Samurai Shodown V Perfect

Set in an alternative timeline by virtue of being a dream match, Kuroko seeks the strongest warriors to participate in a tournament that would be later revealed to be organized by Yoshitora himself. As the game was concurrently being developed along with Samurai Shodown 6, it is highly implied that the character stories in the game is a prelude to the events that would take place in the following installment.

Samurai Shodown V Perfect character selection screen.

ABOUTSamurai Shodown V Perfect, known as "Samurai Spirits Zero Special Full Version" in Japan, is the second upgraded version of Samurai Shodown V and considered a sequel to Samurai Shodown V Special. Samurai Shodown V Perfect was originally planned be the final game for the NeoGeo platform but ended up not being officially released. The title finally released in July 2020 as an exclusive title in the compilation package, Samurai Shodown NeoGeo Collection. An arcade version was announced in 2022.

If you played SSV Special, you've basically played this game.

After working on Samurai Shodown V Special, Director Kouji Takaya and Yuki Enterprise decided to begin development on a third and final update. Samurai Shodown V Perfect was meant to fix several gameplay issues still present in SSV Special and introduce new storylines for every character. However, at this time, SNK was unaware of the project and already began developing Samurai Shodown VI. As it would turn out, when SNK discovered the game was having a location test (in one single location), they immediately ordered SSV Perfect's cancellation. The game was pulled from location test so quickly that Director Kouji Takaya didn't even get a chance to watch location test participants try the game before it was pulled. watch people play before it was pulled.
Necrosoft Games director Brandon Sheffield and SNK employee Adam Laatz discovered a surviving copy of Samurai Shodown V Perfect around the time he was interviewing Kouji Takaya for Samurai Shodown: NeoGeo Collection. According to SNK, Samurai Shodown V Perfect is officially the final game to be made for the NeoGeo platform. The game was not yet localized properly at the time of the discovery, and it was thus reworked prior to its release in Samurai Shodown: NeoGeo Collection.


The final FINAL NeoGeo Game.

Certain finishing overkill moves had to be simplified to accommodate the epilogues for each character, due to the limited memory of the platform. Like its predecessor, the game uses whole-width fonts in the dialogue. Overkill moves were retained and not reduced to generic issen attacks (as what happened to the "censored version" of Samurai Shodown V Special) but they no longer dismember, maim or bisect enemies. Gaira's and Enja's was retained, Tam-Tam no longer causes the character's icon item to drop, Suija is no longer covered in blood, and Kusaregedo simply burps afterwards. Rimururu's, Nakoruru's and Yoshitora's were carried over as they did not involve mutilation.


Page Updated: March 17th, 2023
Developer(s): Yuki Enterprise, Digital Eclipse, exA-Arcadia  (Arcade)
Publisher(s): SNK Playmore
Platform(s): PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Arcade
Designer(s): Kouji Takada    Director
Artwork By: Shirou Ohno    Character Art
Release Date(s): July 28th, 2020        INT - in Samurai Shodown: NeoGeo Collection
July 30th, 2022        Asia - in Samurai Shodown: NeoGeo Collection
Characters Haohmaru, Ukyo, Hanzo, Nakoruru, Genjuro, Kyoshiro, Shizumaru, Gaira, Rimururu, Basara, Sogetsu, Kazuki, Tam Tam, Charlotte, Galford, Poppie, Jubei, Rera, Rasetsumaru, Suija, Enja, Yoshitora Tokugawa, Kusaregedo, Mina Majikina, Yumeji, Sankuro, Yunfei, Zankuro, Amakusa, Mizuki, Gaoh

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Related Games: Samurai Shodown V Special, Samurai Shodown V, Samurai Shodown 6, Samurai Shodown, Samurai Shodown 2, Samurai Shodown 3, Samurai Shodown 4, Samurai Shodown 64, Samurai Shodown 64 - Warriors Rage, Samurai Shodown Pocket, Samurai Shodown 2 Pocket, Samurai Shodown Warrior's Rage, Samurai Shodown Sen, Samurai Shodown Anthology, Samurai Shodown (2019), Guilty Gear XX Accent Core, Capcom Fighting Evolution

Gameplay Engine  8.0 / 10
Story / Theme  8.0 / 10
Overall Graphics  8.0 / 10
Animation  7.5 / 10
Music / Sound Effects  6.0 / 10
Innovation  5.0 / 10
Art Direction  9.0 / 10
Customization  7.5 / 10
Options / Extras  7.0 / 10
Intro / Presentation  6.5 / 10
Replayability / Fun  6.0 / 10
"Ouch" Factor  7.0 / 10
Characters  8.0 / 10

 7.0 / 10



Final Words:

So, I already reviewed Samurai Shodown V Special... Yeah, SSV Perfect is a very minor update to the game (which to me, still seems very unfinished as it is). In fact, the game never got out of location test phase, but was released in Samurai Shodown: NeoGeo Collection anyway.

Once again, SSV Special / Perfect definitely isn't my favorite Samurai Shodown game (by a long shot) in terms of presentation, visuals, or roster, but it does have one of the largest character rosters of the series and arguably is among "most playable" games in the franchise. 

SSV Perfect is an interesting and unexpected "bonus" as part of Samurai Shodown NeoGeo Collection, adding historical value to the package. However, the execution and the severe lack of actual new content leaves so much to be desired. In any case, the character artwork for the arcade version is pretty good!
~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen

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