Alternative Character Interpretation: Word of God confirms that the Demigods see Pride Mantra as the most powerful mantra, hence why those who wield it (like Deus) are assigned as the leader of the Eight Guardian Generals. While this is proven to be the case with Deus through most of the game, is Pride Mantra legitimately the most powerful or is it Cultural Posturing put in place pragmatically because ego-stroking makes those with an affinity to it more powerful?
Best Level Ever: Episode 5, Episode 11, True Episode 18, and Episode 22 are considered to be some of the best levels in Asura's Wrath, with Episode 22 considered to be one of the best final levels in gaming history.
Catharsis Factor: Oh hell yes. Basically every villain in this game is a smug, self-satisfied prick who believes Asura to be beneath them or a violent monstrosity that preys on the weak. Obviously, Asura proves them dead wrong every time.
Critical Dissonance: It received mixed reviews by the gaming press, but the fans on the other hand really like the game.
Complete Monster: Chakravartin, the Big Bad of the entire story, is the nigh-omnipotent creator-god of Gaea and a smug, cold, uncaring sociopath who attempts to destroy and recreate the world constantly because he considers it beneath him to keep the planet's denizens safe from harm. To this end, Chakravartin's attempts to find an heir resulted in his creation of the monstrous Gohma that have destroyed so many innocent lives so he can test the resolve of the Gods. This also resulted in the Gods using humans as slaves and harvesting their souls and Mantra for their own powers. All the death and destruction in the game, over the course of over 10,000 years are all the fault of Chakravartin, solely so he could find someone else to do his job for him, and would kill and restart everything until he got the result he wanted. Despite trying to claim himself as well-intentioned, Chakravartin's claims are shown to be the hollow words of a cruel egomaniac, and once defied, the true monster he really is comes out.
Cult Classic: Slowly becoming one of these, due to relatively poor sales and mixed critical reaction. Not unlike Ōkami, another Capcom-related game with poor sales that adapts a subset of Japanese and Chinese Mythology. To put this in perspective, Asura has been a Top Ranking pick for the next in the Marvel vs. Capcom games since his games debut, despite it not being very popular at the time.
Disappointing Last Level: The vanilla game has "True Episode 18", which is exactly the same as the original Episode 18, being the same episode with the original setpieces, gameplay, and boss fight, with nothing added except a Sequel Hook for the Part IV DLC. Averted with Part IV in question, however, which wraps up the story and gives the player one last unique, high-stakes fight, along with giving the QTEs more variety.
Enjoy The Story, Skip The Game: The game is perfectly aware that it is just a glorified cutscene. The gameplay is very simplistic and repetitive, but it isn't the main interest of the game, which is essentially an interactive Anime about an overly muscular six-armed god punching planet-sized monsters in space accompanied by Classical Music. Some of the game's DLC chapters are literally anime shorts with no gameplay more interactive than occasional Quick Time Events.
Ensemble Dark Horse: Augus is one of the most popular characters, and he dies halfway through the game.
Epileptic Trees: Some fans fresh off of Street Fighter X Tekken like to believe that this is where Ryu ended up after he was evaporated by Pandora. In addition, some also believe that Ryu ended up in none other than Smash Bros. after Akuma kicked him into the horizon, though this is usually treated like a joke.
Fan Nickname: The Awesome Button for the Burst button. This is because something awesome happens whenever you're prompted to press it.
Game-Breaker: The Obliterator Gauge. The Unlimited Gauge is always full, meaning Asura won't be taking any damage whatsoever, and can spam the heavy attack. For Yasha, he can be incredibly fast all the time. The only thing hindering it is that you have to press LT/L2 button to activate it (except on Easy), but it's not much of a problem.
It's also somewhat of a Bragging Rights Reward, as you need to complete all episodes with the life-reducing Mortal Gauge to unlock it.
Genius Bonus: The reason why the quick-time events feel geniunely impactful and awesome are because the prompts you’re meant to follow and/or mash repeatedly in time are due to each quick-time event corresponding to the buttons of your actions during the combat segments, thus enhancing the feeling that you are doing what Asura would be doing in a given situation, which not only makes the quick-time events more believable, but also averts Damn You, Muscle Memory! for players.
Deus was the leader of the Eight Guardian Generals fighting Vlitra and the Gohma, but believed Vlitra would one day be too powerful to stop. Assassinating The Emperor, Deus framed Asura while having his wife murdered and his daughter Mithra—who can channel and amplify Mantra—kidnapped. After killing Asura, Deus renamed the Generals "The Seven Deities" and created a worldwide cult with few dissenters that believed being killed by the Deities would lead their souls to Nirvana. In truth, the souls were gathered to power the Karma Fortress' Brahmastra to finally kill Vlitra. Trillions of souls were gathered over 12,000 years by the time Asura revived to eventually fight Deus and only by working with his brother-in-law Yasha are they able to beat him. With absolute conviction in his power and his ideals while hating being Emperor and what he has done, Deus is both one of Asura's smartest and most sympathetic foes.
Augus is one of the Eight Guardian Generals who follows Deus out of a promise for challenge in combat. Training young fellow Demigods Asura and Yasha, Augus spends thousands of years grooming the former into his ultimate opponent. Aiding Deus in his plot to rid the world of the Gohma and even betraying Asura's wife, Augus faces down against his former pupil in the glorious combat he desires, dying remarking it was "one hell of a battle" proudly.
Olga crossed it in episode 12, when she bombed the village and killed the girl that resembled Mithra with no remorse whatsoever.
Karlow crosses it by murdering a bunch of villagers after demanding them to beg for mercy, and when Asura demands an explanation, Karlow boasts that he's above giving him one.
