Nintendo Switch is home to some great games but there are some genres that haven’t made the jump the hardware. One of these is a proper Dynasty Warriors, but with this latest release of Dynasty Warriors 8, this gap is now fulfilled as well.
Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition is perhaps the most feature complete release of the game so far. If this wasn’t obvious from the name, this includes the original Dynasty Warriors 8 and its expansion, Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends. If you are not a fan and have never played any Dynasty Warriors game, it is a bit hard to get into the series since this is the eight installment for the mainline games. The characters are well established by now and their personalities and traits are well-known among the fans.
Dynasty Warriors 8 does keep it beginner friendly for the gameplay by offering a lengthy and detailed tutorial that should help you learn most of the moves. As a port for the Nintendo Switch, it is technically sound without any major issues that affect the enjoyment. Nintendo Switch offers a performance that is also solid enough that you are not going to feel any input delay, but the enemy count does feel a little reduced in certain encounters. It might be just my imagination though, so don’t take it as a fact.
The performance comes at the cost of a severe downgrade in the visual quality as expected from this port. Dynasty Warriors 8 runs at 60 FPS (or at least feels like it) but the character models are just plain and look like they are from the last generation of consoles. Normally the games are not really a looker so this is not a concern as long as the game plays fine, which it does for the most part. Load times are nominal while cutscenes offer some nice presentation.
Do you like endless hack and slash gameplay? This is what you will be doing in the story and other gameplay modes for Dynasty Warriors 8. There is a lot of combat here but most of it boils down to repeating the same combos. You can switch weapons and use some special abilities, but most of the combat remains focused on clearing many enemies while keeping the combo chain going on for a long time. It becomes an obsession at some point that you just can’t stop while running from one place to the next, you slaughter any threat along the way.
Dynasty Warriors 8 doesn’t really do things differently here. It offers four different factions for you to pick for the story mode where each faction has their own variations and views of the story mode. You can also enjoy the different gameplay modes like Ambition and Challenge mode. They are all nice distractions but don’t come close to the main story campaign, and this is the one which will take most of your time.
One of the major new gameplay innovation this time is the “Three-Point System” offering each weapon an affinity. Weapons are now classified as “Heaven”, “Earth”, or “Man” thus adding some strategy to the combat. Each affinity is weak to the other so there is dynamic combat at play where you pick your weapons carefully. Since you get the choice to select two weapons for yourself, there is always the chance to make a wrong move and get stuck with one that is weak against the enemy general’s weapon. If you do have the upper hand, you can take advantage of it by triggering a storm rush attack.
Despite the dated visuals, it is safe to say that this is the best entry in the Dynasty Warriors series just because of how horrible Dynasty Warriors 9 ended up as an open world game. Dynasty Warriors 8 sticks closer to its roots but adds some nice gameplay mechanics and with a solid performance, the dated visuals don’t’ really detract much from the experience.
Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition Review (Switch)
Game Reviewed on: Switch
Game description: "Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends" introduces entirely new levels of fun to the refreshing gameplay vanquishing swarms of enemies with mighty warriors found in "Dynasty Warriors 8.
Final Score - 8/108/10
This is a technically efficient port for Dynasty Warriors 8 with a solid performance that adds plenty of extra content to the game. It is easily the best Dynasty Warriors available now on the Nintendo Switch.