Hideyoshi's unification of Japan has crumbled under a coup led by Tokugawa Ieyasu, and now the land is again at war. The Eastern Army is led by Ieyasu himself, in a bid to unify Japan with the power of bonds and friendship. Meanwhile, Mitsunari, a fervent follower of Hideyoshi, has vowed to bring Ieyasu to justice and leads the Western Army in this purpose. All in all, 16 characters are playable and compete for victory, along with a hundred non-playable allies that can accompany you in battle.
The supreme commander of the Eastern Army, Ieyasu was a servant of Hideyoshi until he realized that his lord's brutal ways would never allow for a peaceful nation. He killed Hideyoshi and now wishes to unify Japan in a manner that will allow for a prosperous
Ieyasu fights with his knuckles and all of his techniques can be charged by holding the buttons for extra power and/or effect. His style is pretty straightforward but his abilities make him extremely good at both killing hordes and headbutting bosses to death. His taunt allows him to pull up the hood of his vest. While the hood is up, the time required to charge his attacks to maximum power is reduced. His second Super Art, Steelhead, is extremely strong when at maximum level. His first Super Art, Tokugawa Might, is an extremely effective tool for racking up combo numbers.
Tokugawa Ieyasu's best and most trusted friend, Honda Tadakatsu is known by all as the Strongest of the Sengoku. He resembles a Gundam and is easily the largest character in the series, even more than Toyotomi Hideyoshi. Tadakatsu faithfully serves Ieyasu, most notably by mauling his enemies and flying around with his jetpack and calling down lightning bolts. He's also an excellent Shogi player.
Tadakatsu fights with a gigantic drill-spear. His abilities consist of "modes" that can be activated and combined together to create new effects. His fighting style is extremely mobile, which is both a blessing and a curse. While running, Tadakatsu can break boxes by simply touching them. While the Special Art Support Mode is active, Tadakatsu doesn't need to worry about his combo counter resetting. Dash Mode effects (charged attack only): +Support Mode adds a vacuum effect, +Flight Mode doubles the charge distance, +Electromagnetic Mode adds a lightning-element and extra power. Support Mode can be combined with either Flight or EM. Artillery Mode effects: +Flight Mode for mobile artillery on ground & air and can continue to attack while blocking, +Electromagnetic Mode for powered-up electric shots. Tadakatsu is immune to knockdowns. Because of his size, Tadakatsu cannot ride on horses. This makes winning the Oshu race against Date difficult. Use Flight Mode and the accessory that makes you start with full Hero Time to win... or don't bother too much.
A cool and stylish leader who's known as the Dragon of Oshu. While attempting to attack the Toyotomi at Osaka Castle, Masamune was stopped and soundly defeated by Ishida Mitsunari. The Dragon is now out for Mitsunari's blood and has allied with Tokugawa Ieyasu for this express purpose.
Masamune fights with his six swords. His abilities are pretty straightforward, but he can switch to "Six Claws" mode, which forgoes all defenses in order to use all of his swords at the same time; during that time his power is increased and his abilities change. He will also be able to cancel the finishing poses in his skills by tightly chaining the pressing time of the skill buttons. His style makes him a fair all-rounder, although his Basara is still the weakest of all the characters. Six Claws can be activated in one of three ways: after performing a Basara/Ultimate Basara, by using his second Super Art, or by equipping his four personal items. However, he cannot defend or dodge while Six Claws is active. His joke weapon has the hidden effect of increasing his dash speed.
Little is known about the legendary ninja Fūma Kotarō, save that he is currently being employed by the Hōjō Clan. He's just as deadly as he is silent and makes it a point to ensure that no one pierces his shroud of mystery. For some reason he keeps running into Tsuruhime...
Kotaro fights with a pair of ninjato. Unlike the other characters, Kotaro is an aerial fighter and all of his abilities will propel him into the air or keep him afloat. With some skill, it's quite possible to never have to touch the ground when playing as him. He can fly through the air by pressing the jump button twice. Cancel this air dash with a normal art, otherwise you'll have an annoyingly long landing animation. As you long as either fly or perform a single normal art, you can re-use any super or special art in the air. Super -> Normal -> Super, etc. His second Super Art, Shuriken, is his most versatile against both crowds and bosses.
