EnglishFrenchJapaneseKorean
Powered by Translate
Stay in the Loop: (newsletter signup form)

Not UY, but surely good enough.

General discussion (non-Usagi Yojimbo related) about all things Japan -- Feudal Japan, Samurai, Ninjas, Anime & Manga, Chambara films, Japanese Pop Culture, Otaku, martial arts, history, sushi, giant robots, Godzilla... anything Japan-related!

Moderators: Steve Hubbell, Mayhem, Moderators

Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Cyberwolf » Wed May 22, 2013 13:04 +0000

For the DOsBOX Lovers and the similar like, anybody familiar with the classic computer game, MicroProse's Sword Of The Samurai? Its more addictive then Oregon Trail, though only because Oregon Trail didn't require you to rise to Shogun, manage fiefs, chase off cowardly bandits, have heirs, fight honor duels and more. Though outdated in terms of eveything, it has the authentic feel of playing a samurai in fedual times. Not a lot of games can boast that. The graphics are decent for its time, complete with noble vassals about to strike and jeeering bandits, If anything, one can point out 'At least its an educational game' in paltrey defense of being accused of playing too many video games from the wife, friend, etc. The frequent random quests and political happenings can get repetitive after awhile, (Hizo tried to kidnap Rokibue's heir and was discovered again?! The fool! Ah, these dog bandits never do stop terrorizing!), and the game can't be saved at least on the DOSBOX; but its difficult to find any UY lover hasn't tried out this game.

Anyone share a similar profession? Or, perhaps, discovery.
User avatar
Cyberwolf
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 11:52 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Toukon » Mon May 27, 2013 7:35 +0000

Wondered if anyone here knew about this game. :) It's one of my favourites, addictive, and can be either a quick play (with in-game options and quick-play scenarios to back that) or routinely consume hours. The random events can get annoyingly repetitive but it still has more choice, flexibility, free movement and fate choosing than most games, even recently. Not bad on the AI either, I like that your dishonoured rivals get more underhanded the worse their situation becomes (even if constantly defending your family and reputation from sneak attacks loses its novelty) and that you can track success and failure through generations.

There are ninja with their own version of ancient computer graphic invisibility, raiding of bandit lairs to save your (hopefully) future wife, large scale battles against enemies and rivals with different unit types or solo battles against overwhelming numbers of bandits through villages, rice paddies, and across bridges that make fantastic places to stage your last stand and die surrounded by swathes of fallen foes or triumph against the odds. To be honourable, loyal, or underhanded and merciless is your own choice and for all its flaws and age it does feel like walking into the world of a samurai epic. I have too much fun with this game.

Alt-S saves on my version of dosbox and Alt-Q quits.

Posting a screenshot so others can see some of the better graphics and art from the game. Figured one was enough, I'll remove or edit it if it's against forum rules in any way.

Image

I can't add any new discoveries, Sword Of The Samurai was one of the few things I knew of similar to Usagi that I hadn't mentioned on these forums.
Last edited by Toukon on Sat Jun 01, 2013 2:18 +0000, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
Toukon
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 21:47 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Cyberwolf » Thu May 30, 2013 12:38 +0000

Amen to all that, it is a highly addictive game no matter how repetitive the events get. Actually had to go save five future brides in a row, all ending in failure. They simply couldn't be found. Not quite sure about the starting stats of each region, but it seems less of Honor makes for more scheming, evil caln members, while if the region has higher honor, they rarely ever make any nasty attempts or assassainations. One particular clan of a little honor region had abut five or six successive generations all dirty dealing, caught at their rival estates, and committing seppeku. Each generation's heir was too young to lead since they were all getting killed off, and were handed off to other managers. Only the managers were about as bad as the ancestors, and so were the heirs in turn. It was quite the little rats nest, high, tireless work ethic at what they do.

