Battle Arena Toshinden 3 is a 3D weapon-based fighting game developed by Tamsoft (in conjunction with Takara) and published by Takara (Playmates in North America) for the Sony PlayStation on December 27, 1996 (in Japan) and March 1997 (worldwide).
The third installment of the Battle Arena Toshinden series (and the last in the series to be released in North America), it radically changes the gameplay of its predecessor, mostly by introducing predefined combo chains and enclosed arenas (making the game more juggle heavy and eliminating ring outs). It also introduces a wide variety of new unlockable characters (most of them based on the initially-playable characters), nearly doubling the total roster to 32. The game also introduces optional English voice acting (of varying quality), an option to sacrifice graphical quality for higher framerates, and a unique Arcade Mode where opponents are based on the faction chosen (either Heroes or Villains).
Set after the second tournament and the destruction of the Secret Society, a new mysterious organization (known only as "The Organization") sponsors a third tournament and targets numerous fighters for diabolical purposes.
Battle Arena Toshinden 3 includes 14 playable characters from the start, four of which are new characters. Out of all the characters from the game's predecessor, only Uranus, Master, and Fo Fai do not appear.
In addition, the game includes 14 unlockable "rival" characters (all of which are new additions, excluding Vermilion) that serve as the opponents for the protagonists in Arcade Mode. The fighting styles and movelists for each rival are usually based on their corresponding protagonist, almost playing like a mirror match. When playing as them in Arcade Mode, all of their opponents are from the protagonists.
Each side also has a final boss and secret boss (all of whom are unlockable). This totals the roster to 32 fighters.
Each rival is locked until players complete the game with their protagonist counterpart.
- Abel (final boss for the protagonists, unlockable after beating Arcade Mode with Sho)
- Veil (secret boss for the protagonists, unlockable after beating Arcade Mode with Abel)