The second follow-up to the complex PS2 launch title, Kessen III adds real-time battles to the strategic gameplay of its predecessors. Orders can now be issued to troops in the heat of the fight, and they will respond immediately. The game allows players to switch between different units and give orders on the fly, promoting more fluid, intense warfare than was seen in earlier versions of the title. Like the original (but not the first sequel), Kessen III is set in feudal Japan during the "Warring States" period.
In the role of Oda Nobunaga, players will fight through a lifetime of battles in their quest to unite the country. The game offers command of large, diverse armies that can join with computer-controlled allied forces on the battlefield to execute joint maneuvers and attacks. Battles are strung together on a historical storyline, and players can custom-develop their characters as they progress through the campaign. Each act of conquest follows a progression of diplomatic Conference stages, strategic War Council stages, and finally, the actual battles themselves.