Dynasty Warriors, Warriors Orochi and Samurai Warriors, all of these series’ equate to one thing – mindlessly slashing your way through up to thousands of different enemies on screen at once whilst attempting to complete many of the objectives that the game throws at you.

While these games don’t usually offer much in the way of a story, Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 attempts to mix things up a bit in the hopes of giving players a true and reachable goal to attempt, the result however, is not good.

The game starts off with something of a first for the Samurai Warriors series, a character creation screen. For the first time the game allows players to craft a more personal story around the games world, and doing so with quite a good and concise character creation toolkit really set me in good stead with the game.

Once your character is created the game sets up it’s story, you start off as a mere soldier in the army of noted Japanese General, Nobunaga Oda, and over the course of the 60+ year time span, you work your way up the ranks to become a higher ranking member of his army – speaking to many different notable figures from Japanese history. The way the story builds up is fun and interesting and is well written.

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Then it happened, after initially impressing, the game then became what it was destined to be – another repetitive hack and slash game. I found that all it really consisted of was pressing Square constantly to batter your way through wave after wave of enemies whilst characters give you random objectives to tackle.

The controls here are simple, Square (which is the button you’ll use most) is your basic attack, Triangle is your strong attack, whereas Circle activates your Musou gage which unleashes a strong attack which can take out a significant amount of enemies at once and the X button is jump – which I managed to strategically incorporate into my playing style when I found myself surrounded by perhaps too many enemies.

Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 doesn’t expect you to complete every objective that it has to offer – in fact this is where the game gains it’s replayability factor. It’s highly unlikely that you’ll find all the objectives in a mission on your first go, in fact missions trigger under certain conditions, such as characters dying, enemy Generals escaping or you taking long enough in the level for them to appear.

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Which brings up the next interesting idea that Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 brings to shake up the foundations of the series – character swapping. This happens when you have more than one playable General selected in a stage and by simply tapping the character on the bottom left-hand corner of the screen, you’ll jump to them wherever they may be on the map and take control over their part of the battle.

In between battles, cutscenes unlock for players to watch, and these are interactive in a way that allows players to respond to whatever situation the cutscene presents. These cutscenes allow for your created character to bond with the games main cast and form relationships, which can in certain cases, turn the tide of battle when needed.

One of the worst things about this game is that as you continue to slaughter masses upon masses of enemies, you soon forget that there is a story to be told. It’s hard to keep track of what’s going on, and in some cases, you can actually downright skip any story elements that the game has to offer.

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And that’s basically it in regards to the gameplay, it never changes throughout it’s 10-15 hour story campaign, which is possibly one of the biggest drags I’ve ever experienced in a Vita game. After countless missions I was sat thinking to myself, surely this one is the final mission, surely it’s finally over after this one, but nope, it kept giving me more and more to do.

Graphically the game looks OK, there’s nothing special in the way of graphics here, but it doesn’t look terrible – my main problem here though is that the game suffers from some awful slow down when there are quite a lot of enemies on the screen. In my opinion, for a series such as this where they have been making these games for quite a while, I felt that this was inexcusable.

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The game’s soundtrack is one of the plus points of Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3, using classic Japanese instruments to give an authentic sound to the events of the game, as well as using faster rock music in the more action orientated parts of the stages – such as defeating the boss in the levels.

Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 really had everything it needed to shake up the foundation of the Warriors (or Musou) series of games, but it falls flat on it’s face by including a story that is uninteresting and can be easily ignored. Fans of the series may find something enjoyable within all of it’s nonsense but newcomers should consider sitting this one out.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I need a new Square button for my Vita.

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Presentation
Gameplay
Lasting Appeal
Execution
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Vita enthusiast and once declared as 'Champion of the Vita', Liam's love for Sony's handheld know's no bounds. He's happy playing most Vita titles and most recently found himself enjoying indie titles, but will totally give you a good run for your money in any beat-em-up
  • Cousin Jeffrey

    It’s digital only so I was ever going to buy it anyway.

  • Slizarus

    As a fan of Warriors games, this sounds great, I don’t know why it kills the average reviewer, I would expect to give this around a 3.5-4 if I get my hands on it, I love the idea of character swapping, that might make things more fun 🙂 I don’t know how people expect the Warriors and EDFs of the world to evolve in some sense, what more are you supposed to do? *shrug* Oh well, Thanks for giving your honest opinion Liam 🙂

  • Lester Paredes

    So, it’s a warriors game. It plays like all the others. Lol. It does require a peculiar itch, and not everyone has that particular want. I understand. I never expect these to get reviewed well. And I do think that too many Warriors games have been released.

  • Rodolfo Ferreira

    Disappointed. I think this anime’s formula is exhausted, so overused over and over again, I don’t think it’s worth making a sequel for a game that is pretty much the same thing despite which version you’re playing. Another Fifa Football-12-13-14-15 like scenario. Something tells me this is a tendency for Vita games – whether they’re made in Japan or outside.

  • “While these games don’t usually offer much in the way of a story”

    Uh. What?

    Sengoku history isn’t much of a story now? Or what you actually mean is you don’t understand it or know enough about it to read between the lines and interpret what’s going on?

    Go do some reading. Buy Taiko, which is like 1,000 pages long and about just one of the personalities of Sengoku-era history (Hideyoshi Toyotomi). Read Romance of the Three Kingdoms, which is what Dynasty Warriors is based on.

    You’ll find that the games are truncated versions of these stories and those battles, and then you’ll realise that running in the background of a Warriors game is decades of years worth of history.

    Then you might think twice about making such a reductionist statement as “While these games don’t usually offer much in the way of a story.” The Warriors games have more narrative going on than anything else out there.

    • Luis Aguilar

      Yeah, its clear that this wasn’t the game for Liam, the mayority of the fun in the Warriors games come from he history aspects, if you dont give a crap about it then its like playing Metal Gear shouting “come on! I dont give a damm about what you are saying! Give me more guys to shoot!”

      And this game? This is a chronicles game! This is a game for the fans of the warrios games! The fans have been asking for this for years! If you dont like Warriors game then why would you buy this?

      • bigcuckmales

        yeah brah totally all those giant enemy crabs