Dynasty Warriors 8
|Dynasty Warriors 8|
North American cover art
|Genre(s)||Hack and slash, Action|
|Distribution||DVD, Blu-ray Disc|
Dynasty Warriors 8 (真・三國無双7 Shin Sangokumusō 7 , known in Japan as Shin Sangokumusou 7) is a Beat 'em up video game and the eighth official installment of the Dynasty Warriors series. It is developed by Omega Force and published by Koei. The story is based on the Chinese writer Luo Guanzhong's historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms. The game was unveiled on October 30, 2012 via Jump Magazine and released on February 28, 2013 for the PlayStation 3 in Japan. On April 3, 2013, it was confirmed by Tecmo Koei that there would be an overseas release for both North America and Europe in July 2013. It was released on both PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 for both physical and digital release. The option of English and Japanese voice overs also return, where there is also an option to change the subtitles to English, French or German.
Having more than 80 characters featured in the game, the game is reusing the same system and engine of Dynasty Warriors 7 and instead focused on adding more content for replayability as well as several tweaks in the combat system. An expansion, Shin Sangokumusou 7 Moushouden was released for PlayStation 3 on November 28, 2013. Versions for PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 4 are developed as well, both of which package the expansion with the original version. The PlayStation Vita version was released on the same day as PlayStation 3, while the PlayStation 4 version will be released as a launch title for the console in Japan.
Gameplay and Features
Story Mode and Free Mode
The story mode retains the same faction-based storyline and returns with seamless cutscenes. In addition, each of the characters of the "Other" faction has one scenario dedicated to them, forming a loose "Other" faction story mode, in a first for the series. Stages now have more freedom of progression for the player, unlike the previous installment, which was strongly preset in means of stage routes. A selection of up to four characters will be offered for each stages in Story Mode, instead of controlling a pre-defined character; the mission objectives in each level differ based on the character chosen. The story has been entirely rewritten, with each of the four factions' stories dividing into a historical path and a hypothetical path at a critical portion of their stories. Each mission may have a number of optional objectives which unlock additional side story missions or alter the course of history; in order to unlock the hypothetical path, players must complete all of the optional objectives in both the main and side stories prior to the critical point of the storyline. The game also allows a co-op play of the story mode and it can be played both offline and online. In the previous installment to the franchise, Dynasty Warriors 7, the story mode was only single-player.
The music for the hypothetical portion of each Story Mode is taken from earlier Dynasty Warriors installments, with four pieces specifically remixed for this game (one each from Dynasty Warriors 3, 5, 6, and 7). Furthermore, the four kingdom leitmotifs introduced in Dynasty Warriors 7 return and are further expanded upon in the soundtrack of Dynasty Warriors 8.
Free mode returns for the first time since Dynasty Warriors 6 in terms of main game. Players will be given opportunity to play as an opposing faction in the stages a la Dynasty Warriors 3 and 4, instead of being forced to play in a faction as in Dynasty Warriors 7: Xtreme Legends.
A new game mode, called the "Ambition Mode", has been introduced. In it, the player is tasked to create a social base for peasants called the "Tongquetai Tower" and to make Emperor Xian visit it. To raise the tower's status, the player must partake in three different kind of battles; Skirmish battles which give materials to construct the tower, Raid battles which increase fame, and Large-scale battles which can recruit new partners. Players start out with the weapon shop as their sole base facility. More can be added or expanded upon as the town gradually becomes populated with people. These include a food market, a trade shop, a menagerie, etc.
The game features new battle mechanics that rely on a new concept called 'Commander Affinity'. One of these mechanics is 'Storm Rush', a multi hitting attack that requires repeatedly pressing the attack buttons. This can be triggered when the players affinity is higher than the opponents. It is shown through a blue gauge above the opponent which decreases as you attack. Storm Rush is then initiated when the gauge is fully depleted. The other new mechanic is 'Switch Counter', a counterblow attack that allows you to avoid a hard hitting attack from an opponent while also blowing them away before switching to another weapon. This can be triggered when the players affinity is lower than the opponents. It is shown through a red exclamation mark where as the opponent does a strong attack, a marker will appear giving you the chance to counter. The last example is Rage Awakening, this mechanic is similar to the Rage system from Dynasty Warriors 5. This requires the awakening gauge to full which can be achieved by attacking enemies. When it is full, it can be initiated with R3 where the player's stats dramatically increase while the gauge slowly depletes. It also merges the players musou bars together where during this status, the player is able to perform an 'awakening musou' which is a powerful move similar to the musou from previous Dynasty Warriors games. This continues as long as the player holds the O button until the musou gauge is empty.
