Preview Hyrule Warriors – First Impressions

Written by Twisted Ideas

hyrule_warriors_nintendo_wii_u_game-wide

I was hanging out at the EB section at FanExpo to say hi to a friend and a brand new demo caught my eye. Hyrule Warriors, the Dynasty Warriors themed Zelda game was playable at their Wii stations. This wasn’t available yesterday and it still isn’t available on the Nintendo eShop either so I was ecstatic.

If you have ever played a Dynasty Warriors game then you know what this game is like. There are hundreds of enemies on the screen and you are an overpowered characters in the cannon fodder. You have to defeat enemies and generals to progress the level and/or capture territories.

The demo featured three playable characters: Link, Zelda and Midna. They all control similarly but visually their fighting styles really stand out. Link uses the Master Sword for huge swings, spins, flips and stabs. Zelda has rapier and attacks with speed and grace and uses magic to dish out pain. Midna in her Twilight Princess appearance uses here twilight powers to summon wolves to ride and attack as well as her magical hair/third hand to manhandle enemies and caps it off with explosive magics.

The format of Hyrule Warriors is the same. You have to complete a series of goals to reach the end of the level which usually results in a fight with a general. The first thing that’s different is that you have Link’s arsenal of items to use. During the demo, you get trapped in a mine after finding bombs, which you throw four or five at a time. You need the bombs to blow up rocks to escape the mine and proceed in the map. Presumable you will obtain more items as the game progresses.

After more fighting the boss fight isn’t a regular strong enemy to beat like other Warriors game but King Dodongo. He’s resistant to physical attacks but if you throw a bomb in his mouth as he charges you will bring him down. He will be more susceptible to physical attacks at that point and after he died the demo ends.

2667759-5570501596-HyrulFinal version looks a lot more yellow.

There are a few combat quirks new to Warriors games. The items are one thing. They have different applications than anything I can think of in the franchise. You never received any item that changed how you interact with the level. Hopefully this will be used to reach areas in previous levels you couldn’t do prior. The bombs could also be upgraded to increase its damage because bombs aren’t too effective to fighting physically.

Next is the magic. The Warriors series has always had special attacks and this is no different. The difference now is that you have a magic meter that you can fill with magic pots. This provide a secondary ability for the character that isn’t strictly always offensive. I believe Midna’s gave her a speed and possibly damage boost.

General and the boss also had a meter that depleted after you’ve exploited their weakness. After it breaks you do a power hit on them. It speeds up battles against stronger enemies.

Then there’s the boss fight. I can’t recall a Warriors game where an enemy boss is just a very strong player character. We saw King Dodongo who you had to kill the same way that you did in Ocarina of Time and the rest of his kin. This is more exciting than let’s say fighting Ghirahim or someone repeatedly throughout the game. You had to fight him in a unique way and this can open up a lot of possibilities.

I am thoroughly impressed with the game. It changes up the Zelda series in a fun and interesting way. Nintendo and Koei Tecmo have infused a lot of traits of the game, like magic pots, rupees, items, bosses, treasure cheats, etc. Set for release in North America on September 26, mark your calendars we finally have a new Wii U game to be excited for again.

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