Long ago using a distant television, you, the fan, enjoyed an unspeakably amazing series called Samurai Jack with its incredible soundtrack. In the early aughts, the animated series about a time-traveling samurai dominated conversations before its abrupt cancelation. After years of fan inquiry, Genndy Tartakovsky’s Samurai Jack finally returned to finish the narrative in 2017 with a fifth season that aired on Adult Swim. Though this was thought to be the end, the titular samurai is now back in a 3D action game called Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time.
The game was surprise-announced on February 25, 2020 and fans collectively lost their minds. But when will it release? On what consoles? What will it play like? Here's all that and so much more.
What is Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time’s release date?
A specific release date has yet to be confirmed, but as seen in the first trailer, the game will be released sometime during summer 2020.
What consoles is Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time available on?
Everything. According to the first trailer, Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time will be available on PS4, PC, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox One.
Who is developing Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time?
Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time is being developed by Soleil Ltd. and published by Adult Swim Games. Soleil previously worked on a multiplayer arena fighter based on the Naruto franchise called Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker, which received mixed reviews.
What original cast members does Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time feature?
While we’re all traumatized by the 2004 Samurai Jack game, which included only a handful of the original cast, this one remedies the situation by bringing them all back! If a character appears in Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time, then in just about every case they're voiced by their original voice actor. Based on new gameplay shown at a PAX East 2020 panel, we know of several returning characters and their voice actors:
- Samurai Jack voiced by Phil Lamarr
- Aku voiced by Greg Baldwin
- Ashi voiced by Tara Strong
- The Scotsman voiced by John Dimaggio
- Sir Rothchild voiced by Rob Paulsen
- Demongo voiced by Kevin Michael Richardson
- Scottsman's Daughter voiced by Grey Delisle
- Witch Hag voiced by B.J. Ward
- Josephine Clench voiced by Grey Delisle
In addition to the confirmed returning cast members, we also know from gameplay footage seen at the same PAX East panel that Da Samurai, the Lava Monster, and Scaramouche will be returning as NPCs. Da Samurai and Scaramouche will likely be voiced by Keegan Michael-Key and Tom Kenny, respectively, who voiced them during the recent fifth season. Unfortunately, Richard McGonagle, the original Lava Monster voice actor, will likely not return to the role. McGonagle who also played the Norse god, Odin, during the original series didn’t reprise his role when the god appeared in Season 5. The god was instead voiced by Aaron LaPlante, who also voices Spear in Genndy Tartakovsky’s other series, Primal. Perhaps LaPlante will take over Lava Monster’s aural needs as well?
Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time is being overseen by the series’ creator, Genndy Tartakovsky. The story was written by Tartakovsky’s long-time writing partner, Darrick Bachman. Bachman previously helped write the original series and acted as the head writer on Samurai Jack Season 5.
What’s the story in Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time?
Of course, you’re wondering about this game’s story. What can Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time be when Jack’s narrative ended with Season 5?
According to Phill Lamarr in a BTS video, the original story is heavily intertwined with Samurai Jack’s series finale. It begins during the finale as Jack is finally returning to the past to defeat his nemesis, Aku. During the demon’s death throes, he changes the course of Jack’s time portal, sending the samurai back to where he first landed upon entering the future.
Throughout the game, you’ll relive Jack’s greatest adventures, playing through the series's most epic moments. Jack’s Season 5 love interest, Ashi, will be at the game’s core, acting his driving force to return to normalcy.
Does Jack just use his sword in Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time?
Nope. According to the official website, Jack can “equip and master over a dozen different weapons in combat.”
The site also says there will be unlockable skills, allowing you to define your own playstyle.
Is this game the “end” of the Samurai Jack franchise?
This game is being released more than three years after the original series concluded, of course, this has to be the end, right? Not quite.
After being asked about the series’ longevity at PAX East 2020 in February, Tartakovsky responded, “I don't think we squeezed the life out of [Samurai Jack] yet — [Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time] is just the beginning of it all.”
He refused to expand on what this cryptic comment meant, but we can safely say Samurai Jack won’t be slowing down any time soon! Perhaps we can expect a movie or another series down the line?
Is there a trailer for Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time?
Although brief, the trailer gives us an idea at the gameplay. Soleil Ltd will seemingly pull inspiration from their work on Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker. We can see that when Jack attacks foes, health bars appear above their bodies, similar to the health bars found in Shinobi Striker. Jack also uses a slick jumping move when fighting in the futuristic metropolis, giving us an idea of his learnable combat skills.
The trailer also confirms that the game’s story will span all five seasons. Jack is seen fighting foes in both his original white kimono, which he used throughout seasons 1-4 and his pitch-black Karuta that he wore during Season 5.
Given the animation throughout, it’s possible that the game will look very similar to the main series for the cutscenes while featuring the 3D game style during gameplay. All things considered, fans of the series have a lot to be excited for with this game.
Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time will be released sometime in summer 2020.