Koei Tecmo’s recently released some new footage of Dynasty Warriors 9 and we break down how the latest gameplay footage looks.
Dynasty Warriors 9 Gameplay Footage Released
Koei Tecmo Games recently released some gameplay footage of their up-coming release: Dynasty Warriors 9. There are a few news articles about this game scattered about the internet, most of which paint this game in only a positive light. This article views this game from a technical and analytical stand point. Dynasty Warriors is basically kept alive thanks to sales generated by the game’s Cult following. Yet the game has seen very little change over the years.
This latest Dynasty Warriors footage really doesn’t do much to convince us in the way of wanting to buy this game when it’s released. It doesn’t even look like the same game that has been teased so far. We’re hoping it’s just really early footage, because the game still appears to need a lot of extra polish.
So let’s break down the previous gameplay reveals and trailers, look at what is good, what’s bad, and what is just downright terrible. Believe me when I say: Dynasty Warriors 9’s chances looked a whole lot better before the new gameplay footage was released. The first footage is the official trailer and I think you’ll agree with me that looks very pretty indeed.
A short 18 second trailer showing one of the “Heroes” that you can use against what looks like a concept-art backdrop. Not much that you can get from this except the fact that it’s a new game. Koei Tecmo Europe even put the wrong number at the end of the clip. The reason that the video ends with a massive “8” is because the western releases are one ahead in the series over the Japanese counterparts. This is because of Dynasty Warriors 2 was called “Shin Sangokumusō” in Japan.
Dynasty Warriors 9 – History. Reborn
This trailer shows some of the things to look forward to when Dynasty Warriors 9 drops. Graphically, this game appears to be current generation. The game looks beautiful. The only issue that I can see is some wobbling of the screen which is indicative of some screen tear. The machine that was used to capture the footage is the cause of this though, not the game itself.
Koei Games tout an open world, which has never been done in a Dynasty Warriors game. Showing stunning landscapes and more inhabited locations. All the environments are stunningly generated and the architecture is true to that era. If that’s not enough, seasons and time of day give the game a new dynamic. An era of truly competitive games that are exceptionally cinematic.
So far, there are a selection of four characters whose weapons and fighting styles are all extremely unique. The only let down really, is that this is still going to be button-bashfest. Not a true RPG worthy of the environment the folks at Koei Tecmo have dreamt up.
The Latest and NOT Greatest
It’s in this trailer that show Koei Tecmo’s latest reveal is pretty concerning. I don’t think it’s anywhere near what the previous trailers, particularly when it comes to graphic fidelity. This trailer looks like it was made ten years ago with animations to match.
Gone are the shiny landscapes, no more smooth-flowing combos with cool special effects. It even appears the dynamic seasons and time of day are gone, although these are likely to stay in some form or fashion. None of the good bits and all the bad. Watching the most recently publicized gameplay almost made me sick. There are so many bad things to point out that I don’t know where to start.
Koei Tecmo’s most recent reveal features animations that are beyond Mass Effect: Andromeda terrible. The clothing looks buggy and way too floaty, the combat animations are halting and jerky and the animations of the NPC enemies are PS2 quality. Right at the start of the video, there’s a shot of four heroes and a couple of grunts. In this twelve second excerpt, it looks like the characters are shaking uncontrollably, like some sort of palsied junky.
The scene changes and there is a shot of one of the playable heroes running around the world with the tail of their jacket moving around like a flag being waved at a 90’s strobe disco. It’s just too much. I get where Koei are going with this, they want the animations to be more realistic. Yet it seems like they’ve gone too far, and just don’t have any experience with it. Following through this clip, ignoring the horrendous clothing animations, you can see the awful screen-tearing.
I struggle to understand where the screen-tearing comes from because the game’s graphics in this footage do not seem to be intensive enough to warrant that sort of issue. For fuck’s sake, why not just put on V-sync? It’s there to stop this sort of thing, isn’t it? This is the point where I began watching the rest of the video with one raised eyebrow. After the character running through a non-descript, boring landscape, he hops on a horse!
Whilst on the horse with some whacky Naginata on steroids, unfortunately, screen-tear is an issue yet again. Not only is screen-tear an issue, there is also the issue with the character’s flappy jacket clipping through the horse. Why not just make the flap sit on the horse’s rump or just be tucked under the player? Such an obvious solution to a disappointing issue that should’ve been addressed.
No, I don’t mean music. Music in this clip is all MIDI-based, or in other words: Crappy elevator music. During the pony ride, you see the beginning of a battle. Unfortunately, there isn’t any evidence of horse-back combat like in previous iterations so why would you bother to include a character on a horse?
Moving on away from previous issues, I would like to ask one question which is pertinent to me: Why the fuck would you include a “sneak” mechanic in a hack’n’slash game?! It just defies belief. This game along with all previous Dynasty Warriors games are all about diving headlong into swarms of enemies and carving a bloody swathe through them. Thankfully this is only a very early peek at the game so there is time for them to properly work this into the game. It would be a crying shame for them to spend time on something that doesn’t fit with the game and no one uses.
The latest gameplay reveal video might not be the most stunning piece of footage that I have had cross my desk recently but it has a lot of potential. There are a lot of quick-fixes for many of the issues that I have raised, and many of which will (hopefully) be addressed before they consider releasing any other footage.
If you enjoy the Hero-based hack’n’slash franchise, the most recent game hopefully won’t leave you bored. It also shows a lot of potential for breaking into other markets’ audiences such as the RPG crowd or fans of open world games. The games trailer promise current-generation graphics, a dynamic season and time of day system, explosive combat and a plethora of weapons and combat-styles to suit almost anyone’s preferences.
Have a look at the current eight minute long gameplay footage but take it with a pinch of salt because this is a first peek at the core of the game, not a final, polished and finished product.