In the previous installment, each character could hold up to two musou attacks. In this installment, the number of musou attacks is increased to three, which in order to use all three of them, requires the player to strengthen their character.
The game retains the EX weapon system, though all characters now have unique EX weapon types, instead of sharing it with each other. Examples include Sun Jian featuring a new nine-ringed blade. This is a dao that has a total of nine rings that connect to the sword's back. The rings are able to produce sound that inflicts damage upon enemies.
The game retains the weapon-switching feature. All weapons from Dynasty Warriors 7 and its expansions return, with many new ones added. Weapon Proficiency makes a return, though the weapon seals is not, instead replaced by "Weapon Tempering" system. The system resembles the weapon fusion used in the Warriors Orochi series, in which players can combine two weapons to create a stronger one or trade three weapons to receive two stronger ones. Players can keep multiple copies of a single weapon type which may have different stats and elements on them.
A weapon's type now includes an affinity, being one of the following three elements: 天 Heaven, 地 Earth, 人 Man. With these three affinity elements, a triangular relationship connecting the three in an infinite manner determines which affinity will outdo one another. This triangular relationship is similar to Rock-paper-scissors. The relationship states that the "Man" affinity is effective against the "Heaven" affinity, the "Heaven" affinity is effective against the "Earth" affinity, and the "Earth" affinity is effective against the "Man" affinity.
Dynasty Warriors 8 features upgraded graphics compared to previous games in the series, with less lag and fewer framerate issues. The weather effects on the stages have been improved and there are more gimmicks implemented in the system, adding a more unique playstyle.
Enemy and Ally A.I. in this title is designed to punish players who fail to pay attention to their allies. Recently, the AI has been revised again for difficulty in the oversea ports to appeal to North American audiences. The morale gauge also returns. Horses are now called by pressing L2 where if held down, players can automatically mount their horse. Clothing will also be dirtied throughout the course of battle.
* Denotes new characters to the series ** Denotes characters added through expansion titles
Note: While not new, Zuo Ci makes his first appearance in the series since Dynasty Warriors 5 and its expansions.
Note: Chen Gong, Fa Zheng, Lu Lingqi, Yu Jin, and Zhu Ran are set to be added in Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends.
Wei Voice Actors
Wu Voice Actors
Shu Voice Actors
Jin Voice Actors
Other Voice Actors
The game has received generally mixed to positive reviews.
An expansion, Shin Sangokumusou 7 Moushouden was released on November 28, 2013 in Japan for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita, as well as launch title for PlayStation 4. It includes additional features not present in Dynasty Warriors 8, such as a new story mode dedicated to Lü Bu and his allies, new stages for the rest of the kingdoms and other characters, new content for Ambition Mode, Challenge Mode, a new EX attack for each character, and five new playable characters, Chen Gong, Fa Zheng, Lu Lingqi, Yu Jin, and Zhu Ran. It also enables cross-platform multiplayer. Players may also have the option to buy just the expansion or a package with the original version through either physical discs or digital download.
- Dynasty Warriors
- Samurai Warriors
- Tecmo Koei
- Romance of Three Kingdoms
- Three Kingdoms
- Warriors Orochi
- List of Dynasty Warriors characters
- "Shin Sangoku Musou 7 release date". Twitter. December 3, 2012. Retrieved December 4, 2012.
- PS3F (December 6, 2012). "Dynasty Warriors 8: New Faces Plus Japanese Release Date Announced". PLAYSTATION NEWS INTERNATIONAL. Retrieved 6 December 2012. "Shin Sangoku Musou 7 [ Dynasty Warriors 8 ] will storm PS3s in Japan on February 28th. A western release is likely but remains TBA."
- "DYNASTY WARRIORS 8 RELEASE DATE CHANGE". Tecmo Koei Europe. June 21, 2013. Retrieved June 21, 2013.
- http://www.dynastywarriors8.eu/au. Missing or empty
- "Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Is Coming To PS3 This November". Siliconera. August 20, 2013. Retrieved August 21, 2013.
- "Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Is A PlayStation 4 Launch Title". Siliconera. September 9, 2013. Retrieved September 9, 2013.
