March 27, 2019 at 2:17 PM #798
Dynasty Warriors 9
Rating: 1.0 – Terrible
DW9 would have been a bad game 15 years ago, it’s an abomination today.
Intro: I used to be a Dynasty Warriors fan for a long time and have usually found myself defending it from its many critics over the years, I, like many other loyal fans always thought DW is just a mindless fun and doesn’t have to be anything more. Koei really took that to heart and have given us nothing more. But with DW9, even the fun has disappeared, and I think it’s time to ask for more from Koei.
The biggest addition to DW9 is the Â¡Â®open-world’ aspect and it isn’t even really an open world. What I mean by that, is when devs say Â¡Â®open-world’ people usually expect a big world to explore, towns, cities, caves, many NPCs with different questlines. Think Skyrim, Assassin’s Creed, Witcher 3 etc. The open world here in this game is nothing like that. It’s huge but empty, boring, and it adds nothing to the series. I mean sure you can hunt some animals and do fishingÂ¡Âbut who honestly even wanted that? A fishing minigame is not what this series desperately needs. What the open world DOES do is ruin the flow of the game. In previous DW games, you would choose a stage and take part in a massive battle, like the battle of Chibi or Hefei, iconic battles from the Romance of The Three Kingdoms era. Due to the open-world nature of DW9, you will instead spend a long time riding your horse going from one small skirmish to another to finally open a path for the final major battle. You can bypass the small skirmishes and go directly to the final Â¡Â®boss’ but they will be much tougher. The whole open-world aspect is unnecessary and hurts the flow of the game. The actual fighting mechanics have also seen a change and for the worse. DW8’s mechanics were the best in the series and instead of improving upon it, Koei decided to bring back what I can only describe as DW6’s Renbu system now called Â¡Â®flow attack’ making an already shallow mechanics even worse.
I am making a separate category for the AI because it’s that big of an issue. Dynasty Warriors series has never been known for smart AI, but the fact that DW3 a 17 years old game has better AI than DW9 is insane. Slashing and dicing through thousands of brain-dead soldiers isn’t fun and upping the difficulty level merely causes their life bars to grow. Officers are slightly more aggressive but it’s nowhere near good. When we have games like Monster Hunter New World, with its excellent monsters AI, DW9 becomes all that more jarring.
The graphics are what you would expect from a DW game, the open-world making the flaws all the more obvious. The bigger problem is on the technical side, the framerate specifically. The game consistently dips as low as 20FPS, which is crazy considering Horizon Zero Dawn, a gorgeous game with giant freaking robots and 100x prettier graphics can manage to keep a steady framerate but DW9 can’t. I will give Koei some credit for including day/night cycle and weather effects.
Oh boy. Bad voice acting has become sort of tradition for the Dynasty Warriors series, but just like with the AI, the fact that DW9 has worse voice acting than older entries in the series is simply unacceptable. People were used to bad voice acting decade ago but now with games like Witcher 3 bringing some of the best VA we have had in a video game, THIS is not good enough Koei. The voice acting even lacks basic direction, for example sometimes the actors pronounce Cao Cao as Â¡Â°cow cowÂ¡Â± and other times as Â¡Â°Tsao TsaoÂ¡Â±. Koei did give the options for Japanese and Chinese voice overs, and I recommend switching to either one.
The Dynasty Warriors franchise is in dire need of a revamp and a poorly executed open-world is NOT the answer. Dynasty Warriors 9 simply does not meet the minimum standards most gamers have come to expect in 2018. Koei has a lot of work to do if they want to keep the franchise relevant.
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