|Dynasty Warriors 8|
|Players 1 – 2|
|Beat ‘Em Up|
|PS3 | 360|
When you hear that a game series has lasted through eight different forms, you would immediately think of games like Final Fantasy. However, in this case, we are talking about one of the legendary beat ’em ups from KOEI TECHMO, Dynasty Warriors. With more officers, more missions and more modes for players to enjoy, this definitely seems to be the best versions of the series so far. But can the might of the Three Kingdoms stand up to the expectations of the gamers? Let us have a look and find out.
The storyline is the same as it has always been in the series, the story of the three kingdoms of china trying to dominate the region. The three major factions, Wu, Wei and Shu, venture out to conquer the world in their own image. Along the way they will encounter many foes such as, the Yellow Turbans, the Jin dynasty, wild barbarians and the awesome power of Lu Bu.
Throughout the story you will be able to choose who you play as in a mission from a choice between three different officers with completely different fighting styles. The combat in Dynasty Warriors 8 is now bigger and better than ever with some officers changing their classic weapons and new officers introducing new forms of combat. Before you jump into battle, you get to choose what weapons you would go into battle with. You can choose between two different weapons with different elements to them. The elements will deal more damage to certain units which encourages players to select both different weapons and different elements to ravage the battlefield.
There are tons of officers to play as for all the factions, ranging from the spear wielding Zhao Yun of Shu, the sword swinging predator Xiahou Dun of Wei, the Tonfa handling little conqueror Sun Ce of Wu and the strategic elegance of Sima Yi of Jin. On top of playing as the four major faction’s officers, you also get the chance to play as the other faction officers such as Zhang Jiao, Lu Bu, Diao Chan and Meng Huo. All these characters are unlocked simply by playing through the game, seeing battles from the perspective of different factions and officers.
Aside from the campaign and free mode, there is a new game type known as Ambition mode that allows you to construct your own base in order to win the allegiance of the emperor. In this game type you will help your continent grow as you go out on missions to recruit new officers, earn fame and acquire materials that can be used to upgrade your base. It is a different game style that encompasses more mission based scenarios than the campaign. An interesting game type that suits the game quite well.
One thing that Dynasty Warriors 8 has decided to embrace, that is a very welcome addition to the series, is that everything is connected to online play. You can go online with your friends as you battle against your foes or even compare how you are performing in comparison to the rest of the world in the rankings. This is a fantastic addition to the game as more and more people are getting into it and want to join their friends in epic combat on huge battlefields.
Although the game improves on so many levels, there are a few concerning issues that have popped up during my time playing the game. One of the most concerning being that some campaign missions straight up glitched and I was not able to complete them. This happened a number of times on quite a few different stages of the campaign. Although this can be patched at a later time, this was a bad sight to see from the initial release.
Secondly there is an issue I have seen concerning siege weapons. In the past, siege weapons didn’t seem to be that annoying because they either had a limited range or could be seen coming in. The ballista in general are too powerful due to their range in comparison to how far their particle effect goes. It involves you having to block throughout your fights or having to take the alternate routes to take them down. If there’s one thing you do not want to be doing in a Dynasty Warriors game it is block, you want to run around, hack & slash and just dominate the field.
The only other slight issue that was encountered a lot were frame rate drops, but in these kinds of games it is to be expected. After all, you will be fighting thousands of opponents at once with some pretty stylish and flamboyant attacks that involve tons of particle effects. Frame rate drops are not that bad of an issue as you can still play the game perfectly fine in most cases. Even if the frame rate drops can be expected from a Dynasty Warriors game, it is still a shame to see it apparent here where we might have been able to see permanent 60 FPS gameplay.
Overall it is great to see that Dynasty Warriors 8 is a great improvement to the series. It encompasses all that the previous games have included and has continued to improve. Although there are some issues that will bother you if you encounter them, they can be patched out in time. If you want to experience some pure fun involving warriors with insanely badass attacks, then Dynasty Warriors 8 is definitely the game for you.
What do you think of Dynasty Warriors 8? Is it as powerful as the mighty Lu Bu or is it as puny as a cuddly toy? Let us know what you think of the game in the comments below and share your experiences of the game on the VGU Forums.
Some Bugs Can Interfere With Your Experience
More Officers Than Ever Before
Siege Weapons At Times Seem Overpowered In Places
Combat Feels More Smooth and Visceral
Slight Frame Rate Drops At Times
Online Capabilities On Everything You Do