Kiai Resonance is a 2D versus fighting game for Windows. You take part in multiplayer samurai combats where one hit off-guard is fatal, and several challenges to perfect your skills.
User reviews:
Overall:
Very Positive (77 reviews) - 80% of the 77 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Apr 21, 2015

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Reviews

“Kiai: Resonance gets right, aha, to the point. It’s a samurai duelling game about one hit kills. One hit kills were the speciality of the samurai in the Kagoshima region, where I studied.”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

“This is not just a fighter, but a mind game that could bring a lot of tension to a genre that used to be occupied by feverish button-mashing.”
The IndieGameMagazine

“Don’t let Kiai Resonance fly under your radar any longer, get your feet bound, don your kimono and pick it up at a bargain basement price...”
Critical Indie Gamer

About This Game

Kiai Resonance is a 2D versus fighting game for Windows.

You take part in multiplayer samurai combats where one hit off-guard is fatal, and several challenges to perfect your skills. The player can change his katana position at any time to adjust to his opponent's, creating a mind game where you have to anticipate his next attack.

The graphics are attempting to restore the simple aesthetics of traditional Japanese prints by taking some pictorial elements of its great masters, while imbuing it with violence that characterized the confrontations.

Among the available game modes are included the classic one vs. one, either alone against the AI, two on the same screen, or online, as well as various mini games to test our samurai skills.

The game supports current gamepads, and online play with ranking system.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: 1.8 GHz Dual-Core
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Storage: 162 MB available space
Customer reviews
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Overall:
Very Positive (77 reviews)
Recently Posted
【Rasenan】
( 3.0 hrs on record )
Posted: July 16
Musashi Miyamoto approves.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Blue Flame 青い炎
( 2.3 hrs on record )
Posted: July 6
No magic, no ridiculously overpowered sword swings, no 9000 HP. This game is about simplified samurai swordsmanship, one strike, one kill. This game is about timing, precision and your own fighting psychology, just like Kendo (way of the sword).

As a Kendoka, I personally I like how this game peresents samurai swordsmanship: You have 3 stances, jodan/chudan/waki-no-kamae. Jodan is a very offensive stance, but you can't block. Chudan is the ambivalent stance, where you can attack and block. Waki is the most difficult stance, because it is a counter-strike and therefore must be very well timed (execute the strike when the enemy raises his sword for a attack).

Unfortunetly this game lacks hiki-waza (striking while going backwards). That would make taiatari more fun.
What I really don't like about the game mechanics is, you can only use certain strikes in a certain kamae. For example you can't strike a do-uchi (strike to the stomach) from chudan, but only from waki. There is only one oji-waza (counter technique) and that is nuki-waza. It would be really nice if there were sureage, kaeshi or uchiotoshi in this game.

All in all a great game, that would be even more awesome if there were more features (maybe a campaign/storymode?) and a working multiplayer.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Snuggles
( 0.3 hrs on record )
Posted: July 2
Have to concur with the negative reviews. There is promise here; both in concept and art style; but there is barely enough here to constitute a flash game with controller support. There need to be more AI; more environments; just basically more of everything. This feels like a pitch for Greenlight or an early access game - not a finished product. Yes it's dirt cheap; but it's a difficult game to justify when Nidhogg exists. The only use I'll ever have for it is if someone wants to play local death match and just REALLY loves the Japanese water color aesthetic.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jabel
( 0.7 hrs on record )
Posted: June 23
Kenjutsu simulator.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Chiken_Sammich
( 1.6 hrs on record )
Posted: May 7
This feels like a stripped down 2d Bushido Blade. While that's not an entirely bad thing. Kiai seems to be missing a lot of the elements that made BB so damn fun.

There is no variation in the (only)2 characters you get to choose from. Sure that helps with balancing, but only because balancing isn't a thing when everyone is the same. However it kills the player's individuality & stymies gamer's creativity.

There are only 3 attacks & no options when it comes to fight or flight. Sure you can dodge back, but full on running away to lure the enemy into a disadvantageous position, makes for some crazy interesting battles. No projectiles, to throw your opponent off guard for a quick strike.

No limb damage, no jumping or using the terrain to your advantage, etc.

Content is lacking in Kiai also. Only 3 stages & like the characters, they're just aesthetic differences.

Online seems to be dead.

Look, I know Kiai isn't Bushido Blade & never pretended to be. My point is that Kiai is in the same vein as BB & while it does some things right, Kiai comes up a little short. The mind game & the quick twitch is there, but the variation in gameplay & content are lacking.

A good example of a 2d game that got a lot of this right is Nidhogg.


