When a developer has access to numerous titles filled with popular characters, especially those taken from history books and mythology, it only makes sense that a crossover brawler is within reach and over the years Koei Tecmo has taken advantage of this fact with their Warriors Orochi series. Two years ago they released Warriors Orochi 4 and brought Norse mythology into the mix of Dynasty Warriors, Samurai Warriors, plus a few other titles and now they are revisiting that game in the form of Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate. Coming as both an upgrade to the original and its own standalone version, is this enhanced version worth delving into?
It is interesting to note that although Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate does take and expand upon the core story of the game, it is for still very much the same storyline where the Greek god Zeus found himself entertained by the battles that he witnessed throughout the previous game that saw the various warriors team up to defeat Orochi and has crafted a number of special Ouroboros Bracelets that have thrown the two worlds into flux once again.
The bulk of the brand new storyline content in Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate falls at the end of the game’s original story but those who haven’t played through the campaign, or simply want to do so again, will find that the developers have also spent a bit of time trying to flesh out various events that happened in earlier parts of the story as well. This means that a few of the slightly confusing and glossed over events that occurred earlier in the game now have a bit more detail which is a nice touch. Those looking for the new storyline will need to have completed the base game first however, as mentioned before, it takes place where the original storyline came to an end and adds three new chapters to the mix.
This brings the rather lengthy campaign to an even greater level as it brings with it some new mythological beings that players the various warriors will have to contend with. It is also worth noting that, despite some parts of the original campaign being fleshed out and these three chapters continuing to tell a grand perplexing, story that can be rather absurd at times, it still ends up leaving a few more popular characters by the wayside and continues to focus on only a select few fighters. Plus, those who are looking forward to seeing some rather unique fighters added to the game in the form of crossover fighters will be disappointed to see that only three crossover fighters join the roster in Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate in the form of Ryu Hayabusa, Joan of Arc, and Achilles while the other four fighters, bringing the grand total of new warriors up to seven, are gods and deities.
Those looking for a more in-depth gameplay mechanics of Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate will find that it remains almost entirely the same as the original release and can be found here. What Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate does add to the table is a slew of new end-game content that, once again, remains mostly locked until the campaign is completed. This content includes a pair of challenges that allow players to rank themselves against others to see how quickly they can slay 1,000 enemies or break certain items in what is probably the weakest addition and the far stronger added bit of content, the Infinity Mode.
This mode sees the player picking three fighters that they will take as a team, as per usual, into a series of twelve towers that follow the zodiac signs. Each of these towers features five floors that have a special mission that needs to be completed to clear it and these missions run the gambit of slaying a number of enemies, finding items, or slaying a specific foe. Every part of these towers is timed and players will need to take their strongest characters to get through them, especially since the map is only unveiled through exploration instead of entirely at the start. This mode allows players to test their skills as well as power up their fighters to an even greater extent as the experience points obtained from fighting in the tower and the materials dropped can craft the best gear in the game.
That being said, longtime players of these types of games will quickly find that these challenges are a bit too basic at times and even too easy as high powered characters can make short work of even some of the more difficult fights. Of course if players really want to power up their favorite warriors, they now can do so as max level characters can now have their levels returned to 1 where they keep a bit of their previous strength and can be powered up even stronger than before. This process can be done ten times per character and can create a ridiculous squad of fighters should the player choose to really boost their favorites but once again the most challenging of end-game modes isn’t really that difficult.
Visuals & Audio
Considering the original game was released only two years ago on the same platforms as this one, there hasn’t been a noticeable change in any of the returning character models and stages. That isn’t a bad thing as these designs are not only familiar with fans of the series and decently detailed but the blended environments in some stages remain a blast to play through. The new characters that have been added to the game feature some very flashy moves that fit the game’s style perfectly and the additional story content is presented in the same manner as previous story scenes.
The soundtrack features a mix of background music spread across games throughout the series as well as a few standard generic tracks that really don’t stand out too much while the Japanese voice work is fitting, albeit a bit odd at times given the Western gods featured in the game, and this remains true with both newcomers and returning guest characters retaining their Japanese voice actors.
Those who have yet to play the original will find that Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate offers a ton of content to play through in what remains a highly entertaining musou game that sees players slashing through thousands of enemies on a battlefield as a team of three characters taken from different game series and mythology. With an expanded story that takes things to yet another level of ridiculousness and an Infinity Mode that is a bit too easy but a solid enough way to grind for materials and levels, there is plenty to enjoy here. That being said, those who have already found themselves completing the original game may find that this new content isn’t quite worth the upgrade unless they really want to dive into grinding their favorite characters some more.