Bushido (Firebird) Review | Computer & Video Games - Everygamegoing


By Firebird
Commodore 64

Published in Computer & Video Games #98


Rife was velly hard in early Feudal Japan. Not only did they have freezing winters and a strangling class system, but they also had a severe dose of "Bushido". Bushido was the code followed by all warriors; basically, it meant if you lost a battle, you had to remove your innards with a sharp implement or retire to a monastery, where lots of people would laugh at you until you died.

Luckily, it's the 20th Century, and you're only playing a computer game based on the real thing. It's set in Shimosa Province, head-butting ground for the Genji and Taira, two opposing clans. As one of the head honchos in the Garia house, your mission is to send a lone fighter to infiltrate the Taira fortress and kick some enemy ass.

There are eight agents to choose from, from a Buddhist Monk to a Mountain Warrior, all of whome have some balance between guile and aggression. They can be trained to master their own best skill and get handy at others. They also carry a magical belt, so that should they be mortally wounded, they're transported back to base to recuperate.

The fortress is split up into flick-screen rooms which scroll (slightly) depending on the direction you go in. This allows a much more detailed character to be used, and gives the impression of having a larger play area. Whichever you pick, he's very quick to move through the 3D environment.

The action is standard arcade adventure fare: kill people and search rooms for items which make progress a lot easier. There are also plenty of potions and special items such as wands, chests and hidden exits to find, and these make the game good where it could have been mediocre. Combat is the only disappointment: it isn't really complex enough, even though there are a wide number of weapons with different hit points and control difficulties.

The music is very Zenji-esque in places, and even though it's not the most amazing tune ever, it manages to capture the right atmosphere without being irritating. Much the same could be said for Bushido as a whole: it's fast and playable - not as good as The Last Ninja 2, but still well worth looking at.


A good oriental arcade adventure, just lacking the extra challenge that would put it in the same league as The Last Ninja 2.

Gordon Houghton