This is an ok game, but one to pick up on sale. Also it wouldn't hurt to have a friend that is into this kind of game as well.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
alterpha
( 4.2 hrs on record )
Posted: February 29
Very basic sword cuts, but it is not that easy of a game. You cannot go nuts j swinging like a crazy person. It takes timing, distance, correct movement and some luck. I wish there were more sword techniiques as I said it's just 3 basic stances, The challenges are the hardest part of this game, I still have to beat about half of them. There is a multiplayer mode...which I haven't tried yet...and even an online competition, All in all it isn't a bad little game. It could use some tweeks and variety here and there. But not bad.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
|-TSC-| Shimazu Yoshihiro
( 4.2 hrs on record )
Posted: February 8
Game is good. Not the kind of game you would play for hours but the kind you launch when you want a fast game to have fun for a game or two. Visually very enjoyable. Gameplay simple but effective. Obly real downside is that multiplayer seems desert. Would love to find someone to play with because it would be more challenging than the AI.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
VoidLance
( 3.2 hrs on record )
Posted: January 15
This is a really fun and cool game, with pretty realistic gameplay. Some of the one player challenges, especially Echoes and Reflex Test can be really confusing/annoying, but they are easily passable, and the game in general takes very little getting used to. One complaint is that the online mode is very dry, it is extremely difficult to find a match since no-one seems to play. This makes it very difficult to for achievement hunting since most of them involve winning online matches. If you want to get the achievements, I would reccommend getting a friend to buy it as well and play at the same time so you can be sure there are online matches to join.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Eremiten [SWE]
( 6.3 hrs on record )
Posted: January 4
A very good one-hit-kills game. You can make power shouts! Whoaaaaahhh! huuueooo!

Has amazing Japanese samurai art and is short enough for you to only focus on having fun. To bring you closer to being a samurai you can have a drinking game, a sip of sake each time you fail to kill your opponent.

P.S.
If you manage to get all trading cards they offer beautiful and clean artwork in 1920x1080 (not a single watermark by the art creator).
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Bah
( 5.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 26, 2015
This is a very interesting and pretty little game with a simple premise. Samurai swordfights, 1 on 1, first hit wins. Its good at what it is, the problem with the game is that its very one dimensional. There is a bit of depth to technique as you get deeper into the game, but the game's lack of content hurts it from being something you will put a lot of time into.

Recommended on the cheap or if in a bundle.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
86 of 108 people (80%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 23, 2015
The good:

I think my favorite aspect of this game is how it looks like you're playing an animated painting. The art and animations are simplistic but really supplement the game. The gameplay itself plays out much like one might expect a one strike kill game to play. It's mostly a reimagining of rock paper scissors but with a twist. That twist being that you can see what your opponant is going to throw and can make changes, and so can he. So the match becomes a mind game as well as a test of twitch reflexes.

The bad:

Well the biggest problem that I've noticed is the lack of content and variation. All opponants look exactly the same and for all I know use the same AI. There's no kind of storymode that one might traditionally find in a fighting game. I haven't tried local versus mode, so I'll assume that functions, however the online competition has been a ghost town every time I've made the attempt.


Final thoughts:

Kiai Resonance feels like a great alpha build game. The core gameplay is beautiful and working as one might expect, but where's the content? Where are the different modes to offer some variety? I would be hopeful if this was an early access game that we might see the polish that this game deserves, but I see no indication that developement will continue. As of the time the I'm writing this review, Kiai Resonance is on sale for $4.49 and may be worth it just to enjoy the traditional styled Japanese art and get a small taste of some fun gameplay. For me, the lack of being able to do anything other than face the same AI over and over really takes away from the experience, so I don't see people really getting much playtime out of a title like this.
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64 of 77 people (83%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 14, 2015
Kiai Resonance is a 2D samurai fighting game developed by Absorb Reality. In Kiai Resonance you play as a samurai and take part in quick fights and difficult challenges requiring fast reflexes as one hit kills in Kiai. Kiai Resonance is made up of singleplayer fights, multiplayer fights and challenges but my review is focusing on challenges and singleplayer only.

+Cool painting-esque art style
+Simple combat that's relatively easy to get to grips with
+One hit kill combat makes the fights interesting and short
+Three different combat stances to utilise, each with giving you a different advantage
+Interesting challenges
+There's a rush mode which makes you and your opponent charge towards each other at the start of the fight, makes things a little more interesting
+Good tutorial
+Full gamepad support
+Great soundtrack and soundeffects

-Kiai Resonance has a serious lack of content. There are only two characters to choose from. There are only three maps (four if you complete all of the challenges). There's no kind of upgrades or unlocks which doesn't exactly help its replay value.
-The multiplayer is completely dead
-Serious lack of graphical and audio options, all you get is Fullscreen: On/Off, Sounds: On/Off and Music: On/Off
-The singleplayer AI doesn't provide much of a challenge once you've got your head around the controls

Verdict:
6.5

Kiai Resonance is a good samurai fighting game with a nice art style and simple combat that currently suffers from a serious lack of content.

***This review was written using a key provided by the Developer for review purposes***

El K.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
18 of 21 people (86%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
2.5 hrs on record
Posted: April 23, 2015
Red as autumn leaves...
...I go to my ancestors...
...Will they accept me?




GAMEPLAY: The gameplay of Kiai Resonance is, difficult to describe. It is a two-player, two-dimensional (2D) duelling game. Basically, you have two players in a 2D plane fighting with the same weapon, to the death. Speaking of Death, it's a one-hit kill system. If the sword as much grazes you, you instantly die, making the game very tense. It also makes it, in a sense, strategic.

