This 3rd installment of the mediocre Toshinden series really shines...it retains all the good points of the previous versions, and improves on the shaddy gameplay by incorperating elements of Soul Edge and Fighting Vipers/VF style games. The whole hit detection process is totally redone. You take the hits much like in Soul Edge, with button tap combos comprising the main element of play. Special moves are still done the same way, and are still usefull...however, in close combos are now the way to go. When you start each match, you are given 2 'super special' moves for the number of rounds it's set to, but you get them all at once...so use em wisely. They are pretty cool, and are similar to overdrive moves (which are still in the game), but are a little bit cooler in most cases. There are now 32 characters in the game, and all 32 are directly playable from the select screen (half you have to earn by beating the game, one for each character just like Tekken 2, and to get the 4 bosses, you must beat it with Vermillion first on lvl 5, then with each boss you earn up the level 1 notch and beat it again with them.). The new characters are really cool, and the old ones have been spiced up and are a lot cooler now.
A couple of the coolest new characters are a Japanese cop (or hitman, not sure which) named Nagisa, who wields a sword and a Glock looking semi-automatic pistol. Another one is a kid named David, who carries a freakin' chainsaw, and even has a gun that he uses in throw moves. One note, the gun carring characters (Including Vermillion) now have limited ammo...so use the ammo wisely. The cop can reload after doing his overdrive (which pumps about 15 rounds into you, reloading between every 6 or 7 shots. Very cool.)...and every character with a gun can reload by pressing select (taunt move) except David, who shoots his gun by pressing select...However, it takes a second to reload, so it leaves you open to attack.
Each character has a double, sort of like Tekken 2, but the although the doubles have similar special moves, they feel like new characters, and look quite a bit different. For example, David's double looks like Jason out of the Friday the 13th movies, and Kayin's double looks just like Michael Jackson (he even moon walks, and says "woo" during specials!). Most of the doubles are really cool, but are not based on movies or whatever like the forementioned characters.
The arena's are now totally enclosed, with walls and ceiling...both of which can be used to bounce the opponent off of for neat little combos (watch out if you hit a guy against the ceiling...they can fall on you and knock you down!). There are no longer out of ring victories...which gives the game a new style of play...but getting up against a wall can mean combo city...so staying in the middle is still a good idea. (unless you're the one dishing out the pain...then the wall is your "friend" :)