Dynasty Warriors 8: Empires - Xbox One

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Also for: PS4
Viewed: 3D Third-person, over the shoulder Genre:
Beat 'Em Up: Hack and Slash
Media: Blu-Ray Arcade origin:No
Developer: Omega Force Soft. Co.: Tecmo Koei Europe
Publishers: Tecmo Koei Europe (GB)
Released: 27 Feb 2015 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 16+
Connectivity: Live online enabled


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With this iteration of Dynasty Warriors being no less than number 8 in the series (and that's only counting the main numbered series) you might think it would be looking long in the tooth. Fans of the hacking, slashing, over-the-top strategy of the series are in for a treat, however, as the old and new collide in a game that feels both fresh and faithful to the series' roots.

Once again the game follows the stories of the kingdoms of Wei, Wu, Shu and Jin through historical military and political figures fighting to gain control of China.

One of the main complaints about the last game has been addressed and each character has their own distinct strengths, weaknesses and play styles now. Gone are the move-sets that basically meant certain characters are clones of each other.

A new feature of combat is Weapon Affinity. Each weapon a player picks up has one of three affinities - Heaven, Earth, or Man, - and is strong against one of the other types and weak against the other.

On the story front, Dynasty Warriors 8 introduces a 'What if?' mode. Taking a break from historical fact, this mode examines what might have happened if key figures had survived to fight another day.

Another (sort of) new mode is Free Mode, which has been absent for a while. This enables players to replay any stage for more loot drops and experience.

With this Empires expansion, the title focuses more closely on tactical and strategic elements of series gameplay. A couple of new goodies are added to the mix. One is a character creation tool, meaning players are no longer left with customising existing characters - they can create one from whole cloth. Also new this time out is the custom scenario mode, which enables to control the very battles they find themselves in!

With an abundance of new modes and features as well as no less than 70 playable characters, there's plenty of meat here for fans of the Dynasty Warriors series.