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Shantae: Reign of Sahakan
Shantaereign
"Protect Sequin, No Matter the Cost"
Developer(s) WayForward, Platinum, Astralitz Games
Publisher(s) Astralitz Games
Director(s) Matt Bozon
Writer(s) Astral Jackson
Composer(s) Jake Kaufman
Platform(s) Xbox One, PS4, Switch, Steam, RazerPocket
Release Date(s)
November 2020
Age Rating(s)
ESRB: T (Violence, Mild Language, Suggestive Themes)

PEGI: 12 (Violence depicting minor injury) CERO: C

Genre(s) Action-adventure
Series Shantae
Engine Astral Engine
Predecessor Shantae Legends
Successor Rise of the Half Genie
"Unleash the Genie Within"

Shantae: Reign of Sahakan is the sixth installment of the Shantae series. Instead of being more of a sidescroller, it is more of an hardcore open world action game with character action inputs from Platinum, (as Platinum was to put their action game aspects inside to make it a much more challenging and interesting action game). The game focuses on Shantae taking on Sahakan, one of the Fallen Titans alongside Faust and his band of Dark Genies of Sequin Land.

The game has gotten positive reception, for improvements in the combat, the challenge and exploration. 

Development

Matt Bozon, after seeing the fan responses of the success of Shantae Legends, he decided to take Shantae on a new next level; he would give Shantae the new action treatment to see what it would be like if Shantae played more like Bayonetta/DmC-like game. He signed on a collaboration with Astralitz Games to use their Astral Engine.

In January 2019, it was announced by Astralitz that Platinum would be joining the collab to put their action game aspects, and there was going to be a new writer for the game to make it more story-rich. Fans were hyped up for it, and fans were making a lot of guesses on who is the new writer for the new game, including the following;

  • "Who knows? Probably someone who is awesome at story-lore, like Yoko Taro."
  • "ROXIE KANNO THE QUEEN OF LORE" (which was the top viral response to the tweet asking people who the new mystery writer is)
  • "Maybe something like To The Moon level or NieR level"

On February 2019, on response to the comment that got a dozen likes and favorites, Roxie Kanno "@QueenOfHasla" responded on Twitter via this;

  • "No, I'm not working on Shantae. Who told you that? I don't work with Platinum you know." (Roxie Kanno was actually on Morandal's side, working on the world's first all-in-one action RPG)

It was also noted that Kamiya already turned that down, because he later admitted that Roxie Kanno is his new arch-nemesis because of her actions of outclassing them from the action. On March 2019, it was announced that the writer, Astral Jackson (who is an long-term writer and senior employee at Astralitz) would take on the lore, as he wanted something more original and more faithful to the game. 

On E3 2019, there was one trailer, featuring Shantae looking over Sequin Land, and seeing that Sequin Land needs her again to take on the dark genies of Sequin Land.

On March 2020, Astral Jackson tweeted this to ensure that Reign of Sahakan is different from the Optimus game for comparisons.

  • Reign of Sahakan is a more character-action version of Zelda, similar in fashion of NieR and Crusaders of Hasla. Optimus, on the other hand focuses more on what Zelda could've have, like all sorts of features and ideas Nintendo missed to put on their Zelda games, like building structures, and raising towns to be a hero."

On October 2020, the game was finished. Shantae was announced as a collaboration character on various games, like the new Smash Bros for Switch, and Roxie Kanno's Crusaders of Hasla as well.

Plot

Faust, a Dark Genie escapes from the Genie Realm, and awakens the Titans of Sequin, monstrosities that were fought long ago in the olden wars before Shantae came along. One of those titans, known as Sahakan, is stated to be the most threatening. Shantae and her gang are called to help out. However, upon the summoning of Faust's first evil foe, known as the Seeker. Shantae charges her hair to whip the Seeker, but the Seeker parries back, knocking her back. "He parried my hair-whip. Nobody's done that before." Shantae realizes that she's got to give it more than what she's famous for to take on Faust's army. After defeating the Seeker with Shantae's magic. Shantae declares that she needs more that herself to take on the evil Genies, with Shantae looking out into the sky. "Shantae: Reign of Sahakan"

Gameplay

The game plays more like an 3D action-adventure game like Bayonetta. It is an 3D open world game like NieR Automata. Shantae can take sidequests to get new items and equipment, and can also switch to different characters which have their own fighting style. Each area, unlike Bayonetta or their traditional beat-em-up games, the stages, known as regions consist of an large-scale land to explore, similar in fashion to Super Mario Odyssey.

As each character MUST be able to do everything possible, each character has a special ability/equivalent to Shantae's form to make sure she doesn't stand out the most, making it more friendly to each of the characters. (Shantae doesn't have any flying forms, only ground forms). For example, Risky's equivalent of the Elephant form is the Tinker Warrior, and Rotty's equivalent is the Undead Gladiator. 