Maeda Keiji was an extremely close friend of Hideyoshi. When the latter turned into a brutal conqueror after killing the woman that he loved, Keiji attempted unsuccessfully to convince his friend to return to his old self. The death of Hideyoshi has left him troubled and though he maintains his facade of love, peace and diplomacy, he's actually running away from his problems and uses any excuse to not deal with them.
Keiji fights with a giant nodachi. His abilities can all be canceled to produce new effects. This allows Keiji to perform infinite combos, altough it can be extremely confusing to figure out what abilities cancel into what effects. Once per map, he can also cancel his death just like he would any of his attacks to stand back up. "Ah!... Just kidding!" Each time he taunts, an extra attack is added to his next Basara. The extra attacks stack, so it is possible to perform a ridiculously long Basara if you spam taunt in a corner to build it up.
Leader of the Crows of Saika, a mercenary band. The Saika ally themselves with whomever can bring them either the most money or the most fame. Because of their skill with firearms, they are highly sought after throughout the land. Unfortunately for Ishida Mitsunari, when he attempts to ally them, Tokugawa Ieyasu gets there first.
Magoichi fights using firearms. Her different abilities switch the weapons that she uses in her normal attacks. In addition, the magnum and shotgun can be charged up to deliver ridiculously powerful blasts. Charged magnum shots are her best tool for killing specific targets. Evade after performing a charged magnum or shotgun shot to eliminate (magnum) or reduce (shotgun) the reload animation and chain charged shots very quickly. Charged shots count as the first attack of a normal art, meaning that Halberds are a good accessory for her. Her joke weapon has the hidden effect of making her normal arts with the magnum pierce through enemies.
Tsuruhime is a young oracle with the power to divine the future, which makes her a valuable asset in the current war. She's ridiculously naive, optimistic and cheery. She currently chases after her "Twilight Ninja", who has repeatedly saved her from danger. Yoshitsugu had seemingly secured her help in the war, until she realised his deceptions, which led to her siding with Tokugawa Ieyasu.
Tsuruhime fights with a bow. Her particular trait is the option to time the release of her abilities to produce powered-up effects. She starts off weak, but quickly picks up the pace once she acquires her abilities and turns into a pretty good killing machine. If you time her normal arts properly, she can delivery a flurry of arrows. You basically want to hit the normal arts button at the last moment to achieve this effect, else she'll only perform a short combo. The Super Art Infinite Arrow can be permanently maintained by performing any of her Special Arts and releasing the button at the flash. This basically refreshes Infinite Arrow as long as you don't miss the timing. Her second Super Art, Pure of Heart, can be aimed at both allied and enemy troops. At maximum level, Tsuruhime can refill her basara gauge within seconds. Note that the recharge effect is active even when performing her basara art. You can technically pop multiple basara arts within seconds of each other. Her taunt lightly damages charmed troops and sends them flying up. It can also pop the bubbles produced by her third Super Art.
Loyal servant of Hideyoshi, who he regarded as family, now the supreme commander of the Western Army. Mitsunari puts loyalty above everything else in a near obsessive manner, so when Tokugawa Ieyasu killed Hideyoshi it sent him into a hellish rage that won't subside until he either kills Ieyasu or dies. Mitsunari is begrudgingly amassing an army to match Tokugawa Ieyasu's, although he does not care at all about conquest and unification.
Mitsunari fights with a katana. His abilities are focused around multi-hit attacks and can be followed up with homing teleportations. Quick fingers are needed to really bring out his potential. Unfortunately, his super skill Decapitate is bugged. Be very careful about using it: Enemies that open doors or activate triggers when killed are likely to bug out when Decapitate is used on them. Perform a single normal art right before any of his super or special arts to remove the start-up lag. Use his Forward + Triangle special art to remove the start-up lag of his super and special arts. You can perform the Depression special art in very rapid succession by alternating between Flash -> Depression + Flash Effect -> Flash Ishida Mitsunari's personal items have the additional effect of making him start Reverence at full speed, but also of increasing his top speed, eventually making him faster than a horse.
