Coming into Dynasty Warriors 9, I was excited to be playing one of my favorite game series of all time. I anticipated the hack-n-slash fun that I haven’t experienced since Dragon Quest Warriors on the PlayStation 4, and that was one hella fun game. However, Dynasty Warriors 9 left such a sour taste in my mouth, that it hurts me to say that this might be the worst Dynasty Warriors game in the series.
Game Name: Dynasty Warriors 9
Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Publisher(s): Koei Tecmo Games
Developer(s): Omega Force
Release Date: February 13, 2018
Specs for PC Used: Windows 10 (version 1709), Intel Xeon E3-1231v3, Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB
I don’t know where to start with this review, honestly. Outside of describing the overall game, which is pretty much the fight to protect the Han Dynasty from the Yellow Turban Rebellion. This game somehow leaves me speechless. Not in a good way, might I add. This game is tedious, boring, uninspiring. The complete opposite of what I expect from a Dynasty Warrior title.
I love the Dynasty Warriors games. As redundant as they are, I get a certain enjoyment out of maxing out my combos and getting astronomical numbers in a brain-dead way. However, the way that Omega Force entertained this idea in Dynasty Warriors 9 is not good. The open world experience doesn’t fit the Musou genre, and it shows, especially after they did such a damn good job with Dragon Quest Warriors and Hyrule/Fire Emblem Warriors. But honestly, that wasn’t the start of my problems with this game. Allow me to go into full detail.
Complete And Utter Mess
Our review code was sent over the Thursday prior to the release date. Which should have given me ample time to play and get this review knocked out. Right? Sadly, that wasn’t the case as I couldn’t play the game when I was finally able to boot it up. Don’t get me wrong, the game booted up, loaded, ran smoothly at 60fps on the highest settings for my PC. The game looked amazing. The only issue was…keyboard and controller support were borked for the entire weekend. When I attempted to start my game with my Xbox One controller, I couldn’t do ANYTHING. The controls got scrambled, while keyboard support just didn’t work as intended. Completely unplayable on the PC front.
I wasn’t able to navigate through the menus whatsoever. I simply was unable to play the game as intended with the attacks or confirmation keys. Nothing worked, at all. I was steamed (no pun intended.) I didn’t pick the game back up until after release, where the controller issues were patched, thank goodness, but it didn’t resolve much of my issues with the game as a whole. This is why I am not a fan of day one patches. If you’re going to provide a game for review purposes, I shouldn’t have to wait for a patch. Nor should a patch be needed to address something as simple as the controls. I thought Koei Tecmo might have learned from their last PC release of Nioh, where their initial lackluster efforts garnered widespread criticism.
By now, you’re probably wondering I’m exaggerating about my woes. Expect, I only wish that was the case. This game is a complete and utter mess as it stands right now. I’m not the only person who shares this sentiment, as a quick glance over to the Steam page for Dynasty Warriors 9 should be all you need. Currently, the game is sitting at over THREE THOUSAND negative reviews. That’s 86% of those who purchased the game not being too thrilled about it. Overwhelmingly Negative, that’s being nice.
The story and characters are unengaging. You primarily play as Cao Cao, military leader tasked to stop the Yellow Turban Rebellion. That’s pretty much all that I remember. You’re tasked with some of the most tedious tasks throughout the game, such as finding violet plants, crafting jewels and defeating enemy generals to fortify your defenses. The controls don’t help the tedious nature, as the camera is pretty janky, and the button combinations have you doing too much at times. Hell, the crafting system is silly, as are the equip menus. Nothing about this game even makes me want to talk about it, in all honesty. There are over 80 characters that you can unlock, but honestly, I don’t think anyone will be inspired to even get that far. I definitely wasn’t.
Review Disclosure Statement: Dynasty Warriors 9 was provided to us by Koei Tecmo Games USA for review purposes. For more information on how we review video games and other media/technology, please go review our Review Guideline/Scoring Policy for more info.
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There is no real reason to play this game, and I'm not ashamed to tell you to do either one of two things: Go play Fire Emblem, Hyrule Warriors or even Dragon Quest Warriors. Or put Omega Force and Koei Tecmo on notice for putting such little effort into this title.
Dynasty Warriors 9 is a waste of a video game. It was supposed to be a progression from the previous Dynasty Warriors, instead, we got this mess. No bueno.