In the endgame you get a helicopter, which you can fly all over Sequin Land and even access secret areas as well.

Shantae now has variety of combat systems she can utilize to destroy her enemies. The bosses are much more hardcore and the enemies are challenging as well. There are varieties of items to collect. The combat is a mix of Legend of Korra's and Nier.

Instead of having hearts, you have an health bar so the attacks you can do and the damage is more dynamic to fit within the action. This can be expanded up to 2 full-sized bars similar in fashion of Bayonetta. 

Characters have a weapon that they can upgrade and add various combos throughout weapon EXP in a similar fashion via RPG style. Characters have accessories, but the minimum amount of accessories you can hold is 2, with the exception of the third-slot which is the slot reserved for the auto-gear. Each character has their own fighting style, depending on their weapon. They also have their own magic/battle gauge as an stand in to magic. 

After beating the game, you get to loop it again on the 2nd Lamp, and last on the Infinite Lamp, which makes the enemies more aggressive and tougher every time. Aside from that, it is advised to have all stats maxed to stand a chance on the Infinite Lamp.

Enemies

There are various types of enemies, instead of just mostly the average enemies you'll see in the previous shantae games. The AI is amped up a notch to be more challenging (as this game has gotten the Platinum treatment of course) The enemy fashion and combat style is based of the 2014 game The Legend of Korra, with similar enemies, and the Mecha Tanks being repainted to fit within the Kinesis Squad, which is a new antagonist team employed by Faust. Like in Korra, enemies can have a quick-time parry sequence, that requires you to press a rhythm of sticks/buttons at the right teaming, where doing it or missing it can counter with increased damage input or miss with increased damage taken.

Enemy Name Fighting style Aggressiveness Toughness Can Block? Quick-Time Parry? Immune to Hair Whip?
Ammo Tank Tank cannon High Medium No No No (50% reduction)
Ammo Soldier Guns High Low No No No
Soldier Fists and magic High Medium Yes No No
Swordmaster Blades and magic Very high High Yes Yes (2x) No
Shadow Lord Shadow blade Very high High Yes Yes (2x) No
Mecha Tank Guns, electric cannons Very high Very high No No Yes
Magi Magic cube Very high Medium Yes Yes (2x) No
Vanguard Excalibur and shield Very high Very high Yes Yes (3x) No (50% reduction)
Fanatic Disciple Armguard Extreme (perfect-play) Very high Yes Yes (5x) No

Sequel Difficulty Spike

Of course, as this has also gotten the Platinum treatment, the combat is much more challenging:

  • Enemies (commonly human fighters) can parry/block your hair whip attack now. Of course, you can parry them back, but it requires a sequence of quick-time presses and tilts (based off Legend of Korra's)
  • Enemies must be guard-broken most times (spamming your hair-whip or magic won't cut it and must require specific attacks)
  • There is an optional playable character that uses his own health as magic making it the first Platinum game where your special attacks drain your OWN HEALTH. (excluding the L3+R3 attacks from NieR) (if your not careful you can die in one hit if you don't regenerate it back because the lowest the HP can go from Blood Magic is 1%, where it is one hit and you're dead)
  • There are enemies which are immune to hair-whip/physical attacks and must be killed via magic. (tanks for example)
  • Shantae can only equip THREE accessories (which either boosts magic gauge or changes how you fight)

Characters

A * means this character is unlockable and isn't canon to Shantae's squad. Additional characters can be played as in the beginning via New Game. Each character has their own fighting style for abilites. For example, Shantae has fists and a hairwhip, while Bolo fights via a morning star whip and flail. There are two squads, the Scuttle Squad and the Order of the Goddess, with Scuttle Squad being Shantae's main squad, and the Order of the Goddess being the unlockable characters after beating the game with the 5 characters seperately. For example, beating the game with Bolo unlocks Azrael, Rottytops unlocks Noel, and Sky unlocks Violet. Each character has their own speed-run photo after beating it, and their own quotes.

Character Name Occupation Weapon Fighting Style Magic Gauge
Shantae Half genie  Hair whip, armguards Genie Magic Magic Gauge
Risky Boots Pirate Guns, scimitar Tinkerbat Commander Tinkerbat Gauge
Bolo Martial artist Morning star whip Flail Finesse Battle Gauge
Sky Warbird tamer Wrench, avion strikes Bird Magic Wrench Fury
Rottytops Zombie girl Undead boomerang Undead Magic Undead Orbs
Azrael* Kaiser warrior Demon claymore Blood Magic His own health gauge
Miwa* Elven enchantress Magical daggers Elven Magic Daggers (up to 24)
Noel* Iron paladin Giant mallet Holy Magic Purified Spirits
Vargas* Magi sorcerer Magic cube Dark magic Cubix charges (up to 8)
Violet* Dollmaker Magic doll Doll magic Doll Gauge

Locations

Locations are nicknamed regions, as they consist of mostly large islands. These are unlike the mainline islands from Shantae and the Pirate's Curse/Half Genie Hero, as they go for a more wide mini-open world style, similar in fashion to Super Mario Odyssey.

