

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CONS

Absence of translation into USAin a game with great weight in history

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At a certain point, the difficulty can feel “artificial”

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