On the other hand, regions with high Honor had other retainers of high Honor, who frequently seized the next titles, they were that good. Could also beat the player to some of the events more often. At least it seemed so to both sides. Dayimoship is a whole other bowl of noodles, it is extremely easy to become overwhelmed while tryng to conqueror other terroritories. Embarassingly got slipped up, even on the the Tanto difficulty. At the last selling point and praise, best swordfights for nigh a while. No merely shimmying the controller from left to right, they do take some clever/desperate button push. Had about three generations die in the same duel under the same conditions against the same foe. There were never just enough brides.

What's the highest difficulty you made Shogun on, Toukon? Curious to know.
User avatar
Cyberwolf
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 11:52 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Toukon » Sat Jun 01, 2013 3:30 +0000

Katana. According to the after game record the longest shogunate lasted 50 to 60 years, but that was Wakizashi level. Average under 10 years and I'm stuck at Katana working on my game tactics and strategy to someday beat the game on the last difficulty. Either die too soon and the game ends or my successor has inadequate skills to make it, or i start getting somewhere and am forced to retire from worldly affairs due to age and get stuck again with a less successful heir and high cost fall from power. How about you, Cyberwolf?

Donating land if you can afford it as Daimyo seems to make you more popular fast and less likely to suffer rebellion of captured regions; the number of times I've almost won only to lose over half of japan to rebellion and subsequently get obliterated by the new force are more than I want to count. :lol: Bad way to lose. I'm lucky that I only failed to find the girl twice, less lucky that I checked several floors of bandit hideout before discovering she was missing. Wonder if it's a bug or intentional. Failed a few times due to being shot on the higher difficulies and overwhelmed, the gunners often get a hit in large melee battles before i see them. Two's my record in death by dueling the same obsessional rival but can't remember if I defeated him in the third generation, was promoted, or if he died or retired.

Currently I'm half way through a Takeda, Kai game, level Katana. I play more of the better known historical clans to see how the game is set up regarding differences or advantages in resources (they also seem easier for obvious reasons, some condition had to work in their favour). I should try the other regions to see more honour variations, never seen any as dedicatedly underhanded or excellent and honourable as you have, it's some record.

Cyberwolf wrote:At the last selling point and praise, best swordfights for nigh a while. No merely shimmying the controller from left to right, they do take some clever/desperate button push.


I agree with you there. Not simple top-down or side view but with depth and a 3D maneuvering quality, strikes from multiple directions, differing quality in opponents and even variations in speed and ability to dodge between move types. Duels have become one of the aspects I like most in the game.
User avatar
Toukon
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 21:47 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Cyberwolf » Thu Jun 06, 2013 13:13 +0000

Still trying to master Wakizashi at the Daimyo level. Tend to have everything hand, then everything suddenly erupts into rebellion and seperate fractions, then rinse and repeat. Tend to have successive generations constantly stave all the sneaky under-handings of every other clan for whatever reason. Swords always go missing for no point at all, and there are strings of attempted kidnappings or attacks within in the home, even in the Daimyo stage. Courting almost alway ends in the bride being kidnapped and not found either as afore mentioned after several times. Not always from Great Honor families either. The player samurai must not be attractive enough, or do not have luxurious moustaches unlike the other portraits. Very bad strokes of luck right down to the great-grandson. Usually, who die in successive duels from said home invasions. Alas, the life of a noble samurai is a trying one.

Deal with honor lossess in the form of sword duels, real fast way if one doesn't have the time to deal with the regular bandits. Seems to pop up the Honor good enough, and yes, the duels are cake icing. Battles have to got to be decided by sheer army, there is much unfairness in the fights, and there are many battles. Found rebellions and attacks from the enemy much more easy then typical clan battles no matter what regions. It is still a great game regardless.
User avatar
Cyberwolf
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 11:52 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Toukon » Sun Oct 27, 2013 1:31 +0000

Something worth mentioning is that your rivals often have daughters you can beg to marry and I can't remember it triggering a rescue event (have been refused a few times, though).

The repeated errors with the game might be fixed with a different version of dosbox, assuming you're no longer running it on an original dos supporting computer. Could try it on another computer with a different version of dosbox to eliminate the possibility.