Sergei went well past it when he killed Durga and kidnapped Mithra, but it gets even worse when we find out he enjoyed doing it and is gleeful at the prospect of Asura's Anger as a result.
Never Live It Down: A more humorous example. Asura's "I'LL NEVER FORGIVE YOU FOR MAKING MY DAUGHTER CRY" speech is badass to all hell, but a rather hilarious fandom reaction to this is "good luck getting anyone to even think of dating Mithra now."
The deaths of Karlow, Sergei, and Olga. Karlow gets crushed inside an escape pod (made worse by the fact that we see the whole thing, and it takes a while, as in it slowly closes on him as Asura crushes it and he pleads for him to stop), Sergei has his stomach slashed open (it didn't kill him, and he started shouting in joy; Asura smashes his head like a grape), and Olga gets diced by the Golden Spider's web.
May not be diced exactly, but it definitely seems that her spine gets snapped or otherwise broken.
The end of episode 11.5 where Asura's power starts going out of control is quite graphical.
Sergei speaking enthusiastically with ecstasy after getting gored up by Asura. Not to mention the same look of ecstasy he has when making souls migrate up to his septentrion ship.
Chakravartin's ultimate form is slightly unnerving, with a whited out version of his previous body seeming to be over a black skeleton, with it only covering the upper half of his face, making him look like an unholy fusion between Frieza and Ultron.
During the final boss fight, at various points, you'll be in Asura's POV, one of those in when he's lying on the ground and the True Final Boss is repeatedly punching/clawing at him. It's very brief but quite nightmary.
After Asura and Yasha fail to defeat Chakravartin, he states that since Asura has disappointed him that he will destroy and recreate the planet, then start the cycle all over again. He states that he has done this before in the past, giving the implication all the lives lost over of the course of the game are nothing more than a drop in the bucket compared to the number who have died in the past thanks to Chakravartin's evil.
Older Than They Think: Part of the art decisions in this game is the idea to split each chapter into structures akin to episodes of an anime, complete with Eye Catches, To Be Continued messages, episode previews and credits that run at the end of each "episode". What many people don't realize (due to the abysmal advertising fromBandai Namco Entertainment) is that CyberConnect2 already did a small-scale version of this with Solatorobo: Red the Hunter, also separating each chapter with "To Be Continued" arrows (styled after JoJo's Bizarre Adventure's, no less), animated intros that appear after the prologue and every time you boot up the game afterwards (in fact, there are two animated intros for each half), and full credits sequences that plays at the end of each half of the game, complete with vocal themes (though the end of the first half uses an instrumental). However, as mentioned, it's a lot more subdued there than it is here due to Solatorobo being a Nintendo DS title, which in turn can make the anime-like structures in that game to be more akin to two OVAs rather than two full seasons of an anime series.
Shocking Moments: The game as a whole keeps delivering these moments, starting from the first real boss (The giant buddha-looking guy with the Fingerpoke Of Doom) to the one of the last the being calling itself God that dwarfs galaxies.
Signature Scene: Asura vs. Wyzen's country-sized finger. It was used in 2 different trailers for the game as well as a TV ad in Japan.
Strawman Has a Point: While he turned to be wrong, when Yasha tries to talk Deus out of the original plan to kill Vlitra, considering the fact this involves putting faith in Asura, who Yasha beat and he himself still proved a lot weaker than Deus, one can hardly blame him for thinking that it was a bad idea.
However, as more trailers showcase the setting, story, and gameplay, this perception of the game is slowly fading. Many agree that the blend of Hindu myth with a coating of Sci-Fi does wonders to keep the setting fresh instead of the mythology by itself, and by the trailers alone, many agree that Asura is much more of a likeable protagonist than Kratos ever was.
The abundance of Quick Time Events over traditional gameplay in the demo has rubbed some gamers the wrong way.
That One Boss: Every boss becomes this with the Mortal Gauge equipped, even on Easy. The first encounter with Yasha in Episode 6 is exceptionally frustrating, and they only get harder from there.
Without it, many cite Vlitra's Core, who does a ridiculous amount of damage with its attacks, even on Easy.
Many of the bosses in the DLC are a bit harder than the main story, but the Gohma Squasher in episode 20 is exceptionally ridiculous. He attacks incredibly fast and at a much longer range, and the attacks are often unpredictable and highly damaging, and he spins away really fast if you use a special move while he's knocked down. The Gohma Squasher boss by itself is often hated for being rather dragged out, but here, he's much harder, even more so then Vlitra Core. Worse still, you're playing as Yasha, who doesn't gain the Unlimited mode invulnerability, making this a constant dodge or die battle.
Vindicated by History: When Asura's Wrath was initially released in early 2012, the game didn't sell very well at all, and while the Japanese gaming press nearly unanimously praised the game, the criticism across the rest of the world was mixed at best. In spite of controversy concerning the DLC final part of the game, the game has gone on to become one of the most underrated games of the year and has a cult following to the point that it's considered to be one of the best games Capcom has ever made or published since the disbandment of Clover Studios, which is saying a lot.
Some of Giant Bomb's editors were even considering the game in the running for Game of the Year for 2012. That says something compared to its earlier reception.
Today, many fans and critics as a whole see the game as way ahead of its time, in many ways being one of the games alongside The Walking Dead (Telltale) as one of THE games that helped make cinematic styled storytelling in games take a major leap forward in how it intertwines story with gameplay. Many have also claimed that the way it did Quick Time Events and Action Commands as being something truly special, in that it never felt mundane or unfair like many games before it, and instead as feeling like a legit badass without giving the illusion you aren't really doing anything.