I have never played a Dynasty Warriors game before but always remember when I worked in Game over ten years ago that new versions were always a sellout. However, as a PC gamer, it has never really been on my radar. Sure, there was a Dynasty Warriors 4 released back in 2005 but it was a port, which I historically stayed clear of.
This past Christmas I was lucky enough to receive a Nintendo Switch and even though this version is out on PC, the game felt more at home on the Switch. Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition was developed by Omega Force and published by Koei Tecmo. It was released not only on Nintendo Switch and PC but is also available on Microsoft Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4.
With a massive following and a lot of people loving the game, it’s my chance to see what Dynasty Warriors is all about.
Without spoiling the game, in story mode, Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition follows the stories of the kingdoms of Lu Bu, Wei, Wu and Shu and Jin. Through your actions during the game, you fight for control over these kingdoms. I Started the story of Lu Bu as it was the first choice in the list. You start off the story by being introduced to the tutorial. At first, it was fairly straight forward but looking around with the right analogue stick did take a bit of time to get used to as I primarily use keyboard and mouse.
Then came the first hurdle: Colours. Being a Colourblind gamer (deuteranopia) I struggled on times where the game will ask me to do something that involved colour. This particular tutorial wanted me to hit the enemy once he changes to red but to me, the enemy had always been red. Some games might have used an indicator for these moments but this didn’t so what I ended up doing was constantly hitting the enemy until the tutorial task completed. Other than this, the rest of the tutorial and what I played of the game was fine.
After I had completed the tutorial, it was onto the story. This, I feel might be a ‘marmite’ moment as the good things I have been reading about, I didn’t experience. To me, it was button bashing almost god-like smashing of enemies and at times I could simply walk past the smaller mobs to go straight to the boss.
I played almost 2 hours of story mode and didn’t experience much else other than combo killing mobs and repeating the same action over and over again. The odd thing to me is why you are so much taller than others in the game? It was almost like you were a giant with an oversized weapon crushing ants. I simply didn’t get it.
However, I can certainly see the appeal of the game and can see why there are a lot of fans of the series. It reminds me a little of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon where it was unrealistic fighting but that seems to be the way of those stories and can feel that’s what Dynasty Warriors is trying to be.
Besides the story modes, the other games modes available were Free Mode, Ambition Mode and Challenge Mode. All which showed the same style gameplay as the story mode but will keep fans coming back for more in the different play styles.
I can’t compare the graphics to previous titles of Dynasty Warriors as not only have I never played a game in the series before but its the first on the switch. You can’t adjust the graphics options compared to PC games but for such a small unit the graphics were pretty impressive.
There didn’t seem to be any frame rate issues even when killing mobs of enemies or when a lot of action was taking place, and these are usually key areas in which to see any screen tearing.
The one big issue I had (personally), which goes for most other games, is a lack of colourblind mode. Even if a lot of colour related quest had a symbol instead of colour it would help massively but overall, I was quite impressed with the graphics.
The audio, especially the music, was pretty good as it had some hard banging rock and metal tracks to keep you bashing and smashing through the enemies. I feel the music helped in my 2 hours of gameplay to hit those kill combos. The sound effect was good too and expected of a game such as Dynasty Warriors.
After playing Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition for almost 2 hours, I felt this game was not for me. Even with the cool metal tunes, there was only so much combo mob killing I could do before it got monotonous and honestly, boring.
However, with the other games modes and DLC’s, fans of the series will have more than enough hours put into the game and would enjoy it.
Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition Is certainly a ‘marmite’ type of game: You’re going to love or hate it. If you’re a fan of the previous instalments this should be on the “must play” list as there is quite enough depth to the game to keep you occupied for hours. However, if you’re not a fan of an almost endless mob killing extravaganza then I would stay clear of this game as it really won’t last long and you will end up playing something else.
Disclaimer: We received a code to carry out this review
For more articles from Stuart, click here