The Wild West was never this wild!
Do you have what it takes to shoot and slice your way through 10 action-packed levels and become the "Super Ultra Sexy Hero"?
Rising Zan: The Samurai Gunman takes you back to the wild west of 1800's where, armed with only a gun, Katana sword, and some ultra sexy moves, you'll face a town full of the meanest, ugliest and weirdest outlaws you've ever seen. As you fight your way through this "sushi western" you'll solve puzzles, play mini-games, deal with bizarre and deadly bosses, and earn those ever important "sexy points" you'll need to become the "Super Ultra Sexy Hero"!
-Lots of 3rd person super ultra sexy action cut'em and shoot'em up action
-Use your six gun, Katana sword or sexy combos to take out the bad guys
-Outrageous mini-games to play and puzzles to solve
-Out of this world wild west environment
-Hidden levels and characters
Young gentlemen in distress!
Giant bombs falling from the sky!
A plethora of fun button mashing QTEs mini-games!
Okay, that's really overselling it. Rising Zan is not a good video game in any way, shape or form. The graphics are super rough, the controls handle like crap, the difficulty curve makes no sense, etc. but hey, that's what to expect from an old ass PS1 game. However, and apart from the kickin' soundtrack, the only redeeming selling point of the game is the quirky story, dialogues and general goofy atmosphere, which totally make up for the bad gameplay - something that most old Japanese games are infamous for (e.g., Mister Mosquito, Katamari Damacy, Shadow of Destiny, Flower, Sun, and Rain and God Hand, to name a few.)
Rising Zan pretty much is Devil May Cry's goofy grandpa. Everything from Clover Studio, Capcom and Platinum Games is here: parrying, dodging, combos, cancels, button mashing events, emphasis on being cool, stylish finishers, pop culture references (nothing too cringe-worthy, don't worry), over-the-top action, you name it. I find the game rather fascinating, I see it as a sort of prehistoric relic that shaped the Hack'n Slash/Beat'em Up/Stylish Cuhrayzee Action genre either subconsciously or as a homage/inspiration.
Anyway, I'll try to be as efficient as possible in the LP, cut the boring parts (note: I started doing that from stage 5), will try to talk about the (archaic) gameplay mechanics and how most enemies from the Devi May Cry games share the exact same attacks and patterns as the one in Rising Zan, I'll showcase anything worth of mention I find in the levels, explain the JP and US differences from both version of the game, and I'll try to get the "Bitchin' A rank" boss finisher at the end of every stages.
Rising Zan only has 9 levels (and one uninteresting tutorial stage), so you can easily be done with it in one afternoon. There are a bunch of unlockables like an alternate lewd outfit for Johnny, an additional playable character as well as a couple more difficulty modes which I won't cover - enemies get more health, you take more damage and nothing else. Enjoy.
Table of Contents
Japanese intro cutscene, JP opening song and Japanese finishers
Intro & 1st Impact: Here comes Zan
2nd Impact: Wild in the Street & 3rd Impact - Oriental Dark power
4th Impact: Hell Train
5th Impact: Shogun in a gold mine
6th Impact: Zan vs Geisha
7th Impact: Mechanicalwork Grudge
8th Impact: It's a Kabuki Show
Final Impact: Rising Zan
True Ending, Sapphire, finishers, JP&US version differences
Final update in screenshot format, covering Sapphire's dialogues and the JP/US version differences
Grading point system for the button mashing finishers:
0000 - 1200 G - WEAK
1200 - 1400 F - YEAH
1400 - 1450 E - NEAT
1450 - 1600 D - COOL
1600 - 1650 C - GROOVY
1650 - 1750 B - WICKED
1750 - ???? A - BITCHIN'
G - Gassho ("Buddhist-style pressed-palm gesture of piety", a ritual gesture of Eastern origin, with hands pressed together in front of the chest. It can be used for prayer or as a sign of greeting, gratitude, reverence, or apology. When performed with a bow, it is called gassho rei.)
F - Harakiri ("cutting the belly" aka seppuku, a ritual suicide)
E - Koishigure (Shigure for drizzle; shower in late autumn (fall) or early winter or something, ancient fall, evil fall, dense fall, etc. koi for evil intentions or love)
D - Yumeshibai (Theatre of dreams?)
C - Oroshi (some sort of wind)
B - Zan (Cutting, slicing)
A - Daisetsudan (great dismemberment/a big cut, etc.)
Seibai = Punishment/Justice/Justice has been served
G Meoto (married couple)
F Kantsubaki (Camellia)
E Usugesho (????)
D Mangekyo (Kaleidoscope)
C Kazaguruma (Windmill)
B Yozakura (night cherry blossom)
A Abaredaiko (furious drumming)
"Abara Daiko" is considered to be a hard drumming in the Gion Festival in Kokura City, Fukuoka, Japan. One of such furious drummings is further considered to have been performed by a legendary person called Matsugorou Tomishima （富島松五郎）. He is known by his nickname "Muhoumatsu."
Ranking system/overall score:
Here's what you get at the end of a stage depending on your overall score. The Katana and Gun percentage is how many you used melee/range, Time is self-explanatory, the faster the better score. Life is how many HP you had left upon beating a stage (no damage = perfect score). Here are the rankings you can get:
Sexy Hero *
Ultra Sexy Hero **
Super Ultra Sexy Hero ***
You earn * Hero Star Badges after reaching a certain rank, it's 1 with Sexy Hero, 2 with USH and 3 with SUSH. The difficulty you're playing at also affects the amount of stars, it's twice as much on Hard for example. Hero Star badges let you unlock new difficulty levels, an alternate outfit for Johnny. I've covered the unlockables in the final update.
Random fun facts:
The Narrator is voiced by Terence McGovern, aka Launchpad McQuack from Ducktales and Larry from The Walking Dead games
Mr. Gizmo (the Dr. Willy character) is voiced by Jeff Kramer, aka Francis York Morgan from Deadly Premonition
The main antagonist Loki is voiced by David Nowlin, aka Sam from Sam & Max (Telltale version)
Sapphire is voiced by Rebecca Wink, aka Emily Wyatt from Deadly Premonition
Sasuki Sensei is voiced by Charles Martinet (Mario)