Review by TokyoFuture

"I love the warriors series, but I hate admitting the fact that it is nothing out of the ordinary."

Lets take a trip back to when KOEI released Dynasty Warriors 2 on Ps2, It was an awesome game, nothing could be better than your fav character hacking, slashing and all coupled with blood pumping music and a graphic that was awesome for its time, bullseye. Then, Samurai Warriors was released, Now we have a Japanese Style Dynasty Warriors, Ok cool, similar gameplay, similar awesome music and graphics, but again, nothing much to complain, bullseye. Fast forward a few years later to the near end of 2008, one might be surprised that ... well, not much has changed. Now don't get me wrong, the games are not bad, read my review below and I'll address the main issues.

Story :
The story goes like this, The serpent king, Orochi is back after the first WO instalment and your job is to defeat him AGAIN. Yes, thats the entire story of the whole game, it is THAT simple. Some may find it bad, while others may find it good, personally, I don't love the story but I don't dislike it either. Pretty generic story actually, easy to pick up, easy to forget as well.

Gameplay :
This is where the dillema starts, You have a variety of modes to choose from, Be it the Survival Mode, Dramatic Mode, Free Mode, Story Mode and so on, In the story mode, it's pretty straightforward, at the start, you are given 3 starting characters to kick off the whole story mode, gaining new allies along the way to mix and match as you like. Upon completion, the story mode turns into a "Free mode" kind of environment, in which you are free to use any unlocked characters at any stage of the story mode, so when you have finally completed each kingdom's story mode, you begin to realise that it is no longer any different from the free mode.

You can also unlock various materials and items, as well as fourth weapons that will prove handy to you in the entire game, there are also many characters in the game for you to choose from as well as new characters in this new instalment, but other than that, the rest of the characters are the very same characters we all know from SW/DW except with special moves now.. As with any Warriors game, you also have the option to choose more costumes as you go higher and higher up the tier, you can turn your weak fighter at first into a war machine that will maul the entire battlefield. There are more things I can talk about but I could go on for a day and it won't make a big difference, but you know the deal.

Now lets talk about the bad, overall, this game doesn't really have much bad to say about, but there is one MAJOR flaw in this game, or rather, the whole warriors series, that is probably it's biggest killer of all time, This flaw is also the factor that caused many people to shun away from these games no matter how much upgrades KOEI gives to these games. The word is ... Repetitive, Yes, basically, as like any warriors game, the basic formula is this, you choose your character(s), select a stage, buff them up, enter a stage and beat the daylight out of anyone in your path, and the cycle just repeats. Some may say that there is a survival mode and such, but lets not forget that the meat of the game lies in the Hack N Slash action, which is ALSO its downfall. Some may also say that there are many things to unlock and fourth weapons blah blah blah, Ok sure, I give you that one but tell me, what are you going to do after that? Thats right! Repeat the above action AGAIN. -3 points for this.

Graphics/Sound :
This is a very subjective part to review, I have had people who tell me that the sounds in this game are horrible, while there are also people who tell it kicks ass, I fall on the latter side as I am quite a fan of VGM and the music in the game is well ... just awesome. There are a couple of new tracks in addition to tracks taken from previous games which also kicks ass. The voice acting is also pretty well done in my opinion. The graphics are pretty solid for the PSP, not groundbreaking, but still pretty good, not much to say, a definite step up from the Manga esque graphics used in WO. Overall, pretty solid work from KOEI in this department, thumbs up for that.

Play Time/Replayability :
Well, again like any other warriors games, it is a pretty repetitive game, but has an unseen charm that keeps its loyal fans coming back for more. If you're going for a 100% completion, then I would say that it has some elements of replayability but if you just want to get the game over and done with, then its pretty much just the same old stuff with a little update to it.

Final Recommendation :
Buy it if you want to have an occasional dose of hack n slash action for whatever reasons or if you're a hardcore fan of the series. Otherwise, you can probably pass on this one and still won't lose out that much.

Pros :
Pretty solid graphics, especially in the animations.
Awesome soundtrack.
Gameplay that resembles a double edged sword.
Lots of characters including new ones.

Cons :
Repetitive gameplay that can prove to be a huge problem.
Returning characters from previous games have nothing new to boast of

Final Score : 7/10

Reviewer's Rating:   3.5 - Good

Originally Posted: 12/26/08

Game Release: Musou Orochi: Maou Sairin (JP, 11/27/08)

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