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Video Game / Kenseiden

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Kenseiden ("Tale of the Sword Saint") is a game for the Sega Master System about a swordmaster named Hayato who must travel across Japan and defeat the evil lord Yonensai. It is notable for being somewhat nonlinear, such that the player can choose to go straight for Yonensai or go through all of Japan.

There was a Korean version which changed the map to be of Korea and altered the game graphics to be less offensive to Korean sensibilities (such as the whole samurai theme).

This game provides examples of the following:

  • Burn Baby Burn: "A cauldron of fire envelops the enchanted castle, scorching the heavens."
  • But Now I Must Go: "Thou beginst to journey in silence to a place unknown, with no one knowing thy deepest thoughts."
  • Cool Sword: "Thou hast the sword of Dragon Lord."
  • Dem Bones: Skeletons are common enemies.
  • Drunken Master: The hero regains health by getting jars of sake. The emergency health reserve item is a jar of nuclear sake.
  • Giant Spider: Another common enemy, frequently with the heads of women.
  • The Greatest Story Never Told: "Unbeknownst to anyone, thou has killed the monster and thy battle is done."
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: The hero is this, except when practicing the technique learned after "thou canst hast the power of a berserker."
  • In a Single Bound: "Thou have learnt the art of jumping high."
  • Mask Power: Literally, Yonensai is invincible until two of his masks have been knocked off.
  • Master Swordsman: The hero, the "kensei" of the title.
  • Spam Attack: The technique for when "thou canst hast the power of a berserker" involves repeatedly swinging the sword to both the front and the back.
  • Training from Hell: The optional training levels, naturally. These consist of Platform Hell obstacle courses while being assaulted by a Rain of Arrows from all directions.
  • Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: "Thou have learnt to slash with your sord." [sic]
  • You Have Researched Breathing: For instance, the hero must defeat the first boss before "Thou have learnt to slash with your sord," as if the hero's attacks up to this point were not slashing. In actuality this indicates that he can do a powerful downwards slash... which is still a technique that should be within his repertoire. Also, the hero must learn that "thou canst kill by stealth" before he can attack while crouching, another technique that he really should already know how to do.
  • Youkai: Naturally, for a mystical Japan setting.