In my experience, most matches last less than a minute if they even reach thirty-seconds. This was how duels were in real life, very quick, brutal affairs. The player has many tricks to use against AI and Humans alike...

The player has three stances, high, middle, and low. Each stance has it's own advantages and disadvantages. They have different purposes and different uses. Unlike Nidhogg, where each strike did the samething. Players can also parry, lock swords, and even charge/jump backwards.



All bleeding, friend and foe...
...streams fading into river calm...
...Finally we are one!

-Ikeda Kanagonda



GRAPHICS: The graphics of Kiai Resonance are not 'impressive' according to the current standard. However, they are in my opinion, amazing. It is in imitation of traditional Japanese art and fits the game's theme and feel perfectly. It is as if watching an animated painting, objects in the environment move as well.

Also, unlike Nidhogg, this game already has working multiplayer. Complete with a ranking system.



Brothers around me...
...Cherry Blossoms falling from trees...
...The perfect death!

-Point_Man

disclaimer: I totally got these haikus from the twcenter
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10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: April 23, 2015
Kiai Resonance is a 2D, 2 player (local and online) where timing and 'stance' is everything.

The game has a fantastic ambience to it, traditonal Japanese music and backgrounds: you do feel like you are playing hand drawn characters on cloth - I think the presentation for what is really a simple premise of a game is excellent.

You have 3 modes of stance: high, low or middle. These modes combined with charge and jump back can make the game fall into the twitch game category, as you must strike from your stance at just the right moment: there is clearly some luck in there as well.

Each stance is either a defence, counter strike or strike.

I've just spent an hour playing the 'solo' portion of the game and found that the A.I. can be beaten quite easily, This is not a criticism as it would appear the real attraction of the game is the online component, which incidently has rankings: however I could not match up with anyone online [the game is afterall new, and I sincereley hope that people go online]

The solo play is IMHO only available so you can get a feel for the stances and movement. There is also a section with challenges that will assist in your quest to follow Bushido and become the ultimate Samurai - these challenges, actually are quite challenging.

If you like these sort of fighting games, get it. However it may be prudent to wait until it has some online action, as the solo and challenges will bore quickly.

enjoy

+cards
+achievements
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10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
Recommended
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 26, 2015
This is a very interesting and pretty little game with a simple premise. Samurai swordfights, 1 on 1, first hit wins. Its good at what it is, the problem with the game is that its very one dimensional. There is a bit of depth to technique as you get deeper into the game, but the game's lack of content hurts it from being something you will put a lot of time into.

Recommended on the cheap or if in a bundle.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
6.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 4
A very good one-hit-kills game. You can make power shouts! Whoaaaaahhh! huuueooo!

Has amazing Japanese samurai art and is short enough for you to only focus on having fun. To bring you closer to being a samurai you can have a drinking game, a sip of sake each time you fail to kill your opponent.

P.S.
If you manage to get all trading cards they offer beautiful and clean artwork in 1920x1080 (not a single watermark by the art creator).
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
21 of 33 people (64%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: April 23, 2015
Akira Kurosawa would dig the stylish combat.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
8.8 hrs on record
Posted: April 26, 2015
After some hours playing, I have to say, this is a good game.

Challenges are funny, they don't take much time anyway but still entertaining, I recommed doing them first before playing online, but that's up to each one.

The singleplayer mode is for practice, since there is no story mode. There is also a local multiplayer for 2 players.

The online is really fun, but since the matches are user-hosted, if the player hosting has a bad connection lag can be awful, also, there are not much players yet, but everyday since its release there are more players on the scoreboard.

The visuals are beautiful, how some parts of the maps are animated, and some other are in a front layer, not all in the background, it really looks like a "living painting" with the warriors fighting. By the way, my favourite map is "Water" based on Tani Buncho's "Grasses and Moon" painting.

The soundtrack is wonderful, I think it suits every map so good (each map has its own), but things to be said, the menu song, despite being relaxing, can become repetitive to some, because it's a short simple melody, and if you have a long wait for an online match, you have to listen to it until you find a player (if you have music activated in the options)

The only bad thing I can say is that there's a lack of content, it would be nice to have some customization for the charachters, a "Challenge Editor" to make our own challenges and share them in the Workshop, more maps, for example.

There is one unlockable map, making them 4 maps in total.

To sum up, entertaining game, with more options than it may seem at first, it's a lot of fun when you learn "distracting techniques" and defeat a player with such tricks. The price is maybe a little high for the lack of content, but I do not think it is actually abusive.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
7.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 24, 2015
It's one of those games with a simple premise that works in very interesting ways. Bonus points because I can pretend to be Samurai Jack.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 23, 2015
Beautiful to look at, wonderful to play with elements of chance and skill and timing all mixed together.
This game is all about atmosphere, art, and fun. Its perfectly simple, and simply perfect.
For five bucks theres no excuse to miss this one. I recomend it as a game you can jump into for short sessions.
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