First Samurai

Action 1991 Dos Dosbox Vivid Image Oriental Historical

The kind of samurai that gets owned by...cats!

Here's another great sidescroller for The Angry Video Game Nerd, if, of course, he had any interest in DOS aberrations! Alright, I'll tone it down a notch, and let you know that, contrary to popular belief, First Samurai is not as maligned (fancy words alert!) as some would have us believe. With a modicum of patience you can actually trudge through it, maybe even have a laugh at its expense. So, with this one it's not as much about perverse difficulty levels or unfathomable, error of judgment type level design, as much as it is a question of choices that don't make much sense. For instance, some of the platforms are built in such a manner so as to look as if your character's legs are protruding through the granite they seem to be made of. It's I would say, just a half witted choice, but it doesn't hinge playability. It's just that until you realize that, you'll think that some platforms are just out of reach, or need to be jumped upon form some other vantage point, which increases your confusion and... irritability! Also, First Samurai makes the mistake of underequipping you, while making some enemies a little too powerful. I mean, you are a mighty samurai, but a cat can drain your health like crazy! And, until you find some better weapon, you'll be dealing with cats and butterflies and swallows with your fists which is, well, I like to call that amazing. Other than that you have the underpinnings of a lazily produced game: lots of repeating tiles, lots of glitches due to inattentive platform collision detection testing and well, the kind of game that kind of gets old too soon. But, for five minutes, if you like to swear a bit and need a virtual entity to direct this avalanche of slurs to, First Samurai will be a great target! If, however you want to play a good samurai themed game, try the top down action Sword of the Samurai, an alright Zeldaesque type of production.

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