previews\ Oct 1, 2006 at 8:00 pm

Dynasty Warriors Vol. 2 - PSP - Preview 2

Dynasty Warriors Vol. 2 marks the second entry of KOEI’s historical hack’n slash series on the PSP. For those who have played them, the each entry in the Dynasty Warriors franchise has adhered to a certain formula, pitting your warrior (pulled from actual figures in Chinese history) and the troops they command against tons of enemy soldiers at one time. Dynasty Warriors Vol. 2 doesn’t change this up much, playing a lot like the first PSP Dynasty Warriors game. However, this entry does add a few new elements, like the new stage-branching system and ad-hoc multiplayer, and may keep things interesting for fans of the series.

For those who haven’t played prior Dynasty Warriors games, Vol. 2 on the PSP puts you in control of one of several different warriors pulled from the pages of ancient Chinese history, and has you controlling them through battlefield situations with tons of enemies and foes appearing on the screen at once. Mainly, the individual battles divide into skirmishes with groups of enemies generally headed by some kind of leader unit. Oftentimes, taking out this leader will win the skirmish for you, as opposed to taking out each and every enemy on the field.

The changes made to Dynasty Warriors Vol. 2 manifest themselves in the new stage-branching element in the Musou mode (single-player campaign). The stage branching allows you to complete a stage and then choose between several different options of where you’d like to proceed to next, giving you a little bit more choice.

The new multiplayer elements allow up to four people to play with each other through ad-hoc in a series of different modes. The multiplayer modes are generally limited to competitions, like seeing how can get the most kills within the time limit or accumulate the most points by killing the most officers and so on. There unfortunately isn’t a co-op mode that will let you go through the Musou campaign with a buddy.

Graphically, the game looks pretty good. The draw distance issues from the first PSP title have been cleaned up a lot, meaning you’ll be able to see farther on the playing field without running into nasty fog problems. The character models also look quite good, more detailed than the original game with cleaner animations.

Soundwise, the game has the same kind of rock soundtrack as the rest of the series and standard battle ambience.

Dynasty Warriors Vol. 2 utilizes the tried-and-true formula of the franchise and adds a few new additions to the formula, with the branching stage design and multiplayer elements. Look for it to release later this month.

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