Location Name Description
Scuttle Region The region of Scuttle Town, where Shantae makes her first fight against Faust's warriors.
Filod Region The one kingdom that is best known for it's desert region, there are pyramids yet to be foretold it's secret.
Hera Region Noted for it's ancient ruins and such, this ancient region leads home to one of the major demons that Faust has summoned.
Tromburg Region The island which is best known for it's volcano; it's power yet to be unleashed to it's visitors.
Miquois Region
Nian Region The island best known for the largest glaciers. The legendary shadow demon, Korin lurks from the ice here...
Faust's Region Faust's hideout. He is planning on using the dark energy stolen from the Genie Realm to shred Sequin Land in eternal chaos. 

Accessories

(TBA)

Bosses

Boss Name Description Bars
Seeker An soldier sent by Faust to tear down Scuttle Town. 1
Hades 3
Heracles 5
Poseidon 4
Atlas 6
Mion 4
Korin 6
Scarlet 5
Lilith 7
Sahakan A monstrorous titan that was summoned by Faust himself. Seeks to destroy the land. 10
Faust The dark genie that escaped from the Genie Realm. Seeks to summon a titan to fulfill his thirst for power. 5

Achievements

Achievement Name Description Rank
Sequin's Genie Thank you for playing. Platinum
Sahakan Slayer Defeat Sahakan, the Dark Titan and save Sequin Land. Gold
Boomerang Bonanza Kill 10 enemies with a single boomerang. Bronze
Genie Killer Kill 10 dark genies using Genie Magic. Bronze
Tinker Strategist Form a single army of Tinkerbat soldiers, and have them kill 10 enemies in sight without recalling Bronze
Spirit Seeker Kill 100 enemies using homing spirit swarms. Bronze
Cubix Buster Kill 10 enemies with a single panzer laser. Bronze
Dagger Dasher Kill 100 enemies using magic daggers. Bronze
Near Death Defeat a boss using only blood magic, but leave it as close as 1%. Bronze
Lord of the Disciples Defeat the 10 Disciples all at once.  Silver
Tireless Whipper Defeat 100 vanguard knights using hair whip. Silver
Master Fighter Unlock all of the secret combos for one character. Bronze

Reception

Shantae: Reign of Sahakan has gotten positive reception so far. It has gotten 70's to 80's on Metacritic, an 8/10 on IGN and GameSpot.

Fans liked how Shantae got her actionized sequel, which focuses more on the genie's fighting skills, and her first time fighting the dark genies of the Realm. 

The best part of the bosses was the final boss; Sahakan and Faust himself, as just like in Splatoon 1 puts the players into adrenaline rushes and has a marathon of phases (Sahakan and Faust have 8, each with their own deadly techniques alongside dodging and platforming obstacles). Sahakan and Faust took players an average of 35 to 45 minutes to finish, and each end of the phase has the player engaging in a quick-time parry, and if they miss it, Sahakan recovers a bit of health and the player has to parry all over again, and Faust is basically the Nega-Shantae 2.0 (except he inherits all of Shantae's powers and has much aggressiveness), making Sahakan and Faust one of Platinum's best video game bosses ever, and with the most intense finishers.

On Miiverse, popular posts include:

  • Fanart of Shantae and various crossovers
  • Character reviews and strategies
  • Secrets on how to master each character's fighting style
  • Using the "Cast from Hit Points" strategy to *cheese* certain bosses (as Blood Magic attacks do heavy chain damage)
  • An argument on whether Shantae from Smash, Reign of Sahakan or Crusaders of Hasla was better. Fans liked Reign of Sahakan the best, as it was a hybrid between NieR Automata and Bayonetta, Smash wasn't enough, and Crusaders of Hasla just didn't show off Shantae's magic enough.
  • A meme that said "In WayForward, the hair whip destroys the tank, and in PlatinumGames, the hair whip can't destroy the tank.". This post got a lot of Yeahs and replies, and was a favorable meme in the Shantae games.

As this game was by Astralitz Games and was made around the same time the AstralOracle came out, fans were asking "Can this game be on the AstralOracle?" In response, Optimus director Kellan Gates tweeted in response.

  • "We're gonna debate on that. Considering we did our take on Zelda, and that mixes both Shantae, Sonic and many others, we're gonna decide whether or not this is gonna be on that console or not."

Subpages

Shantae: Reign of Sahakan/Movelist

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