Ōtani Yoshitsugu is Ishida Mitsunari's closest friend and adviser. Most of the Western Army operations are left to him, as Mitsunari simply does not care for this kind of work. He suffers from leprosy, which has left him bitter and resentful of the world. Though he is helping Mitsunari with his quest for revenge, Yoshitsugu has his own plans... fortunately, they more or less coincide with Mitsunari's. For now, that is.
Yoshitsugu fights from atop of floating palanquin using large, flying prayer beads. His abilities have the unique property of cursing the enemies, making them suffer additional effects from all of his abilities. His play style is great for handling hordes, but doesn't quite work against bosses. His special arts create curse zones at the end of the attack. Each art creates the zone at a different location (note: you need to hold the art's buttons to produce the curse zone) Holding the normal art button down creates a rapidly expanding curse zone in front him. You can still move around to curse more enemies with one zone.
Sanada Yukimura! Oyakata-sama! Yukimura! OYAKATA-SAMA!
Unfortunately, lord Shingen has fallen terribly ill and it is his apprentice, Yukimura, who must lead the forces of the Shingen Clan. Yukimura lived and fought only for his lord's dreams, but with no goals of his own. Now, with his beloved Shingen on the verge of death, he is incapable of leading his army properly and is plagued by defeat after defeat. Worse yet, Tokugawa Ieyasu, a former student of Shingen, is set on conquering Japan. In order to become the true successor of Shingen's will, Yukimura joins Ishida Mitsunari to oppose Ieyasu.
Yukimura fights with two spears. He's a very simple character, but his abilities are pretty effective. His gameplay is very easy to master and he packs a solid punch, making him a great character to start playing with. While running, Yukimura can perform a single normal art and resume his run without interruption. The Tiger Cannon Super Art is an extremely effective boss killer. At any time, holding the normal art button will execute an explosive lunge.
Nothing ever goes right for Kanbei. He once plotted to kill Hideyoshi in order to be the one to rule over Japan, but Ishida Mitsunari uncovered his plans and had him imprisoned. He is plagued with terrible luck and every single one of his plans tends to fail or worse yet backfire. His latest endeavor was to use the chaos of the war to kill both Tokugawa Ieyasu and Ishida Mitsunari, but instead he got forced into being Ōtani Yoshitsugu's punching bag.
Kuroda Kanbei fights using the ball and chain he is bound to. His gameplay revolves around using evades to cancel that start-up lag on his moves. His abilities tend to have pretty ridiculous range, which is offset by his extremely slow walking speed. While running, Kanbei can break boxes by simply touching them. Hold the normal art button to make him spin his ball around, but let go of the button before he becomes dizzy... Evading before any art removes the start-up lag. Evading after any art removes the post-attack lag.
Mōri Motonari is a fairly young leader who's sole objective is to protect the interests the Mori Clan. The entire war has no meaning to him and he only pledges his support to Ishida Mitsunari under the condition that his territory will remain independent. A brilliant tactician, Motonari regards his own troops as expandable pawns to be sacrificed in the name of victory.
Motonari fights with a ring blade. His abilities are based on setup and preparation: most of them create objects on the battlefield that have synergistic effects. His fighting style can be pretty challenging at first and even make him seem useless, but he can dish out tremendous damage that does not require his attention once setup. Holding the normal art button down makes him spin his ring blade; this can be done at any time during a normal art combo. Mōri Motonari's taunt can be combined with Decoy to detonate the decoy prematurely, or be combined with Super Art Brainwash to turn the converted enemies into kamikaze bombs. His taunt is extremely short and can easily be spammed for basara boosts without being interrupted. The Book of Trash Talk accessory is excellent with him. The Barrier special art can be used like a mirror when combined with Super Art Ray. Terribly effective with two parallel barriers. The Barrier special art can be used with Super Art Trap to make the traps bounces around and increase in size and power. Terribly effective with two parallel barriers. The Barrier special art can be used with the Archer special art to create a stream of bouncing arrows. Terribly effective with two parallel barriers.