- Tally "xelissa" Callahan. "Dynasty Warriors 8 Announced for PS3 Co-Op Story expected (story mode to include 77 characters and new battle mechanics)". Retrieved 31 October 2012. "What IS known is that the story mode will support a roster of a whopping 77 characters, ten of which have been revealed so far."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Retrieved 1 November 2012. "There will be more than 77 characters appearing in total (71-75 is most plausible)"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Retrieved March 3, 2013. "DW8's concept is "Infinite Deepening" rather than "Evolution", thus focusing more on the quantitative addition"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Retrieved 1 November 2012. "Story Mode is still faction-oriented and has seamless cutscenes"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Retrieved February 20, 2013. "Story Mode is also confirmed to have storyline for Other faction"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 1 November 2012. "DW8 will have more freedom in the stage's progress route, unlike DW7 which had a quite preset progress route"
- Li_An_Di. "Post #3524". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 7 November 2012. "It was confirmed today that the story mode you can pick numerous characters per stage depending on the stage. And the what if missions were confirmed last week. So no need to worry Like the example blackite gave 'Hei Fei you can choose between Zhang Liao, Yue Jin or Li Dian"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 1 November 2012. "The stories are being rewritten from scratch. There may be also what-if stories"
- Tally "xelissa" Callahan. "Dynasty Warriors 8 Announced for PS3 Co-Op Story expected (story mode to include 70 characters and new battle mechanics)". Retrieved 31 October 2012. "So far, the game has only been announced for the PS3, and while a Co-Op Story Mode is expected, there's no word yet on how many players will be able to play together, and if the co-op is online, offline, or both."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 1 November 2012. "Free mode is returning."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 1 November 2012. "There will be also another new game mode for the replay value"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 25 January 2013. "New mode is Commander mode"
- Tally "xelissa" Callahan. "Dynasty Warriors 8 Announced for PS3 Co-Op Story expected (story mode to include 70 characters and new battle mechanics)". Retrieved 31 October 2012. "Dynasty Warriors 8 also features new battle mechanics, which change based on the enemy commander's affinity. These new mechanics include Storm Rush (triggered when weapon affinity reaches a certain level), Variable Counter (a counterblow which sacrifices the weapon and grants the user a random new one), and Awakening Action (empowers skills as well as XP gain when a certain number of enemies have been killed while it's going)."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8 Information Thread". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 5 December 2012. "All characters now have 3 Musou attacks. 1st Musou: O, 2nd Musou: R1+O, 3rd Musou: Aerial O. The Musou variety is unlocked as the character is strengthened up"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 1 November 2012. "EX Weapon clones are to be reduced as much as possible. Character's main weapons are basically based on their latest weapons in DW7 series."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 21 November 2012. "Sun Jian is decloned with the weapon Nine-Ringed Blade, a Dao blade that has nine rings attached to its back which can emit sounds that can damage enemies."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 1 November 2012. "Weapon switch system from DW7 is returning. All DW7 weapon types up to DW7E will be returning along with more brand-new weapons."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8 Information Thread". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 5 December 2012. "Weapon types have one of these 3 affinity elements: 天 Heaven, 地 Earth, 人 People There is a triangular relation to determine which affinity is better than which, Heaven is good against Earth, Earth is good against People, People is good against Heaven"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8 Information Thread". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 5 December 2012. "When the player's weapon is advantageous, a greenish Vigor Gauge appears at the top of the officer's name & health. (the red circle is only for marking) An outer circle forms around the gauge, and when the circle is full, Storm Rush is activated. On the contrary if the weapon is disadvantageous, a red mark appears instead. If the enemy officer is hit with a Variable Attack when they're doing their strong attacks, the Variable Attack changes into Variable Counter."
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 21 November 2012. "Stages are to be revamped with better graphics, weather effects and more visible gimmicks"
- BlackKite. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 25 January 2013. "Story Mode is confirmed to be playable in co-op, both offline and online"
- "Warriors Orochi 3 for PS3 - Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More". Metacritic. Retrieved July 21, 2013.
- "Warriors Orochi 3 for Xbox 360 - Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More". Metacritic. Retrieved July 21, 2013.
- "Dynasty Warriors 8 (PS3)". GameRankings. Retrieved July 21, 2013.
- "Dynasty Warriors 8 (X360)". GameRankings. Retrieved July 21, 2013.
- Jim SterlingTony Coles. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
- Tony Coles. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
- Chris Schilling. "Dynasty Warriors 8". Dynasty Warriors Series. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
- Official Japanese site (Japanese)
- Official North American site
- Official European site
- Official Xtreme Legends Japanese site (Japanese)