The Rage Explosion, known in Japan as Anger Explosion (怒り爆発 - Ikari Bakuhatsu), is a key element in the battle system of the Samurai Shodown series which has been present in every installment.
Early games (1993 - 1995) Edit
The original Rage Explosion (now known as Rage Mode, and Anger Mode 怒りモード - Ikari Mōdo in Japan) was a special temporal state that occurs when a player filled the Rage Gauge. During the time that lasts the Rage Explosion, the player’s character skin turns red, and is able to deal damage above normal. After some seconds the explosion ends and Rage Gauge returns to its original empty state.
In Samurai Shodown II was added the Weapon Breaking Super Special move, which only can be done during the Rage Explosion. For Samurai Shodown III: Blades of Blood the Weapon Breaking was replaced by the Knocking on the Sword Super Special move, and was added a new command to fill the Rage Gauge manually, called Rage Build. If the player reaches Rage Explosion thanks to Rage Build, the explosion duration is very short. Also, some character receives a power booster in certain moves, giving additional hits to the opponent.
Later games (1996 - ongoing) Edit
For Samurai Shodown IV: Amakusa’s Revenge, SNK reworked the concept of Rage Explosion, making it a new gameplay feature that works in conjunction with Rage Gauge.
During any moment of the battle, a player can press Light Slash + Medium Slash + Strong Slash at the same time to activate the Rage Explosion; the character is involved in an explosion that pushes back the opponent, but does no damage. The use of Rage Explosion can also interrupt opponent’s attacks.
Just after Rage Explosion command is entered, the Rage Gauge is replaced by a new meter/bar called Explosion Gauge which will automatically decrease. During this state the player can perform Link Slashes, Knocking on the Sword super special techniques, and Fatal Flash. If the player uses Fatal Flash, hits the opponent with a super special move, or the gauge ends, the Rage Explosion concludes and the Rage Gauge will not be available for the rest of the match.
Duration of Explosion Gauge is inversely proportional to how much life has the character: less life near KO will result in a nearly full Explosion Gauge, more life (50% or above) will result in a very short explosion.
Samurai Shodown V brought some adjustments to the Rage Explosion. Now when it’s activated, the length of the gauge will be full, regardless how much life has the player’s character. The length of Sword Gauge is increased to its maximum during this state. The Fatal Flash was changed from Rage Explosion to Concentration One. If the player activates Rage Explosion, the Meditation marker above the Life Gauge disappears, indicating the player that Concentration One cannot be activated for the rest of the match.