Chōsokabe Motochika is a pirate who prides himself on the happiness of his people. Unfortunately, he and Mōri Motonari are neighbors and both claim to be the true owner of the sea in the area, which has led to constant conflicts. Following a long trip, Motochika returns to his lands only to find ruins and devastation... seemingly at the hands of his friend, Tokugawa Ieyasu. Motochika gets roped into joining Ishida Mitsunari's army in order to bring Ieyasu to justice... but did Ieyasu really do such a horrible thing?
Chōsokabe Motochika fights with a ship anchor. His abilities are all pretty straightforward with no particular traits. He's a good horde killer, but thanks to one of his moves he's also an amazing boss killer. The Heave Ho special art can paralyze every boss, save for Honda Tadakatsu and Ōtani Yoshitsugu, for an extended period of time. The first Super Art, Nine Tails, can be interrupted by spamming the triangle button to use Chain Shot, which removes the post-attack lag. The Rigging Swinging special art can be used in the air and can be stringed together for rapid movement. Spider man!
Oichi is Oda Nobunaga's sister, and under the rule of her brother suffered much abuse and torture. She's a broken shell of what little self she used to have, pulled forward into battle by the remnants of Nobunaga's army under the title of Demon Queen. Unfortunately, she crosses paths with Ōtani Yoshitsugu, who takes advantage of her vulnerable state to groom her into a submissive weapon.
Oichi fights using shadowy hands that she summons. Her abilities allow her to attack while remaining mobile: while shadow hands are summoned, she can continue to attack and move about. She's an all around very effective character right along with Saika Magoichi and Oda in terms of power. Oichi's Triangle, Forward + Triangle and Guard + Triangle special arts can all be active at the same time. In addition, Oichi can continue to move and attack while they are happening. Oichi's Forward + Triangle can be used on the move without interruption. Oichi can juggle any boss except for Honda Tadakatsu and Ōtani Yoshitsugu by using Triangle and her first Super Art to throw the boss back and forth.
An old swordsman, Shimazu Yoshihiro has decided that it is time for his generation to retire in order to allow the young warriors to carve out the future of Japan. Once he meets Ishida Mitsunari though, he realizes that the future is screwed if this one wins the war, and so he decided to accompany him in order to teach him the ropes of leadership.
Yoshihiro fights with a gigantic broadsword. His abilities are fairly generic and straightforward with no particular traits. He's fairly slow has an annoying lag penalty should he hit empty air with an attack, but one of his abilities can one-shot any boss if aimed properly. His playstyle is focused on big damage and one on one fights, which is... somewhat counterproductive in a game where combos are more important than damage. While running, Yoshihiro can break boxes by simply touching them. His third Super Art can one-shot anything, but against bosses will most likely require to be in Hero Time to aim it properly.
Everyone is screwed, Oda Nobunaga is back from the dead. War? Factions? Clans? None of that matters, Nobunaga's sole objective is to see the sea run red with the blood of mortals. Everyone is fair game once Nobunaga starts carving a bloody path through Japan
Nobunaga fights with a sword in one hand a shotgun in the other, on top of his considerable demonic powers. He's fast, mobile, extremely strong and can switch between two sets of abilities: one focused on the shotgun and one focused on his demonic powers. With the proper accessories, one of his abilities can one-shot anything in the game with ridiculous ease. Truly the Demon King. Super Art Lamenting Soul increases in power based as Oda Nobunaga's health drops. Using the Rear Line accessory (and a couple of Gold Mantis) turns Lamenting Soul into a one-hit kill wonder even against bosses. In Shotgun Mode: While performing a combo, hold the normal art button instead of tapping it to add in shotgun blasts. In Demon Mode: While performing a combo, hold the normal art button instead of tapping it to add extra slashes from the demon spirit. During Nobunaga's basara/ultimate basara, you can mash the normal arts button to increase the number of hits.
Every character has twelve weapons that can be bought and acquired by playing the campaign. In reality there are only six weapon models each with two different skins/stats. There’s also a wide variety of items that can be equipped that greatly alter the way your character behaves. Earn money by killing people and use that money to improve your ability to kill people! Alternate costumes for each playable character can also be unlocked.
Every character has seven special skills that they can unleash, though a character can only go into battle with five. The first four are locked to specific buttons, but the fifth can be customized: as you play through Story mode with a character, you'll be able to select one of three skills as they level up.