Samurai Shodown VI (サムライスピリッツ天下一剣客伝, Samurai Supirittsu Tenkaichi Kenkakuden, Tale of the World's Greatest Swordsmen), is the tenth game in the Samurai Shodown series of fighting games and the 12th game in the official chronology (if considered the non-canonical games). This game features all characters from the 2D games and is a dream match installment.
The game's storyline is a standalone parallel world based on the events of Samurai Shodown V and previous games in the series (ie: Gaira is bald, Genan has his children from his second ending). The producer gives it the nickname "festival game".
Set in an unknown year, Yoshitora makes a proclamation to decide the strongest fighter in the world. Each battle takes place at various festivals from countries all over the world. Every stage represents a different festival or holiday, for example Halloween in Ireland, or the Lunar New Year's in China.
Samurai Shodown VI is the next installment to the Samurai Shodown series after Samurai Shodown V Special. The game features new backgrounds with 2D and 3D elements, as well as a returning cast of all 28 characters from Samurai Shodown V Special, as well as all 7 characters from Samurai Shodown and Samurai Shodown II that didn't appear in later games, and 4 new characters. It also features a "spirit select" system, which allows players to choose between six different fighting styles based on all previous installments.
Despite normal Samurai Shodown releases and distribution outside of Japan, the game has been released outside of the country on the Atomiswave system sponsored in the United States by Sega but had limited distribution. The game was released for the PlayStation 2 in Japan on January 25th, 2006. The PS2 release added even more playable characters, and three more spirit select systems to go along with them. With the PS2 release, virtually every character to have ever appeared in the 2D Neo Geo games, including the referee, Kuroko, and the animal characters, are all playable. The sole exception is the courier man Hikyaku. The American and European home versions were released respectively on March 24 and March 29, 2009 on the PS2, PSP and Wii as part of the compilation Samurai Shodown Anthology. On November 22, 2016 the game was released for the PlayStation 4 on North America through the PlayStation Network, with enhanced features such as trophy support and uprendered resolution. For a limited time, the game was included along the Samurai Shodown NeoGeo Collection, only on PS4.
Due to the controversy surrounding the graphic nature of its predecessor and Sega sponsorship, the violence is toned down. The ability to perform fatalities is removed from the game, and blood effects are replaced with fireworks. In addition, more controversy came about with the fact that all of the voice actors were replaced with new ones, causing massive fan outcry.
During the release of Samurai Shodown V Perfect, it was revealed that V Perfect was also itself a dream match, and that VI would become its direct sequel in terms of story. V Perfect would be released 14 years later in a modern compilation, after being shelved for being an unapproved sequel.
The character Iroha was well-received by fans in Japan and stars in several mobile games, beside being the 2nd in Dengeki DLC character popularity poll, to join the cast of Samurai Shodown (2019).
The new characters added to the roster are:
- Andrew, an American soldier who goes to Japan to stop a new menace to his relatively young country. He turns friend of Yoshitora, after rivaling with him;
- Iroha, a crane transformed in a Japanese maid, who does anything for protect her master;
- Sugoroku Matsuribayashi, a hearty party-man who wants to spread the fun of his profession. He are based on the Naked Festival that occurs in Japan;
- Ocha-Maro Karakuri, an army of wooden puppets created during the Heian period for a famous onmyōji.
Returning from Samurai Shodown V & V Special
- Genjuro Kibagami
- Ukyo Tachibana
- Hanzo Hattori
- Kyoshiro Senryo
- Shizumaru Hisame
- Gaira Caffeine
- Sogetsu Kazama
- Kazuki Kazama
- Tam Tam
- Charlotte Christine de Colde
- Galford D. Weller
- Jubei Yagyu
- Yoshitora Tokugawa
- Youkai Kusaregedo
- Mina Majikina
- Yumeji Kurokouchi
- Zankuro Minazuki
- Liu Yunfei
- Mizuki Rashojin
- Shiro Tokisada Amakusa
- Gaoh Kyougoku Hinowanokami
- Sankuro Yorozu
Returning from Samurai Shodown I & II
- Demon Gaoh (Non-playable)
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