Real Talk By: KJ
In this Super Edition of Dynasty Warriors 8, Lu Bu now has his own story mode. We enjoyed the overly aggressive voice acting of his character. Seeing a man blast through waves of enemies virtually unscathed, has always been a highlight. Now you’re the one in complete control of it all. At this point, you know where his arrogance leads, but the road traveled is still a blast. XL has added another wave of difficulty. This one is ‘Ultimate’. It’s basically a scenario where you do not want to take a hit. So Get Lu Bu at maximum power and give it a shot. Playing on normal is still pretty easy, aside from the challenges laid out on the map. Defend an area, babysit other officers who are nowhere near your power level. Unleash tigers? Yes! Long time fans of the series will appreciate these slight diversions more than most. An effort to spice up the formula has clearly taken place. Completing all goals in specific stages unlocks hypothetical routes. These include alternate endings, and missions. The levels are already plenteous so this is a nice bonus.
5 new warriors were added to the cast. Xtreme Legends sits high with an impressive 82 character roster. One of the new playable warriors is Chen Gong. He is a master strategist, and actually beats people with a scroll. The rule book has been of the table for a while, as another character uses a boat as a weapon. His charge attack lets him surf on it, as water miraculously comes out of the ground. Leveling up fan favorite characters, playing “what if” missions, Two Player Coop Online and off. It’s amazing how the game can handle so many characters on-screen and keep up decent graphics while doing so. This is more prevalent in the PS4 version. You will notice smoother frame-rates, and more detailed armor/weapons fighters have equipped. Hit the “Share” button, and show your unbreakable resolve globally.
Challenge missions are even better with a friend. It’s all crazy fun. Killing as many soldiers possible before the time runs out. Another task has players running the gauntlet against top generals. How many enemies can you send off a cliff? Race to the end of a level, jumping on platforms, dodging enemies. These bonus missions are a slick addition to the proceedings.
Gameplay feels tight. Combos are extended, characters have 3 musou attacks. Two grounded and one air. In two player mode you can still combine specials together and own everyone on-screen (who isn’t Lu Bu). 492 Different Weapons means you will button mash in style. Little touches along the way make the game better. For example Zhao Yun’s staff bends a bit when striking. His particular weapon would do that in life, its cool to see Koei go the extra mile.
One complaint I have is that the main characters should do a better job of staying alive on their own. Battlefields are still big. Having to run to the complete other side of a map to protect Liu Bei from two Tigers, then returning to the boss, can get tedious. Perhaps players could issue commands to the other leads (send a messenger their way maybe?), diverting them from those scenarios. This would save the player some useless travel time. Or just improve the A.I.
For Fans that have stuck with the series, this is an easy game to recommend. DW8 XL is loaded with nice Rock music, characters, and diverse stages. Nonetheless it is still a button mashing conquest. For those that can handle this style of play, a lot of content comes with it. While the PS4 version is a solid step in the right direction, I look forward to an all out Next-Gen Dynasty Warriors. Could you imagine what it would be like? Better graphics of course, always steady 60 FPS game-play. How about better draw distances, and no character ghosting. Tons of enemies, all detailed as the main characters. You can’t help but think of the possibilities, since XL and 8 as a whole feels like it’s going towards that next plateau.
Dynasty Warriors 8 Xtreme Legends Gets
Out of Five
-Repetition will deter some
-Repeating In-Battle Dialogue gets annoying
-Need Smarter Allies