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It’s always a little disappointing when you see a developer go through a few years of doing some top-notch games, and then see them stumble a bit. Not that today’s review of Arslan: The Warriors of Legend is bad or anything, but since Omega Force just put out Hyrule Warriors and Dragon Quest Heroes, Arslan is just not as good as those two previous games. Heck, those two previous games convinced me to start paying more attention to what Omega Force was doing with licenses not of their own, and to see how they have changed up the Dynasty Warriors-style of game design up for said properties. I was interested in Arslan when I first found out about it, and how it was based on a manga series that has a current anime series going on with character designs by the same person who did the work of Fullmetal Alchemist, Hiromu Arakawa. Well, let’s see why this is still a good game, but not as good as the rest.
The game’s story is a summary of season one of the anime that is basically an anime version of the Persian epic, Amir Arsalan. It’s a huge war story about countries either supporting the main heroes or going against them for political and religious purposes. I might be simplifying it, but the story in this game is cramming an entire season into a game that takes at least six hours to beat. It gets the important story beats, and leaves in enough story to make the characters interesting. It gets its job done, but really, you don’t play this game for the story.
If you have never played a single game made by Omega Force, then I recommend you pick up Hyrule Warriors or Dragon Quest Heroes, but I must describe the game I’m talking about. It’s a combat-heavy action game. The levels themselves are pretty linear, with very few alternate routes or anything that interesting in the overall level design. You play as the individual lead characters that the anime follows, and beat the tar out of hordes of enemies with easy-to-complex attacks. This game only has a few unique elements that differentiate itself from most Omega Force games. One of the unique elements in this game is the army-charging attacks that you can pull off to get to other parts of the level. This is where you go toward a swirling blue vortex, and then charge with a massive army to take down gates or walls that are in your way. Another element that stands out is that a lot of the playable characters wield different weapons that include a sword, spear, and a bow. Just like in most Dynasty Warriors-style games, they can also pull off special moves that wipe out huge chunks of enemies. There is nothing too different about this game, and it is definitely not one of the longer games in the sub-series of games. You can pretty much do everything with this game in about a day if you just push through it. You can get some of the usual extras, like being able to replay levels as different characters, but you won’t be getting much out of this game.
Graphically, I love the look of the anime art style. It looks great since it has a few of those touches that I adored about the art used in Fullmetal Alchemist. It has a style, in terms of the human designs, to have what current anime uses, but its own special details that stand out. I don’t remember too much of the music, sadly. It just sounded alright, but nothing I was humming to after playing the game.
Sadly, there is a reason why I’m disappointed with Arslan. The game has no real reason to be played again unless you have a friend. There is no replay value connected to this game. It’s fun, but repetitive, since there isn’t that much variety in terms of the missions. It also doesn’t have that spark, like Hyrule Warriors and Dragon Quest Heroes have, where Heroes had the tower defense mechanics and Hyrule Warriors combined Zelda mechanics into one game. I did say Arslan has unique elements, but they are elements you can find in other games, like Bladestorm. I also found the ending to be underwhelming, since it’s going off a current storyline and they couldn’t just end the story with the villain getting killed.
I do like Arslan: The Warriors of Legend, but again, I’m underwhelmed. By no means is it a horrible game or anything like that, but definitely not something I would be going out and purchasing right away. I would probably recommend picking this game up if you see it for $15, but definitely get the other two Omega Force games I mentioned above before putting your money down on Arslan. Too bad this game left a lot to be desired, but still, you can do a lot worse in terms of Omega Force-developed games.
This game gets a 6 out of 10