Thursday, June 20, 2013

Dynasty Warriors 8 is a Thing, I Had No Idea

The other night, one of my friends said "Hey, you getting Dynasty Warriors 8?" and for a moment, I had no idea of what to say.  That I knew -of- a Dynasty Warriors 8 was, of course, reality, but my knowledge of it did not include the fact that it was being localized and had already had a release date (which GameStop pegs as July 16th) and such.  As that knowledge sank in, however, my choice became obvious.  "Is it coming out for PS3?" I asked.  "Yes."  "On-disk?"  "It is."

"Well, yes then."  It really isn't a difficult choice.

I've made it known several times on this blog that I am certainly not at all happy with KOEI, given that they took a game of theirs that I wanted so very badly and did the one thing that guarantees that I just don't fucking get to play it.  Deciding that for one region and one region only, for one platform only, they were not going to release Warriors Orochi 3 physically pissed me off immeasurably, especially for the fact that it was the North American PS3 release which, obviously was what I was going to go with and blah blah blah b-bu-but Sony policy is never going to fucking fly with me.  All it was was a shrewd move to cut costs wherever possible and North America was the only region where the "no english VA, no Disk" excuse was going to fly.  All in all, it probably saved them a bit of money, enough to convince them it was worth it since they continued to do the same thing with all of their releases thereafter, so whatever.

But the issue was always, always, "Goddamnit KOEI, I want to fucking play your games" and not, "Okay, fuck you, KOEI, I'm not going to play your games".  So of course the first game that came out physically, meaning I could play it, I snatched right up in Dynasty Warriors Next.  It's the same reason why I'm going to pre-order the shit out of Dynasty Warriors 8 - I fucking want to play it.  This is why I've always adopted a "Buy what you want" stance, versus the whole "Company has annoyed me, so I'm going to boycott them even though I like what they put out" stance that the internet seems to take every now and then about this and that - usually a game from ActiBlizzard, EA or Ubisoft.  Some might argue that I'm simply buying into bad practices by purchasing DW8, but I can assure you quite plainly that I'm doing just the opposite.

The simple truth is, I cannot download and store Warriors Orochi 3, One Piece Warriors or any other game that KOEI has only released digitally, so thus, I don't want them.  I want to play them, of course, but I don't want them as a product because I cannot use them.  So I don't buy them.  Buying those would be buying into bad practices since I'm simply encouraging them to continue beating me over the head with games that I'll buy without the ability to play.  Buying Dynasty Warriors Next on a gamestick sends two very clear messages - I want Dynasty Warriors on Physical Media and I want Dynasty Warriors on Vita - where buying Dynasty Warriors 8 on blu-ray for PS3 sends exactly the same message.  I want the fucking game, here is how I want it, I'm proving it by throwing money in your face.  It's that easy.

I suppose I should state somewhere in this post why exactly I specifically want Dynasty Warriors 8 other than "it's a Dynasty Warriors game I can fucking buy and play how goddamn revolutionary", because there definitely -is- a reason!  Up to Dynasty Warriors 7 each iteration of the franchise tried to do something, anything to really sort of make it 'click' with not only us, but the developers as well, yet each try at that found itself lacking.  4 and 6 are among the most divisive since they do things very, very differently (4's weapon upgrade system rather than acquiring weapons, and 6's much-reviled Renbu system which I thought was actually okay) but every game was very, very different than the last.  When 7 came out to prove itself different than every game before it, it also did something else - it proved itself to be awesome.

Dynasty Warriors 7 was the first game in the main series that introduced a system wherein you could carry two weapons into the field and switch between them at will, oftentimes as part of your combo, thereby extending it into use of your next weapon.  Needless to say, it could get pretty friggin' sweet to watch with some of the possible combos, but also served a utilitarian purpose in allowing characters whose main weapon was something you didn't mesh with to still be useful by equipping a weapon that you -were- familiar with.  Not only that, but it was the first game to take the term 'cinematic' and mean it which really knocked it out of the park for a few things.  Dynamic mission switching (in which you finished a mission and were then instantly lead into another one, oftentimes as a different character) and the like were rife in the rather intricate Story Mode of the game and made that one of the best it's been.

The thing about Dynasty Warriors 8?  KOEI basically went and looked and said "Well, 7 is awesome, so let's just make that better instead of revamping it again".  Which is all amounts of "yessssss" that I can physically give.  Dynasty Warriors 7 was indeed awesome and managed to butt in to the conversation whenever "Best Dynasty Warriors game" was being discussed and the merits of 3 and 5 were being touted because 2, 4 and 6 'sucked'.  Which....doesn't mean a whole lot to folks who aren't series fans, I imagine, but it's a -thing-, I assure you.  So DW8 as an improved DW7 basically means all the awesome weapon systems, the cinematic feel, the improvements made since in iterative titles of DW7 and additional cool things like more characters on top of the already-impressive roster and, y'know, Free Mode, which was completely absent from 7.  Free Mode, obviously, lets you take a battle in particular and insert yourself on whichever side you like as whoever you want to be.  So if you want to play a guy from Shu on Wei's side fighting -against- Shu?  Go for it.  It sounds like a little thing, but it adds so much replayability to the game and the series -thrives- on that.  So DW8 is definitely something to be excited about from my perspective.

I'm giddy about a KOEI game again, what sorcery is this because it is the best kind of sorcery

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