In this installment of the Devlog I talk a bit about the Campaign Map and new Combat Mechanics.Most of the stuff on the Campaign Map I have mention them before so I'll go straight to the Combat.
The Combat now is skill based, meaning that even if you hit an opponent, he has a percentage to block your hit. That percentage is actually dictated by his level of skill and how familiar he is with the style you are using and your weapon.
If your tactics are to spam the attack button you'll have a hard time dealing with enemies, for example, let's say you are facing three opponents of the most basic level, they have a level of familiarity with your style of 1, if you are using a sword they have a 15% chance of blocking your hits, BUT! Attack them with this style 3-4 times (the exact number is different for everyone, it's dictated by the stats of the enemy) and not only will the enemy you are attacking will level up his familiarity but everyone who is currently seeing you fight! So more skillful opponents would be priority targets, you don't want them to learn even more about you.
Another thing I usually don't like in other games nowadays is the constant info on your enemy, you are always treated like an infant getting to know the world but sometimes it's just right out offensive. I'm seeing a gigantic monster wielding a cleaver coming out of a furnace, duh I don't need you to tell me that he is of a higher level and has fire resistance (Any resemblance to any Butcher is coincidental). So no magic floating numbers betraying the level of the enemy.
Now you are going to ask:"How would you know then how familiar is an enemy with each style? Or his level? "And I'll answer:"By observing and using lore!"
Lore you say? What is that? Well enough with toddler behaviours, let's take a deep look into the Samurai culture.
As you may know or not, Samurai once upon a time were the military nobility of Japan. A Samurai literally means "to serve". Contrary to the popular belief of that every Samurai is instantly an expert with the sword, Samurai's abilities varied. For someone to become a Samurai, under the strict Confucianism cast system, he would actually have to be born in a Samurai family and carry on the tradition or prove himself through battle. Though there were always exception to the rules of course and the constant warfare helped in the survival of fittest as you can imagine. Another thing that is highly misinterpreted is that all Samurai were some kind of a high moral human beings or whatever and that every Samurai was actually following Bushido. It wasn't like that at all prior to the 12th century. Bushido is actually a modern term. Before the unification of Japan there were as good as any other veteran soldier of that era. The "peaceful" times of the Tokugawa era show the rise of the sword fencing schools and that is where the whole moral code for the Samurai started to give birth. Now of course they had a very good base to begin with, their military laws prohibited for a warrior to lose his sword in a battle, they took no prisoners and everyone had to take the head of the person who kill to instantly prove that it was him that killed him. Warlords never send assassins to kill another Warlord. It was regarded highly disrespectful if you took the life of your adversary outside of a battle, the only time it was allowed it was if he was forced to commit Seppuku, literally means "The cutting of the belly". Oh and one other thing, Seppuku is a ritual, not a suicide, if you did it alone in your room with no witnesses and no one to take your head off it's called something else, I don't remember right now and I'm not going to search 50+ books I have on the Japanese culture to find it out. So all this and the actions of Miyamoto Musashi show rise to the Bushi class of the Samurai, it wasn't long enough from there that every Samurai had to become a Bushi to be a true Samurai. The capital punishment of the goverment on those who didn't follow at least the basic lines of the "Bushido" code help the widespread of this way of living. Now that we have all this clear.
Knowing the lore of the game (or the Samurai lore in general) would actually give you a tremendous advantage over the game. It was nice reading books in Baldur's Gate and learning everything about the world but it didn't have much to add to the game, you could take hint of were something or someone could be but that was all.
With Kagemusha now everything you see it would have a meaning. For example, it is no secret that Samurai always carried two swords, so what you will think the next time that you'll see an enemy that only has one? That he is not a Samurai, that screams low skill! But of course whatever shines is not gold, so you'll have to look for other clues, take hint in where the level you are playing is based on the Campaign map. Is it close to the city? Is it close to a village or a forest? Does he have a reason to be here? Every region it usually had it's own style, for example the Satsuma Sword Style was focused a lot on the first strike, so they had small tsubas on their Katanas (Don't get me started on the term Katana), the sword guard. The way someone is dressed, his behaviour on the level and the location of the level betrays a lot for him, you will just have to spend the time and invest on the game and it will give back
And no. enemies won't be standard, they would be semi-randomized at the start of each level but on unique levels that are story based they would be always the same.
As you can see in the video, all this things are implemented, some things of course they would be more clear with time and when they are more polished.
Keep in mind that I'm not a Historian. All my knowledge comes from personal research and years studying martial arts and common logic, so if something is not that accurate, well I don't really care.
Here's the video