Samurai Warriors Chronicles
Samurai Warriors Chronicles review: In our opinion this is the standout title in the Nintendo 3DS launch line-up
- Looks and plays great in 3D, offers up a few new twists to the formula to make the game even more hectic, StreetPass feature is really good fun
- It's going to be hard to find other people with copies of this game to StreetPass
If you haven't given a Warriors game a chance, and have a shiny new Nintendo 3DS, then please do give Samurai Warriors Chronicles a whirl. It'll surprise and delight you.
Price$ 79.95 (AUD)
Forget Nintendogs, forget Pilot Wings. The Nintendo 3DS launch title that you really should be buying into is Samurai Warriors Chronicles. It's a spectacular effort that makes brilliant use of all of the 3DS' unique features, and brings them together into a mature and self-assured title from a company now very comfortable with its key franchise.
On the surface, Chronicles looks a lot like Samurai Warriors 3 on the Nintendo Wii — using the same character models, level assets and soundtrack. In 3D, though, it's much more impressive. When action is literally coming at you from all angles, you can't help but be immersed within a battle. Though the 3DS is not able to handle hordes of enemies of quite the same size as the Wii, you'll still be slaughtering at a comfortable clip.
The cutscenes make superb use of the 3D for cosmetic effect. It's clear that Tecmo Koei put a great deal of effort in understanding the differences between 2D and 3D imagery, and has cleverly constructed the cut scenes to give us something not possible on conventional technology. In battle, the 3D is not just a cosmetic effect. Being able to gauge distances more easily helps when judging the timing and movement of attacks. It's a subtle difference, but it helps prevent attacking thin air because of assuming the enemy is closer than they really are.
Digging further into the game, Chronicles is a very different title to Samurai Warriors 3. In the Wii game, Tecmo Koei constructed a story for each and every playable character — there were more than 30 stories, of four to five missions each. This time around, the story is told from the perspective of just one character — one you make yourself, who travels through the Sengoku period of medieval Japan, participating in all the major conflicts.
It feels a little contrived at times to have this 'nameless' character pop up at each and every battle — and on random sides to boot — but at the same time, it provides a historical insight into the era that previous games in the series have struggled with. For the first time, even people who haven't read into Japanese history will get a detailed snapshot of the battles, their importance, and the people who fought them. It's cohesive, understandable, and has the bonus side effect of providing a 'campaign' that lasts for many, many hours.
That doesn't mean you'll be stuck controlling the one hero, though. On each battlefield, you'll take control of up to three historical characters, in addition to the one you created. They'll be placed around the battlefield, and you're free to swap between them.
You'll need to do it a lot, too, because the mission structure will have you managing objectives from one side of the battlefield to the other, usually simultaneously. On the harder levels in the later stages of the game, it's a hectic system indeed, and requires many of the same 'on the fly' strategic decisions that would be applicable in a real battlefield.
This system also makes up for the somewhat limited action buttons. Warriors veterans will be familiar with the two-button attack style that is the default for the series, but when you're going to be handling the different combos of four different characters simultaneously, you won't have the time to stop and think about whether these games really do quality for "button masher" status or not.
Beyond the campaign, there's the ability to tackle any map you've already completed, with any combination of heroes you'd like — so the "dream team" can really happen in this game. But more addictive is the StreetPass mode. Here, you'll select a combination of four heroes, and one of four battle formations. Then, when you pass someone else with a copy of the game, data will be exchanged and you'll find out whether your team building skills are up to scratch.
Unfortunately, wandering past other people in Australia with copies of this game might prove difficult. Despite being the highest quality game in the 3DS launch line-up, Samurai Warriors Chronicles is destined to be forgotten and undeservedly dismissed.
Become a fan of GoodGearGuide on Facebook
Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @GoodGearGuide
Stay up to date with the latest reviews. Sign up to GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Smart LED Bulb LB130
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® Portable SSD
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Acer Swift 7
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Surface Pro 4
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- You can download Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes for iOS and Android today
- Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes looks sharp, but will it survive the freemium transition?
- Nintendo's bringing Super Mario Run to Android in March, but Fire Emblem's coming first
- The Switch is a mix of Nintendo's past consoles
- Dead Rising 4 impressions: 'Tis the season to BBQ zombies with your flaming sword
PCW Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
- Horizon Zero Dawn review
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Japan's pop culture, anime-friendly, J-Pop shrine, Kanda Myojin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Technical ArchitectQLD
- FTDynamics AX Functional ConsultantACT
- FTPMO Specialist - PermanentACT
- FTNodeJS DeveloperNSW
- CCMDM Consultant/DesignerVIC
- TPSolution Architect - Real-Time Tracking SystemVIC
- TPSenior Test AnalystQLD
- FTSystem EngineerVIC
- FTSenior Java DeveloperNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- TPAgile CoachNSW
- TPChange AnalystQLD
- CCSalesforce DeveloperNSW
- CCJunior Data ArchitectACT
- TPGIS Developer - 6 month ContractQLD
- CCNetwork Engineer/ Network AdministratorQLD
- CCUnix AdministratorNSW
- FTLevel 3 EngineerNSW
- CC.Net Developer x 2QLD
- CCSAP Consultant - SAP Native HANA to DesignWA
- TPBusiness Process Analyst (Newcaslte Based)NSW
- TPBusiness Analyst - PeopleSoft HR/Payroll ProjectVIC
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerACT
- CCPMO Analyst - Financial ServicesNSW
- TPOrganisational Change Manager - ICT Services TransformationQLD