Games

The Last Blade: Beyond the Destiny Review (Switch eShop)

Last blade Is a fighting game series set in Japan’s late Tokugawa period in the mid-19th century, which means that Japan was open to Western trade, investment and influence. It’s all a bit historic, but the unique motifs of the era make the last blade very aesthetically interesting.

First appeared in the arcade in 1997 Last blade A more spiritual successor Samurai spirits Rather than evolution, both games have their own mechanical strengths. Samurai Spirits’ carefully measured play is heavier than the last blade and has strategic elements based on the destructive big weapon strike, while being lightweight and fast all-round. Two playstyle options, speed mode and power mode, allow players to shape their favorite character with a focus on faster combo-driven play or a more powerful and defensive approach.

Neo Geo Pocket was a short-lived heavenly blessing if you were an arcade kid in 1998. It was discontinued within three years and the Neo Geo home console hardcore profile failed.It’s a hellish niche and sadly very Exclusive. SNK proved that while the console was still in its early monochrome build, it designed a system that could faithfully reproduce the arcade fighting gaming experience in the palm of your hand. Anyone who wrote it down based on its pretty renderings missed the trick: Neo Geo’s signature arcade action was narrowed down, neatly arranged, and given a new life on a portable plane.

Last blade: Beyond fate It was quite late when Neo Geo Pocket debuted in 2001, just before SNK filed for bankruptcy. Its European release was subject to a recall when the company shut down all overseas operations a month later, making it one of the rarest English titles in the console library.

Lovingly crouched and lovingly presented, The Last Blade offers nine playable characters drawn from the original arcade game, each with a beautifully drawn portrait and a large, well-animated version. Comes with a sprite. Those unfamiliar with hardware shouldn’t expect a wide color palette or detailed pixel work, but the graphical toolset has a bag of personality and, importantly, captures the essence of the arcade’s cousin. .. A whimsical theme of the old Japanese Romantic era and invasive westernization, paying attention to the background of the arcade game, the sequence of stage introductions, the reproduction of music, all carried in a layer of bold anime Panash. I am.

The combat structure is slightly stripped, but not so much. This achievement is what made it feel special for gamers who had Neo Geo Pocket in their heyday. It was a kind of magic to easily import the skills learned in the arcade into a small game that you can play on the train. Last blades include repulsion, juggling, hops, cross-ups, air recovery, super moves, and the desperate attack of a flashy last ditch. Commanded by just two buttons, it uses short taps for light attacks and long presses for heavy hits. It’s not as tricky as you might think, and the action is significantly slower than an arcade game, so it adapts much faster. Both arcade power and speed options are also here, and you can unlock EX mode with a quick code. In this mode, you can draw elements from both power and speed to create large combos with less defense.

In addition to the story mode and all its surroundings in the movie, training, survival, and time attack modes are available, as well as combat with two players. For those who want to earn money over time, the bonuses you can get by buying scrolls are absolutely packed.All 5 unlockable characters on the character selection screen Last blade 2, And basically change the game to a point that will be a full-fledged amalgam on both the last blades 1 and 2. And you can unlock the two original mini-games as if that weren’t enough: the home run competition and the Great Escape from the Gates of Hell.

It’s an undeniably impressive miniaturization feat, but sadly, all neo-pocket fighting games suffer from weak AI, and The Last Blade is no exception.It is in the shape of Mortal Kombat-Flame, as long as you have the correct spacing, you can repeatedly spam the basic jump-in combo, and your opponent will block the opener 7 out of 10 times I fail. There are only 5 battles and encounters with the boss, and one completion is fairly quick. And it’s even faster if you can regularly put a brute force overhead kick into a standing jab or fireball (or something similar). Despite the original hardware limitations, discovering that the impressive complexity of the game can easily be circumvented by a simple fallback method is still slightly shrinking.

In addition, the additional game configuration options are a bit disappointing. You can now rewind in-game actions for a few seconds. This is great for losers who cannot accept defeat. You can also choose from the full range of original Neo Geo Pocket bezels. cute. But why the game doesn’t use the add switch button is a mystery.

Touch-sensitive light and hard attacks work very well if the buttons are limited to two, but the option to assign these attacks to additional buttons was just welcomed. Experience the old software, not. Sure, it’s not always possible to measure the right button timing during a battle, so the two-button limit can stumble you. Zantetsu is a good example of where extended button assignments can help, as it’s common to accidentally trigger ninja invisibility and have far more obstacles than AI (which seems unnoticed).

There is only one screen filter and it’s pretty good to enlarge the image to capture the look of the original hardware dot TFT display, but a few more options and an opacity slider are welcome. However, the most obvious omission is the lack of an on-the-fly command list. Now this should be a prerequisite for any fighting game, old or new, but it seems to have been lazyly overlooked. The only way to see your character’s attack commands is to pause and view the scan of the game’s original manual. If you need to double-check a particular command, there is no way to return to the page you were currently viewing. You have to reload from the manual cover page and cycle through all (now irrelevant) console hardware every time. It’s too slow and time-consuming, so you’ll need a smartphone for immediate reference.

Conclusion

The Last Blade: Beyond the Destiny is a great little thing, but it’s still a 2001 handheld fighting game and you need to remember most of that time. On the original hardware it was sent from heaven, but on the switch it can be a bit disappointing when blinded. For SNK enthusiasts and Last Blade fans, it’s purely historical value, but for those who have no experience with Neo Geo Pocket or SNK Library, I think it’s better to buy the actual arcade ports for Last Blades 1 and 2. Probably. Available at eShop. To that end, this is a better bet for fans, collectors, and those who are crazy about the curiosity of the game. It’s tiny, attractive, and a testament to the craftsmanship of old SNK. And, albeit incompletely, it regenerates like the last blade. That’s enough for certain gamers.

https://www.nintendolife.com/reviews/switch-eshop/last_blade_beyond_the_destiny

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