I truly love Warriors Orochi 3. I played it to death on the PlayStation 3 when it was initially launched, and to this day it is my most played Wii U game. Having had the opportunity to play the Ultimate version, which is due for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One (as well as the PlayStation 3 and the PlayStation Vita) shortly, I enjoyed my time with the preview build immensely, albeit it’s clearly going to be a fairly easy cash grab.
First up, though, there are new characters to what was an already impressive roster (there are now 145 in total), making Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate the clear “Smash Bros.” of action games. In the preview I got to play with Sophitia of Soul Calibur fame, but unfortunately not Sterk from the Atelier franchise, which I just know is going to be my favourite character of all. Sophitia does play differently to the other fighters in the roster, which a short attack range courtesy of her envelope opener-sized sword. But she hits hard and her fighting moves look like they fit in with her fighting game character type.
It’s been a while since I last played Warriors Orochi 3, but there also seem to be some new levels to play on. I’m told there is an Atelier stage, but I didn’t get to play that one. Regardless, there were already a lot of stages to fight through in the original game. Coupled with the new gameplay modes that are on offer outside of the main storyline, and you’ve got a game that will last dozens, if not hundreds of hours if you allow it to. I didn’t get to try these new gameplay modes in my preview time, but I like the sound of them, at least.
There’s also some new enhancement to the combat system, with some even more powerful attacks, as well as the ability to summon allies into battle. The combat system follows the same basic path as previous games (you’ll be taking three warriors into battle and need to build relationships between them to unlock more levels), but the additional attacks and formula tweaks do make it feel like this version is the final refinement that could have been made to it.
But the big question is surely whether it will be worth a purchase if you’ve already played one of its releases? Having played Samurai Warriors 4 immediately before playing this, it’s obvious that Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate is an upscaled game on the PlayStation 4, at best. The graphical fidelity even looks a step behind Dynasty Warriors 8 Xtreme Legends Complete. That’s not necessarily a criticism, because it does still look good, it’s just hard to go back so soon after experiencing something that looks as good as Samurai Warriors 4.
I’m not going to make any formal judgements about the game before I’ve had the chance to dig back into it in full. I love this game anyway, and I’m keenly looking forward to it. It’s just that we’ve got such a heavy Warriors lineup for the rest of the year (Hyrule Warriors is coming to the Wii U shortly too, remember), that I worry that Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate might find itself unfairly ignored.
– Matt S.
Find me on Twitter: @digitallydownld