The Warriors Orochi series makes its debute on PS Vita with Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate! The game borrows characters from other Koei Tecmo titles we’ve already seen on the PS Vita, from Dynasty Warriors to Ninja Gaiden, so lets find out if this is a welcome reunion.
Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate is an enhanced version of Warriors Orochi 3, which released on PS3 in 2011. The story has been extended and new characters are added. The Ultimate version includes the entire content from Warriors Orochi 3 and Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper, the latter was released on the Wii U. Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate offers not only an extended story and new characters but also new modes, new actions and new collection elements.
Warriors Orochi tells the story of a demon God named Orochi who has created rifts in time and space to draw the greatest heroes of all time in to a parallel dimension. Here he has them fighting eachother for his own amusement. Orochi is caught by surprise when the heroes band together and instead of fighting eachother they’re on a quest to defeat Orochi.
Warriors Orochi 3 continues where Warriors Orochi 2 left off and follows the heroes of the Three Kingdoms era, rebuilding their lives in a twisted parallel world after Orochi’s defeat. This is where they encounter a new threat, the eight-headed Hydra. The Hydra kills off most warriors and only three of them are left; Ma Chao, Sima Zhao and Hanbei Takenaka. The three warriors are about to be slaughtered by the Hydra when Moon Princess Kaguya appears, she claims to be sent from a mystic world to help the warriors survive. Using her time travel skills it’s up to you to help the warriors save their comrades and ultimately take down the Hydra.
The game starts with a huge battle against the Hydra. This battle can’t be won and is here to introduce you with the story and the three remaining warriors. You’re being helped by Moon Princess Kaguya, she is able to travel through time and introduces you to this fact by sending you to battles before all got out of hand. The story mode now starts for real and you’ll find yourself going back and forth in time to save and resurrect fallen warriors.
You’re free to play the different scenarios in any order you like, some scenarios will open a redux scenario upon completion. The redux scenarios take you back in time to alter the path or to rescue struggling or fallen warriors. You’re also free to create the team used in battle. Each character has its own strengths and weaknesses so it’s vital to choose wisely as this can change everything.
The battles are fast-paced and the maps are big enough to get the feeling of a huge battlefield while small enough to not become overwhelmed. The ability to use a team of your choice and what battle to play is a great way to extend gameplay and you’ll find yourself going back and forth between battles to get the most out of Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate. The story mode is entertaining enough to keep playing for around forty hours, the time it roughly takes to complete the 178 different scenarios.
This mode allows you to play scenarios you have cleared in Story Mode with a character of your choice. It’s possible to play these scenarios alone or go online, both ad hoc and online via PSN are supported. It’s a fun way to relive scenarios and the option to play with friends online is a great addition. This works great and I haven’t encountered any problems with it.
Duel Mode is somewhat different from the other modes, here you can play 3 versus 3 with Skill Cards to enhance your team. These Skill Cards are unlocked by clearing missions and scenarios in Story Mode and can give you a boost in stats or strenghten your weapons. There are also cards to annoy your opponent, reducing stats is a good example of this. This mode can be played offline against the AI or online against other players. There is also the possibility to play a Survival Mode within this mode. Each new battle gets harder and it’s save to wait with this mode until you have unlocked a good amount of strong cards.
Gauntlet Mode (also known as Unlimited Mode)
This mode lets you guide a party of five heroes through different, ever changing stages. These stages are covered by Miasma, an evil force that influences the enemies, the thicker the Miasma the harder it is to beat them. Your goal is to activate so called Dragon Portals. These portals open an escape point used to clear the stage. Strategy is important in this mode, the formation used in battles changes your party’s abilities and actions. It’s a great mode to play, the different kind of gameplay is a great way to escape the story mode but keep playing Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate.
This mode allows players to edit scenarios they have cleared in the story mode. It’s possible to change lines, officers and the music. It’s also possible to add new elements, like changing the time limit or change all enemies to a specific role. The created scenarios can be shared online as well, prepare for an unlimited amount of scenarios.
Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate looks very good on the PS Vita screen. I haven’t encountered any significant framedrops while playing the game. I have to admit, this surprised me as there is a lot happening on the screen. Sometimes enemies appear a little late compared to where they should be when looking at the map. This is a minor inconvenience because it does make you wonder where to go or if you missed something. The music and sound effects are very nice, it doesn’t get boring and it gives the game the extra touch it needs to make everything more intense.
Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate is a great game to add to your PS Vita collection. It features a story mode of around 40 hours with 178 scenarios, a total of 145 different playable characters and environments from series like Atelier, Dead Or Alive, Ninja Gaiden and Dynasty Warriors plus various modes to keep you busy. The few minor graphical errors aside, this game is great!