Tactics I use for the higher difficulty levels:

Choose land for your inheritance bonus.

Increase the taxes at least once if you can't hire enough samurai to fight, twice if you're still stuck for numbers. Don't think it makes it any harder, never had more revolutions that way than normal.

Work primarily in drilling your troops, increase your tactical prowess. They run less, fight harder, and will win even if significantly out numbered. Also sneak around the edge of the map trying to avoid enemies sensing or spotting you then get behind them and attack! Harder if they're better trained, easier if they're not. Most will run from that tactic regardless of superior numbers. If they start to turn you can fight them half turned and they'll still be at a disadvantage and more likely to flee but the same is true for your own troops. You can occasionally stop fleeing troops but they're limited use and will likely flee again if attacked. I use them for moral support (and sometimes bait for traps), units seem to appreciate backup and fight better with other soldiers nearby.

Choose the missions that involve armies and land rewards, use to hire more.

Donate occasional land to look good/increase follower loyalty and better keep the conquered territories on the map of Japan.

Turn down individual combat unless you're sure of a win (preferably have an heir before accepting at all) and need the honour. Same with the bandits. I avoid bandits in later levels.

Rule Japan in one lifetime or two generations maximum. It takes considerable effort and makes the final stage more unstable but it bypasses the heir obtaining and death-cost issue of the later difficulty levels. Essentially it's rushing through the game with a stable enough base to have a risky chance at winning, before problems stack. Find a better way and I'd like to hear it. :) I can't get any further in the game.

Cyberwolf wrote:The player samurai must not be attractive enough, or do not have luxurious moustaches unlike the other portraits. Very bad strokes of luck right down to the great-grandson. Usually, who die in successive duels from said home invasions. Alas, the life of a noble samurai is a trying one.


Could explain it all. :lol:

Looking at it, some of my tactics are dishonourable even if not technically dishonourable. Ever tried to play as a dishonourable villain?
User avatar
Toukon
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 21:47 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Cyberwolf » Sat Nov 23, 2013 15:11 +0000

By now, Wakazashi has been passed a good few times, and I believe at least once on Katana, can't exactly remember, only that there was lost of killing, swords, bandits and more killing. Not to mention every bandit is wielding guns on the higher difficulties, they are by the Daimyo level if one goes after them if remembered correctly. So yes, it is much more difficult. With tactics though, it often seems to be raw numbers alone. Armies will still flee even after a lot of training has been placed into them, and a genius manuever has been pulled off. Tha include whether or not soldier hiding on the ground. Dueling feels a much more significant way to attain and hold onto Honor Ranks as long as their is a heir waiting on the wings, seems more Honor is awarded for winning duels than winning battles, tiny rice patch thrown in or now. Of couse, the player has to live throughout each duel also. But the player just feels more like a samurai that way, no?

Rewards come as twice as fast for twice the work as a dishonorable samurai, because you have be jumping fences with heirs left and right to have any kind of advantage in land or promotions. And while the players are doing that, the rivals are out taking the player's family hostages left and right. They are always traveling.Been having the enemies raze the player's land more like that for some reason. Rarely ever come back home, because your mansion will be invaded as soon as you do. Find it much harder in the long run, since armies and swordsmanship wind up be neglected in favor of threatening, threatening, threatening. The armies are always small too, since perhaps the Honor is so low. And we are forgetting the chance of being discovered in whatever nerfarious plans and being forced to commit Seppuku. Don't commit Seppuku and your whole family is lovingly slain. Its also utter disappointment their is no Hire Ninjas to Kill Rival option, even though the other rivals somehow can. Discovered that beautiful beautiful menu option that details everybody's Honor, Family, Land and other vital ranks. Its almost like a wishlist checklist for kidnapping heirs. Nagawa has another son, so I'll take that one. Hmmm, Sotaski had only that one heir, so I'll just hold onto him that much longer..


