TGS 2016: Hands-On with Perfect World’s ‘Dynasty Warriors Mobile’

In recent years, one of the biggest booths dedicated solely to mobile gaming at the Tokyo Game Show usually belongs to Perfect World. This year was no exception, with the China-based publisher holding a space between Konami and Capcom’s areas on the show floor. To be honest, most of what they were showing were things we’ve seen before: MMORPG Perfect World, the free-to-play Torchlight Mobile, and so on. The majority of their booth space was dedicated to something new, however. A few months ago, we got word that Perfect World had obtained the license to make a game based on Tecmo-Koei’s popular Dynasty Warriors series of beat-em-ups. Well, it’s coming along quickly, because it was playable at TGS 2016.

Early details were a bit vague on Dynasty Warriors Mobile, but it sounded like they were going in a very different direction from traditional entries in the series, and indeed they have. This game is a team-based one-on-one fighting game. Well, most of the time, anyway. There’s a large roster of characters to choose from, each with their own set of basic moves, special attacks, and super moves. The single-player mode has you working through a series of missions. Victory earns you items that you can use to level your character of choice up. Every so often, you’ll get a stage where you can ride on horseback, sweeping away large groups of enemies with ease.

The fighting mechanics are a little more advanced than, say, Injustice or Contest of Champions, but not by a whole lot. Tapping on the left side of the screen dodges backwards, tapping on the right charges forward, holding left guards, and four virtual buttons can be used to strike. When you fill up a super gauge, a Musou button appears that allows you to unleash your strongest attack. It’s fun, juggle-heavy stuff, but like the more simplified fighting games we’ve seen in recent years on mobile, winning seems to be mostly centered around how strong your character is and how well you can play defensively. The horse-riding stages involve tapping to dodge, attack, or perform charged attacks. They’re enjoyable enough as filler.

More interestingly, Dynasty Warriors Mobile includes an actual, honest-to-goodness multiplayer mode. Not you battling the computer controlling another player’s team, but two real humans, facing off to see who’s the better battler. The final version of the game will also include a co-op mode of some kind, apparently, but this wasn’t implemented in the version Perfect World was showing at TGS. The game is, as you would expect from this publisher, free-to-play. There’s a prominent stamina system, premium currency, and I wouldn’t be shocked to see a gatcha system in there for new characters.

Even worse news is that Perfect World couldn’t confirm this would ever see a release in the West.  It’s under consideration, but Perfect World’s history dictates that we don’t have the greatest shot of seeing this come out in most countries. Perhaps the presence of a well-known license will change that, but only time will tell. We’ll be sure to bring you more info on Dynasty Warriors Mobile if we get it, but for now, I hope you can enjoy the video of two of the developers showing off the multiplayer mode.