Guilty Gear Isuka is a spin-off entry and overall the tenth game in the Guilty Gear series, released after Guilty Gear XX ♯Reload. While combat remains mostly the same, the game introduces a 2D side scrolling adventure mode and a four-player Versus Mode, as well as several new playable characters.
Movement, normal attacks, guarding, Tension, Roman Cancels, Psych Bursts and Overdrives remain basically the same, and Arcade Mode, Versus Mode, Training Mode and Option Mode invariably return. Unlike previous installments, however, Isuka adds a new button called Turn (L1), reassigns others, and allows for fights of up to four players. It allows characters to fight two-on-two, three-on-one or everyone-for-themselves.
The basic format of a match is based on the Two Planes Battle, and each stage has a foreground level and a background level. Characters fight while moving back and forth between the front and back planes, which is known as a Line Change (Turn + , which can also be done while guarding but it uses up 25% Tension). Characters can perform certain attacks that can hit opponents on opposite planes, but for the most part, moves will only hit opponents on the same plane they are on.
New related moves are: Line Blow (Turn + ) knocks opponents into the other plane, Line Attack (Turn + ) attacks the opponent on the other plane while switching planes, and Back Attack ( + ) attacks an opponent behind the character. The control scheme also cause Dust Attacks do be done with + once more like in Guilty Gear 1 and X.
The Soul System is another combat addition: Souls—displayed as red circles below the Burst Gauge—represent additional strength (or rather, what is typically health), and resets the health gauge when it drops to zero. During a team up, characters share Souls, so Joint Soul applies and the allocated number is determined by team combinations. The character or team that survives the match wins; if time runs out first, those with the most health and Souls win the match.
Isuka also introduces a 2D side scrolling adventure modes: GG Boost and RKII Factory. In GG Boost Mode, players fight incoming enemy after enemy, and travel through new, unique stages, where they have to collect points, bonuses and avoid traps. It has entirely different mechanics: the Jump button is reassigned, Line Attack and Line Blow are removed, and the has been assigned as a directional button. Certain moves are altered or remain inactive. In RKII Factory Mode, players can play as the customizable Robo-Ky II with unique moves that are unlocked by collecting points through playing and can be arranged in any way the player wishes. There is also a Color Edit Mode, like in Guilty Gear X Advance Edition, that allows the player to customize nearly every aspect of a character's palette, including buckles and hair.
Command lists (based on Guilty Gear XX) have been altered: Instant Kills have been removed altogether. Jam's Breath of Asanagi can now only charge once for Ryuujin, Gekirin and Kenroukaku. Dizzy loses her Gamma Ray. The mechanics present much difficulty for characters like May and Potemkin due to their limited range and slow movement speed. Zoning characters such as Testament also come at a disadvantage due to the Line Change mechanic.
Guilty Gear Isuka does not have any particular plot within the Guilty Gear storyline.
- Playable characters
- Unlockable characters
Notes: Characters in italics are console and PC-exclusive.
In September 2003, Sammy Corporation announced that a new game dubbed Guilty Gear X Series The Newest Version would be featured at the JAMMA arcade show; at the show, the company revealed that Guilty Gear Isuka would be the game's name. "In Guilty Gear Isuka we want to satisfy existing fighter fans with new content and never-before-seen innovations. We also want to reach out to mainstream fans to show them that, right now, the envelope in fighting games is also being pushed in two dimensions", declared Tim Pivnicny, senior VP of Sammy Studios, Inc.
- Isuka (鶍?) means "crossbill" in Japanese, which is the onomatopoeia of the sound made by two swords when they clash.
- Guilty Gear Isuka Original Soundtrack
- Guilty Gear Isuka 4-koma Kings
- Guilty Gear Isuka Comic Anthology
- Guilty Gear Isuka Outlive Encyclopedia
- Guilty Gear Isuka Technical Guide
- Guilty Gear Isuka Complete Guide
- Guilty Gear Isuka at Wikipedia
- Guilty Gear Isuka Credits (Arcade, PlayStation 2, Windows) at MobyGames