Its addictive either way, going to be trying the harder difficulties anyhow. I have the recent edition of DosBox, random chains of event either happen or don't happen for mysterious reason,got to say the brides want to stay put now for the most part. Finally! To jump shark a little bit, anyone else want to offer up their opinions on this great game, or any other samurai-related games? If not, its fine too, Sword of the Samurai is a really good game that can be kept gloating on about. The player gets to wield a katana after all.

The game's winning combination probably is a mixture of dishonorable and honorable methods
User avatar
Cyberwolf
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 11:52 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Toukon » Thu Nov 28, 2013 0:34 +0000

Anyone who has anything to say about MicroProse's Sword Of The Samurai or other discoveries of anything similar to UY as per the title and original post content is welcome to chime in any time. :D Please don't feel discouraged or lost by all the talk on duels, kidnapping heirs, other dishonourable conduct and missing potential brides, it makes more sense if you've played the game.

But back to Cyberwolf until someone else does reply, it sounds like a better success rate might rely on becoming a better gamer, working on my skill level and not cutting corners to speed win the game. :lol: Thanks, that's useful information. Haven't made any progress or reached a higher level yet, or tried playing truly without honour. Sounds interesting despite the chaos.

Ever tried attacking something in your prefecture and getting away with it? First attempt at playing I didn't understand your leader's residence wasn't under attack when they requested help against warrior monks and attacked it personally. I need to see if that's possible with enough troops, or outright attacking rivals.

Duels certainly make you feel more of a samurai and personal triumph in defending honour or property. I need to be better at dueling in the later levels.

Cyberwolf wrote:Don't commit Seppuku and your whole family is lovingly slain.


I believe that happened when I accidentally attacked a rival.

Cyberwolf wrote:Its also utter disappointment their is no Hire Ninjas to Kill Rival option, even though the other rivals somehow can. Discovered that beautiful beautiful menu option that details everybody's Honor, Family, Land and other vital ranks. Its almost like a wishlist checklist for kidnapping heirs. Nagawa has another son, so I'll take that one. Hmmm, Sotaski had only that one heir, so I'll just hold onto him that much longer..


Ahh, that I haven't tried but the menu is excellent. :D Valuable idea, I've never kidnapped and heir before, I use it for finding potential brides (good to hear yours finally stay put, difficult to play without heirs) and checking rival strengths. I always assumed hiring ninjas would be a feature if you played the game dishonourably enough or played at high enough a level. If that's not so then I second the utter disappointment. Storming your rivals castle with a hoard of ninjas would be awesome.

Next time I play I'll check my dosbox version, it's likely a few years old.

Cyberwolf wrote:To jump shark a little bit, anyone else want to offer up their opinions on this great game, or any other samurai-related games? If not, its fine too, Sword of the Samurai is a really good game that can be kept gloating on about. The player gets to wield a katana after all.


A while ago I read the book The Samurai Banner of Furin Kazan by Yasushi Inoue. I would not recommend it as like UY, it lacks the cinematic pacing and historical placement and feel of UY and Kurosawa classics but I did like the book. To read it feels like being dragged through events by the main character's intense force of will more than a standard historical novel where the setting is the primary feature. The focus is on his plans, evaluations and strategies, feelings and loyalty.

The title of the book (quoted here from wikipedia) is based on:

Fūrinkazan (風林火山?), literally "Wind, Forest, Fire, Mountain", was the battle standard used by the Sengoku period daimyo Takeda Shingen, quoting chapter 7 of Sun Tzu's The Art of War: "as swift as wind, as orderly as forest, as fierce as fire, as unshakeable as mountain."

Before the book I was not aware of the Takeda clan and now play as them occasionally in Sword of the Samurai, but they have their own computer game series called Takeda, now up to Takeda 3. I bought the original recently and have played it twice due to the complexity of the system. The graphics and music are not notable for a game of the same age though technically better than Sword of the Samurai because of the software age and system capabilities. It feels like a far smaller, more limited and controlled game. Not that addictive either.

