Dynasty Warriors franchise has been going strong since they debut in their current action form in the early days of the PlayStation 2, which has attracted huge followings and acclaim for Koei. It seems that gamers either absolutely love the franchise, or loathe it. Well now today we are checking out the recently released Dynasty Warriors 5: Xtreme Legends, an expansion of sorts of the game Dynasty Warriors 5. So can this hack and slash adventure offer enough new material to really bring this game to a must have Christmas present? Read our full review to find out now!
So let me just start by giving both sides of the argument of why Dynasty Warrior games are great and why others feel that they are not. Well first off, for the side that do enjoy these games as there are many they seem to just love the constant hacking and slashing and don’t mind that it is mindless, because it is fun. The other side wants to see more from this series then just hacking and slashing, but instead want to see some changes in the series. Without letting you know which side I am on, let’s just say one of those sides wins out heavily in this game.
Let me just start out by saying that I truly felt that Xtreme Legends had a fantastic opportunity of being successful with this game, because of this new Destiny mode. In it, you start out by creating your character and then it is your job to take your character from the bottom and bring them to the top. Well creating your character is easy and can be done pretty quickly with a nicely created tool. From creating your character, it is your job to listen to your commander so you can move your way up the ranks and learn new abilities. This all sounds well and good on paper, but in the end Xtreme Legends just never makes this mode all that interesting, and it is way too repetitive to play.
The other big mode in Xtreme Legends is actually the Xtreme mode, which is basically just a fancy word for survival. Where basically you just want to see how far you can get through a level without dying. There is nothing to save your life with, so basically it is all up to you to continue through the level as carefully as possible without dying. This mode really is just as simple as that and never once tries to offer anything new to that. The Xtreme Mode is good and is worth playing for a while, but not for any extreme lengths of time.
In the end, Xtreme Legends is literally Dynasty Warriors 5 with some new maps and the Destiny mode, which on paper sounds like a fantastic idea, but in the end really doesn’t amount to anything at all. The gameplay itself is solid, and unchanged from its predecessor. The gameplay is good but the modes in the game struggle to be interesting and in the end you are getting a pretty mediocre at best Dynasty Warriors game.
The visuals of DW5: Xtreme Legends are good and will be very similar to what you saw in DW5. The character models are very nicely designed, with plenty of detail and they offer up enough in terms of detail in the new maps to really keep things respectable. There are no really frame rate issues, nor are there any real overly bad problems with the visuals themselves. If you liked the presentation of DW5, then you will continue to find them attractive in DW5: Xtreme Legends.
I have to say that I really don’t mind mindless action hack and slash experiences. In fact I really enjoyed the recent Spartan: Total Warrior game from Creative Assembly. But what separates Spartan from DW5: Xtreme Legends is the fact that Spartan tries to bring in variety, while Xtreme Legends seems content to continue with its formulaic gameplay and adds a few minor updates here and there. The new modes the game had to offer were good ideas, but in the end both were nothing overly spectacular. I was hoping to see a much more engaging experience in the destiny mode, but in the end that mode just did not feel overly impressive. If you enjoy all the DW games in the past then you will continue to in Xtreme Legends, but for me I was hoping for more than was given.
I would not say that DW5: Xtreme Legends is a bad game, but I think it is a game that is very under developed. The ideas for this game were there, especially in the destiny mode, but when you play this mode it just really does not offer any sort of interesting experience. However, if you are a fan of the Dynasty Warriors series and want another quick and inexpensive fix, then DW5: Xtreme Legends may be a game worth checking out. But for everyone else, you are probably better off passing on this game and hoping the DW6 has much more to offer.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.