Warriors Orochi Hacks and Slashes Its Way to the PC
While the term “hack-and-slash” certainly means different things to different people, it has become synonymous with the Dynasty and Samurai Warriors series. The only major difference between the two series is which country they are based in, one in Japan and the other in China. However, Koei decided that bringing the two series together would provide the ultimate experience for hardcore fans. And while both series are known for being primarily played on console systems, Warriors Orochi is also available for the PC roughly seven months after its initial release.
It is important to understand exactly what the PC version has to offer the player before diving into the bulk content of the game. With that being said, the typical PC gamer will be surprised to find that there is absolutely no mouse support for Warrior Orochi. All the menus, submenus, and character movements have to be handled entirely using the keyboard, a situation most PC gamers haven’t come across in many years. Nevertheless, the game does allow the player to rebind the controls to better suit certain play styles, but such a feature has become so standard that it can’t be considered sufficient compensation.
Of course, the game also supports the use of a PC-compatible controller such as an Xbox 360 controller. However, chances are that if a player has an Xbox 360 controller, he or she probably has an Xbox 360, which raises the question as to why they would purchase the PC version over the Xbox 360 version.
Visually, Warriors Orochi is lackluster. The environments are bland and seem composed of low resolution models. The player’s character models are the only parts of the game that are visually appealing, and even they aren’t close to what PC gamers would consider impressive or next generation. Even worse is the complete lack of widescreen resolutions. So, even if your PC has the hardware to reach very high resolutions, the highest resolution you’ll be able to achieve is a paltry 1024×768. Moreover, considering Warrior Orochi’s system requirements are so low, most PC users will find themselves with all the settings cranked and still begging for more.
Once in-game, the keyboard controls do the job, although just barely. Having to run the character using just the keyboard makes it difficult to land hits on opponents; it’s easier for the player to constantly use an area of effect attack instead. The camera doesn’t do anything on its own either, forcing the player to control it as well. You can pan the camera manually or just hit a key to reset it behind the player. For instance, if the character turns around on the screen, the camera faces forward, making it impossible to see what you’re attacking. So, for every turning movement the character makes, the player must either reset the camera or just hack-and-slash blindly.
On a positive note, there are a lot of unique characters to play with, each with his or her own unique special moves and attacks. Moreover, the ability to select a team of three warriors and then change among them in mid-battle is a satisfying feature. The ability to increase the abilities of the characters is also a nice touch, but nothing a veteran of the series hasn’t come to expect.
The voice acting stands out as some of the worst ever, but it seems more like comic relief than anything. And even if it isn’t Half-Life 2 quality, it can still be entertaining-like watching a really bad horror movie. The musical scores in the game range from slow-sounding drums to fast-paced techno beats, but neither really set much of a mood. The battlefield sound effects are just enough to get by, but lacking any sort of punch to really immerse the player.
Overall, Warriors Orochi is a simple Playstation 2 port for the PC. It doesn’t stack up against PC games 4-5 years ago in nearly every category. However, it is what many have come to expect from both Dynasty Warriors and Samurai Warriors, which is a hack-and-slash action game that adds a few more elements such as tag teams and blends the two series together, giving the player a hefty arsenal of character to play. Unfortunately, a veteran of the series would have purchased Warriors Orochi last September when it was first released for the consoles, so only newcomers or the hardcore fans would be interested in the PC version. But, in the end, if you’re really looking for that next hack-and-slash experience in Warriors Orochi, grab one of the console versions instead.
RATING OUT OF 5 RATING DESCRIPTION 2.0 Graphics
Dated and low-res with a max resolution of 1024×768. 2.5 Control
No mouse support and keyboard controls are cumbersome. Controllers work as expected. 2.0 Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Sterile music and barely noticeable sound effects are only outmatched by the sheer awful voice acting, which could prove entertaining in a comedic way. 3.5 Play Value
Involves the same hack-and-slash gameplay that veterans love. 2.5 Overall Rating – Average
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.