The 3DS shop is filled with casual games that you can pick up and play for a couple of minutes and be completely satisfied with. After playing Balloon Pop Remix, I was ready to call UFO Interactive a champion of casual games on the 3DS; but after playing Samurai G I might have to rethink things. Samurai G is a running game that doesn’t do much beyond running (and even the running isn’t overly interesting).
You play as a Samurai (possibly a gangster one considering the G) who is running through the landscape of feudal Japan, collecting coins. In the game you can only jump and swing your sword as your character automatically runs to the right. It’s a simple idea (and usually simple means good); but really, Samurai G feels a little too simple. There is no real depth or strategy to the game-play – just a bit of precise timing. The only thing remotely strategic is collecting coins. Once you have collected enough coins your Samurai turns into an unstoppable gold warrior and tears through everything in site. Turning gold and going crazy is a great (and welcome) change of pace in the game, but it’s just not enough to make the overall experience feel any better. On the plus side, the graphics are pretty good; no complaints there.
Considering that the game is just about running and jumping, there is really not much to talk about here. So instead, I’d like to shift focus to what could be added to Samurai G to make it even better. UFO Interactive: I like you, thats why I want to help. I am in no way saying that I know anything about game development; this is just my opinion on what would be awesome to see in the game.
It is very clear what this game is all about.
The first thing that I think would make the game amazing is to add a ton of power-ups that you can collect throughout the level. Things like: assist characters, new weapons, possibly a horse to ride (you know, things that will add a bit of strategy and importance to the running). The next suggestion that I have would be to add a bouncing system. While in the air the Samurai should be able to strike enemies from above and jump off of them to move greater distances. Finally, UFO Interactive, I think we should tone down the coin business. I get that it is the main drive to the game, but it should be more of a reward for hard work then an eventuality. Coins are so abundant in Samurai G that you don’t really have to do any work to achieve your gold form. If the coins were fewer and far between, the transformation would be a lot more meaningful and feel much more rewarding.
If you are into automatic running games, than Samurai G is a good and quick romp through the genre. But if you perfer your games to have more depth and strategy, then this game may not satisfy you. With a couple of additions to the game, Samurai G could be better. Right now, it just feels like a demo – which is fine, except that it costs people money (which is not cool from a value perspective). UFO Interactive needs to go back to the drawing board with this game because it has legs (ha!) and I’d love to see it live up its full potential.