Warriors Orochi 2

Can't Keep A Bad Man Down

Okay, fine, a Demon Lord. Yes, Orochi is back in his second Warriors mash-up.
Author: Sam Bishop
Published: August 8, 2008
Crossover games are all the rage in Japan these days, most of them relegated to funky cross-branded role-playing affairs that just plain confuse the hell out of us. But see, that just proves how down with the trends KOEI is, and in particular the Omega Force development studios. The house that Dynasty Warriors built took their bread and butter, mixed it with their Samurai Warriors spin-offs and like peanut butter and chocolate (or, uh, milk and dark chocolate, we suppose), mixed the two with the story of the Demon Lord Orochi and his plan to pull characters from both games into a new world.


Sweeet.

Of course, any Demon Lord who thinks it's a good idea to combine both evil and good characters from multiple worlds probably flunked out of Demon U, and not surprisingly his plan to rule over everything and generally just be a really bad guy didn't go so well. In fact, dude straight up got his ass whupped. Whoops. Of course, this is a Demon Lord we're talking about, and they tend not to want to stay un-dominating for too long, so faster than you can say "time for the inevitable sequel," Omega Force whipped up a second Warriors Orochi adventure.

Like all the Warriors games, Warriors Orochi 2 isn't a massive leap forward for the series. The roster has grown considerable, bringing in characters from the expansions to juice up the full complement to a whopping 90 characters. Stuff like the Story Mode returns (rife with plenty of cutscenes depicting dudes spouting one-liners and then clashing dramatically), but it's joined by a couple of new additions, including Survival Mode and Dream Mode, which throws you into a specific scenario with a specific team of warriors. Of the new modes we played, Dream Mode was easily the hardest, but then we were working with base-level characters.

The other, and perhaps biggest new addition to the series, though, is actually a couple of different offerings. There are co-op options, of course, but the new Versus menu offers a handful of different ways to play with friends, including a new one-on-one mode straight out of the first Dynasty Warriors, but augmented to include all of the gameplay bits and pieces since the first game came out. For those that just thought the series had always been a hack-'n-slash affair, the arena-based combat will definitely be something different, and for those that do remember the old days, all the updated move sets, massive roster of characters and little things like being able to use special attacks or unleash a proper Musou attack in the old mode is going to be more than enough to make you all giddy. Well, that is if you still get giddy.

We, fortunately, do, and though Warriors Orochi 2 wasn't all that different from the first one, the ability to take three characters from two different series into battle and swap freely between them (or even chain together their Musou attacks or do a three-person mega-Musou attack) was more than enough reason to get us interested in the series again. In fact, even with all the fancy-pants new stuff that the PS2 port of Dynasty Warriors 6 offered, we still felt that old familiar itch to jump back in with Warriors Orochi 2 more. Fortunately for us, we managed to snag a near-final build of the game, and we'll be bringing you more impressions soon.

In the mean time, enjoy about a billion new screens and some hot, hot trailer action.