Koei brings us a weapons fighter with a strong base in reality.
No one expected a furious fighting game from Koei, who had pretty much stuck to mind-numbingly accurate historical war sims up to this point. Dynasty Warriors has its share of historical accuracy, mostly in the form of characters and their preferred weapons, but don?t let this fool you - this is no boring history lesson.
Each fighter uses his favorite weapon, which range from enchanted maces with a short reach, to long spears and glaives with a maddeningly long reach. The combat has been honed to represent actual weapons combat, and with the exception of a few high-jumping moves, it seems fairly accurate.
Gamers familiar with Namco?s Soul Blade may notice the lack of crazy combos, but when you consider that the game runs at 60fps, you begin to understand the reason for the sacrifice. This doesn?t pose much of a problem though - the relatively simple combos can be chained to great effect.
No weapons fighter would be complete without an extensive defense system that mirrors real life combat. Dynasty Warriors has three separate ways to avoid being hit: block, parry, and redirect, which leaves your opponent defenseless with their back to you. The downside is this takes a long time to learn to do instinctively, but is ultimately extremely rewarding.
Graphically, the game resembles Tekken II, although in play it is entirely different. This is definitely a thinking person?s fighter, and button mashing will get you nothing but a kicked butt. Koei has gone out on a limb with this one, and hopefully it will pay off for them. They reportedly have more action titles already in the works. We can?t wait.