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Dynasty Warriors 8 Review

Dynasty Warriors 8 Review

You'd think that after so many main series games, spin-offs and alternate franchises, that Dynasty Warriors would be getting a bit stale by now. After all, there are only so many ways to tell the story of the Romance of the Three Kingdoms. Yet just when you think that, Omega Force seem to up the ante and that's definitely the case with Dynasty Warriors 8. It acts as the perfect way to round out this franchise on the current generation before we head off to a new console generation.

If you're new to the Dynasty Warriors scene, the entire franchise is based around the Romance of the Three Kingdoms. It's a story which talks about a rather influential period in Chinese history, where three factions vied for power: Wei, Wu and Shu.

It's customary that you're able to play through campaigns for each of these factions, but after being introduced in recent interactions, Jin is now also a mainstay when it comes to the story campaigns. Additionally, you can now play an "Other" campaign, which opens things up a bit.

To change things up a little, you now don't control the same character throughout the story. Instead, you must pick out of a selection of 3-4 before each chapter of the story begins. It helps to keep things fresh, although it will undoubtedly annoy some people who have very specific favourite characters. The good thing about this is that elements of the story will change ever so slightly depending on which character you choose to play as.

Outside of the Story, Free Mode makes a return. This allows you to undertake any mission you've cleared throughout the campaign, but it does also open up different possibilities. For example, at Luoyang, you can choose either "Escape from Luoyang" or "Eliminate Dong Zhuo". It helps to give Free Mode a bit more spice, outside of being used to just level up your characters.

The major new mode is Ambition Mode. This merges together elements of Conquest Mode from Dynasty Warriors 7, with Dynasty Warriors 7: Empires.

Your objective in Ambition Mode is to try and build a Tongquetai, with the hopes of encouraging the Emperor to visit it. However, quite a lot of work needs to be undertaken before he'll even consider making an appearance. It builds upon previous concepts of having a little "town" where there are shops, but you'll also need to recruit officers, procure fame and gather materials.

When you choose to leave the town to undertake battles, things start to get much more interesting. You get the choice of four different battles to enter into, but they will help you to accomplish different things. First up, you can become embroiled in Skirmishes. These are often very quick, but are good for gaining materials. Next up, there are Great Battles. In this type of fight, there will be considerably more officers on the battlefield - beat them and you will gain them as allies. Last up, you have the Unconventional Battle. By taking part in these, you'll be able to obtain fame more easily.

It's worth pointing out these types just help boost these elements. For example, you can gain allies in any battle, but Great Battles allow you to gain more in one sitting.

Due to the nature of this mode, it actually has quite a through tutorial. It's appreciated and helps you to understand why you need to assign a famous officer to look after the local tearoom.

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