Bushido Blade was developed by both Squaresoft (now Square Enix) and Light Weight (now Bergsala Lightweight). It was released in 1997 to generally positive reviews in both the east and west and sold nearly 400,000 copies that year. The second Bushido Blade (1998) featured largely the same characters and gameplay systems from the original and met with similar success, with the game spending more than a few weeks among Japan's bestsellers.
Though the series features many samurai and ninja weapons associated with Feudal Japan (and characters who would fit right in to that time period), it takes place in the modern era.
Bushido Blade is largely famous for its realistic, high-tension combat: one direct hit to the head or chest would kill instantly, while strikes to the arms and legs would disable that limb and restrict movement and abilities. This was then and is to this day a relatively rare fighting game combat system.
Kengo: Master of Bushido (2000) is often considered a spiritual successor to the series as it was developed by Light Weight (without the aid of Square however) and shares much in common with Bushido Blade; though opinions on the game have softened over the years, initial disappointment in the game and a number of mechanical deviations from Bushido Blade have keep the Kengo series a separate entity.