October 21, 1600: The Battle of Sekigahara: East (Tokugawa) vs West (Ishida)
Winter 1614 - Summer 1615: Siege of Osaka Castle: Tokugawa vs Toyotomi
and many, many moreSome scenarios are "What if's," such as Nobunaga surviving Honnoji and uniting Japan, or Hideyoshi faking his death in 1598 and appearing at Sekigahara (both examples are their respective hidden "Dream Stage" battle). In other cases, some of the "Dream Stages" are just for fun, like Tadakatsu taking on all worthy warriors in a champion's tournament or Nohime and Oichi's beauty contest battle (made even funnier if played with the SW2: Xtreme Legends expansion).The voice acting is goofy at times (witness Hideyoshi declare, "Let's make our enemies beg us for peace!" and Bad Ass Honda Tadakatsu's borderline lisp), and the difficulty encompasses downright stupid allied NPC's and enemy officers who love to gang up on you* , but you'll learn something about Japanese history; just remember that Tokugawa Ieyasu did not actually fight the Battle of Sekigahara with a spear that shot cannon balls.The series encompasses:
See also Sengoku Basara - which is what many say these games would be like on drugs, and Pokémon Conquest which uses the character designs from Samurai Warriors 3. See also Nobunaga's Ambition, which uses the character designs from the series often it's gameplay is basis for Pokémon Conquest.
This franchise features the following tropes:
Aluminum Christmas Trees: Western neophyte players in particular might just be surprised at how much of what's presented in these games is based closely on historical fact.
For example, the "star-crossed lovers" arc for Oichi and Azai Nagamasa? Yep, that one's out of Japanese history, as is her death at Shizugatake, albeit the game has her fighting alongside Shibata Katsuie, who was her husband both before and after Nagamasa, instead of committing seppuku with him.
Awesome, but Impractical: Less Awesome but more fun, In SW2, Nene has a skill in which she can transform into any nearby character...even enemy ones. Yes, even those countless mooks you'll probably spend a lot of your time mercilessly butchering.
In SW2: Empires, custom characters using the sword, spear, naginata or Nene's moveset can use this skill too.
Bottomless Magazines: All of the gun-type weapons have unlimited ammunition and don't need to be reloaded manually by the player (but there is a token effort at animating reloads during combos). Generic NPC riflemen reload between shots, though.
Camera Abuse: In pre-rendered cutscenes, specially the first one of Oda or Noh, you can see blood splatter on the camera.
Cast Full of Pretty Boys: Somewhat justified in that this is a game that revolves around battles fought in feudal times, so it would be strange for there to be a particularly equal balance of the genders - indeed, that there are female characters taking part at all is, for the most part, unrealistic. On the other hand, it would take a Social Darwinist of Britannian proportions to claim that the upper classes ought to all be so damn pretty.
Catch Phrase: The characters' personal variations of "Enemy Officer Defeated".
Cross Over: PokemonConquest, in the sense that the character designs for Nobunaga, Oichi, Mitsuhide, Shingen and Kenshin are all lifted directly from Samurai Warriors 3.
''Beeeehold the castle, that is built in just one day! What genius could have done this, you say? It's Hideyoshi, Hideyoshi we praise! Who built the castle in just one day, wheee! It's Hideyoshi, Hideyoshi we praise! He built a castle in just one day!!
Escort Mission: Hampered by bad AI, par for the course with any others.
Particularly noticeable in the first game if playing on the Oda side at Honnouji as anyone except Nobunaga, as when he's a NPC he absolutely insists on killing any and all enemy peons in the way instead of high-tailing it to the escape point.
Flanderization: Par for the course with Koei and expanding character rosters.
Guide Dang It: Getting your ultimate weapons. All of them involve doing very difficult things at very specific points in the battle on Hard or greater difficulty. And there's no hint whatsoever in the game itself about what you're supposed to do.
3 is a bit better about this: you just have to complete every (usually optional) tactical advantage objective in a certain battle on Hard or above. Which battle is still guesswork, however.
Historical Badass Upgrade: Most of the cast. Granted, some of those ancient warriors were actually pretty badass on their own....
Historical Villain Upgrade: Fuuma wasn't a nice man at first, but he certainly isn't a chaos-worshipping Troll in real life. Also averted with newcomer from Chronicles 2nd, Yagyu Munenori. He's been a victim of the trope so many times (especiallyOnimusha), but for his debut, he's a willing supporter of the Tokugawa clan to end the war, and is all around a just, virtuous, badass swordsman.
Holler Button - The ability to summon a horse, exclusive to Keiji, Yukimura and Toshiie. If you don't have one, they will summon a generic one.
Made universal from the third installment. You can even summon a generic horse out of nowhere if you didn't start with one.
Improbable Weapon User: Yoshimoto Imagawa kicks a Kemari(ancient oriental soccer ball) in almost all of his moves. His main weapon is a simple cutlass/sabre though. Oichi uses a Kendama(child's puzzle toy) in her first appearances, but from the third game on, she switches to a bunch of barbed chakra. Shingen Takeda uses a fan. That one did actually occur historically, although only once, in a single incident.
But the few that do make it true to the trope. Akechi's Specials, for example, allows him to quickly flash past an enemy and damage them, or to counter for great damage.
Key Stone Army: Scripted twists (such as body doubles and dramatic entrances) aside, as soon as the commander of the opposing force retreats clutching his side/keels over dramatically, the rest of his army beats it regardless of numbers.
Of course, with how many of them you were likely cutting down before defeating the commander, it's amazing they wait that long to get out of your sight.
Leeroy Jenkins: If you're not the one Leeroy-ing into the crowd, expect one or more of the AI-controlled officers to charge recklessly and then necessitate you bailing them out. There are even a few stages that penalize you for getting ahead of yourself.
And a very unusual case of the game forcing you into one: at the end of Yukimura's story mode, he decides the final battle a lost cause, the game invalidates the defeat conditions and declares everyone but you expendable, a path straight to the enemy camp (but swimming in enemy soldiers) opens up, and in SW3 your items are disabled. Why push you down the road of a totally reckless charge? Because historically, he actually did that.
Name Order Confusion: The western releases are bad about this, as Koei's other games tend to have the the surnames first and given names second but in Samurai Warriors given names are written before surnames.
Very Loosely Based on a True Story: This fluctuates with each game, but it keeps certain points very much intact - namely the deaths of Nobunaga, Mitsuhide, and Hideyoshi are always kept at when they're supposed to be, unless you're playing as them.