The Last Blade: Beyond the Destiny
STORY:  The Last Blade is set in 1863 during the Bakumatsu, the final years of the Tokugawa shogunate where a clash of ideologies were fighting to decide Japan's new society. Long before humanity existed, in a far off time of myth, death was an unknown, equally distant concept, but when death first came to the world, the "Messenger from Afar" was born. With time, the Sealing Rite was held in order to seal Death behind Hell's Gate. At that time, two worlds, one near and one far, were born. Thus the history of life and death began.

Half a year has passed since Suzaku's madness, and the underworld is still linked by a great portal. Kagami's great sin is still heard as if ringing from the heavens. Our world has been called upon. Legends of long ago told of the sealing of the boundary between the two worlds. The Sealing Rite would be necessary to hold back the spirits of that far away world.
However, the Sealing Rite brings together the power of the Four Gods and Sealing Maiden, for the first time properly completing the ritual. To find the Sealing Maiden, Genbu began searching in the center of the world, from which all things begin. At the same time in the underworld, in the depths of darkness, many spirits conspired, plotting to hinder the Sealing Rite. They had but one wish, to be reborn into our world.

Great  artwork!

The first and only handheld version of SNK's The Last Blade is found on the Neo Geo Pocket Color. The graphics and overall art style are similar to those seen in Samurai Shodown! 2: Pocket for the Neo Geo Pocket Color, as characters are proudly represented in chibi style. The 2D sprites animate fairly well in this version, but of course are a far cry from their original appearances in Last Blade or Last Blade 2.

Yes... we must. 

Last Blade
is a much different game on the NGPC, and definitely feels watered down... quite a few characters are unfortunately missing as well. Those that did make the cut, however, are represented quite well and retain many of their recognizable moves & mannerisms.

For a Neo Geo Pocket Color game, the game's presentation is actually well done. Last Blade: Beyond The Destiny seems to push the NGPC to its graphical limitations (which isn't much, but fans of 2D sprite graphics will appreciate the visuals). The cool stage intros have returned, and there's some cool dialogue between characters before the fight as well.

If cuteness could kill...

The gameplay is definitely simpler and more streamlined than the deeper system found in the NeoGeo titles, but this "pocket" version of Last Blade is a respectable "casual" fighting game. Last Blade Pocket also has an impressive variety of modes for a portable fighting game, including: Story, Survival, Time Attack, Training, and even a few secret modes.

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Page Updated: January 24th, 2013
Developer(s): SNK
Publisher(s): SNK
Platform(s): Neo Geo Pocket
Release Date(s): March 31st, 2000
Characters Kaede, Moriya, Yuki, Akari, Amano, Shigen, Zantetsu, Washizuka, Rekka, Genbu, Kojoroh, Kouryu


Featured Video:

Related Games: The Last Blade, The Last Blade 2, Samurai Shodown!: Pocket, Samurai Shodown! 2: Pocket, King of Fighters R-1, King of Fighters R-2, Fatal Fury: 1st Contact, Gals Fighters, SNK VS Capcom: Match of the Millennium

Gameplay Engine  7.5 / 10
Story / Theme  7.5 / 10
Overall Graphics  7.5 / 10
Animation  7.0 / 10
Music / Sound Effects  7.0 / 10
Innovation  6.5 / 10
Art Direction  7.5 / 10
Customization  5.0 / 10
Options / Extras  5.0 / 10
Intro / Presentation  6.5 / 10
Replayability / Fun  5.5 / 10
"Ouch" Factor  7.0 / 10
Characters  8.0 / 10

 7.0 / 10



Final Words:

The NGPC version of Last Blade probably wasn't the most popular game on the system, but was pound-for-pound one of the best fighting games on the system. It's a great tribute to the Last Blade series for fans and even has some solid gameplay for a "cutesy" fighting game. As a stand alone fighting game, however, it does seem lacking (especially when compared to the epic Match of the Millenium).

I remember pulling off some pretty cool combos in this game... and I have fun with it for a while. Sadly, Last Blade: Beyond The Destiny was one of the last games to ever be released for the fan-loved Neo Geo Pocket Color.
~TFG Webmaster  

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