What Takeda has that Sword of the Samurai lacks but doesn't suffer from is specific history-derived events of the Takeda clan of that era and can choose to deviate from history. Game play focus is on battle field tactics almost exclusively, like an advanced version of Sword of the Samurai's battle field segments. Good game mechanics that better simulate the formations, power, actions, and state of the troops might make it unique enough to stand against Sword but so far I still prefer the older game over Takeda. I'll make further comments after I've played Takeda some more.

Out of interest here's a page detailing the features of Takeda 3. It mentions ninja sabotage and looks considerably more expansive than the original Takeda game I own.

http://www.ezgame.com/Takeda3/features.html

As far as I'm concerned neither the book or game have the same feel of awesome as UY and Sword of the Samurai, they're mentioned as other people may disagree or like them more and for comparison, it is a samurai-themed game. I like both but so far not half as much.
User avatar
Toukon
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 21:47 +0000

Re: Not UY, but surely good enough.

Postby Cyberwolf » Mon Jan 13, 2014 15:01 +0000

Dredging up the thread again with some more commentary, haven't tried out Takeda yet, but it looks interesting enough. It it about the same time period as Sword of the Samurai, I think a little after Oda Nobunga's rise? There is a Takeda clan in the Sword of the Samurai as mentioned, and there are reoccuring names of retainers, clans, and Daiymo which I willing to bet is historically accurate. It is worth mentioning there are lots of symbols (Banners?) that designate the clan you work for (Which looks like a little pagoda or castle but gets larger according to rank)
in all the provinces. There are stars and a certain shrine-like symbol, can't grab a screenshot at the moment. Perhaps the game had meant to fight against clans originally? That is what basically happens when Dayimo rank is achieved, fighting and fighting. And ouch, I don't think you can getaway with directly attacking the lords, even the dishonorables don't try it. You suffer whether you win or not.


Back to Takeda, how does it compare to the equally old Nobunga's Ambition? Lots of menus and forests of menus, with so many options and graphics? For those not in know, it is much like Ancient Bandit Kings Of China/Romance of The Three Kingdom, where the historical battle periods are enacted in that specific time period. Everything is managed from digging trenches, grabbing resources, and training soldiers and preventing floods. The key differences is that Ancient Bandit Kings of China relies on recruiting specfic culture famous heroes, Nobunga does not. They are different histories, but are pretty much the same game stratgey mechanics. Also has anyone passed either of those severly complex games or know what they are doing? Please speak up and save the poor suffering souls who do not.


To spur on dialogue from the shy and busy, played recently the old Commodore 64 version of Samurai Warrior:Usagi Yojimbo. Need to take a look on the color version, had some problems running the old game. It is simple, but it is fun. It has some nice gameplay details considering it is a strict sidescroller thanks to the karma systems.
Here is a brief summary: The player uses Usagi, ah, sidescrolling through enemies and allies. The sword can be sheathed, or unsheathed or swung at enemies. Attacking innocent peasants or just having the sword unsheathed brings down Karma points, greeting them or giving them money gets a lot, as does defeating enemies. No Karma points means Usagi is a shameful samurai and commits Seppuku. Some ronin will get upset and start swinging if proper respect isn't shown as well. A funny tidbit was found, when one certain rabbit ronin normally attacked, it wasn't Usagi. He'd pop out on the first level and have to be defeated. Later on in the second level, a boar ronin would pass by peacefully as long as he was respectfully greeted. I havd trouble sheathing the sword with the slow controls so he attacked me and had to be slain. Later, when replaying the first level, the boar ronin reappeared swinging right in the rabbit ronin's spot instead of the rabbit. Right onto the next level, the same rabbit ronin came out in the spot the boar ronin used to be in and had to be greeted. Amusing if nothing else. The graphics do look like they came right out of one of the issues, though it is forgivable if the games isn't like for a number of reasons. The fact that it emphasizes samurai gameplay rather then common butcher gameplay makes one yearn that more sequels or games would have released in that vein. Anyone else agree or disagree or want to wax on about some obscure samurai game?
User avatar
Cyberwolf
Shugyosha<Student Warrior>
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 11:52 +0000


Return to 日本の話題 - All Things Japan!

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest