I wouldn’t blame you if you lost track of all the Warriors titles. In fact, so have I but here we are reading the review to Samurai Warriors 4 Empires. The major difference between the standard Warriors games and the Warriors Empires games is a layer of strategy and planning that has been streamlined for more to enjoy but in the process may have reduced the fun for those that are looking for strategy.
The Warriors baseline series has always been about reckless abandon as you charge headfirst in literally hundreds of enemies. You see counters go up like your combo and K.O. count and honestly its all just dumb fun that feels so good that it’s incredibly hard to put down. This is still present in Samurai Warriors 4 Empires but something else included takes center stage. If you might not be aware, Samurai Warriors 4 Empires features a lot of menus and organising.
The aim of the game is to build your clan and claim land. You do this by invading opposing clans and claiming the map. The claiming part if very much familiar to those of the genre but the it before and after is what sets this series apart. You must assign roles, build resources and worry about a fair few numbers including your fame.
This process has been streamlined over previous Empires games and unfortunately it falls between being digestible for non-fans and too simplified for core fans. If you’re not a fan of the strategy aspect then you’re more than likely better off just playing the core games. If you like the strategy element then you more than likely be disappointed by a more simplified approach to this system. This isn’t to say that the planning and management is worthless but after some time, you start to fall into a routine to maintain your clan and keep everything going in the right direction.
Despite that, there is and satisfying sensation watching your flag move across the land, claiming plot after plot and obtaining new officers. When you successfully complete an invasion, you have the option to do what you want with the captured officers. You can be ruthless and kill them all but that might lead to a tougher time having enough people to keep the conquered lands in your control. Feeling a sense of progression in power while managing to keep things positive is rewarding.
Visually, the game looks pretty good. There is a surprising amount of detail in your character’s clothes and face. The rest all looks pretty decent but with all games of this ilk, fidelity is usually sacrificed for a better gameplay experience.
Samurai Warriors 4 Empires fts in a weird position between it’s refined and simplified strategy and hack n’ slash gameplay. The strategy element has been simplified to an extent that that it might frustrate fans of the Empires series and the inclusion of it might question fans of the gameplay to actually play this title when the core games feature more of what they want. Still, despite all of this it’s still a fun game with plenty to do.