Dynasty Warriors 4: Information

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Dynasty Warriors 4 (Shin Sangoku Musou 3) – Game Information and FAQ

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Presenting the Dynasty Warriors 4 game information guide. Here we will collect release information and features as well as answer any frequently asked questions that we come across regularly. We will update this page as new information is released. Hat tip: Spookybanana for providing a large amount of the information on which this document is based, thank you very much.

Release Information from Koei US

Dynasty Warriors 4 takes battlefield action to the next level, allowing players to experience the thrill of taking on multiple opponents at once and fighting against impossible odds. A host of new features add greater depth to the gameplay, as well as more insight into the characters and turbulent events of the Three Kingdoms era. The concepts of Honor and Loyalty in the face of adversity serve as the main theme for the game. The obligations of generals to their Lords and Allies guide the paths of these warriors as the fight to unify a divided empire.

Dynasty Warriors 4 greatest achievement is the addition of large-scale siege engines including catapults, battering rams, and bridge layers. The new weapons function in real-time and will be essential to victory. Like the horse and elephant troops that were introduced in Dynasty Warriors 3, the inclusion of siege engines adds a new level of excitement to the tactical action series.

Although based on Luo Guanzhong’s novel, Romance of the Three Kingdoms, the latest installment of the series takes a more open-ended approach to the narrative in order to create a more involving atmosphere for the gamer. Two new play modes including Campaign mode and Kingdom play are introduced. In Campaign mode, players can select a character, and then select a strategic campaign. Previous games in the series required the player to progress through each of the game’s stages in a linear path. With Kingdom play, players select one of the three kingdoms, Wu, Shu or Wei. As the game progresses through the storyline, players will be able to use any of the characters from that kingdom. Together, these two modes combine to provide even more freedom and replay value over the progressive single story paths of previous Dynasty Warriors™ games. Additionally, there will be even more stages than Dynasty Warriors 3.

No two games will be the same. Using a multiple scenario system, new victory conditions will emerge and different events will occur as each battle unfolds. New AI allows enemy and allied units to react to actual battlefield conditions, rather than to a set pattern. With constantly changing scenarios and new, more reactive enemy and ally AI, Dynasty Warriors 4 presents the most realistic battlefield action yet.

Game Information and FAQ

Information below is divided into separate sections focusing on different aspects of Dynasty Warriors 4. If you have a question make sure it isn’t answered here before contacting me by email. If your question is in regards to a feature, and it isn’t listed below, it is a safe bet that we don’t know. If you have new facts to contribute, no matter how small, please contact us with it and the source (so we can verify).

General Information

  • Dynasty Warriors 4 will be released for the Sony PlayStation 2.
  • Release information for other consoles is not available at this time.
  • The Japanese release date for Shin Sangoku Musou 3 (Dynasty Warriors 4 in the United States) is Feb. 27, 2003.
  • The expected release date in the US is somewhere in the week of Mar. 25, 2003.
  • Release dates to other countries (e.g. PAL/European) have not been announced.
  • Featured difficulty levels include Easy, Normal, Hard, and Hero (it is possible that Hero mode may be removed from American and European releases).

Characters

  • Dynasty Warriors 4 will feature three new characters: Cao Ren (Wei), Zhou Tai (Wu), and Yeu Ying (Zhuge Liang’s wife, Shu). Cao Pi was rumored to be a fourth character, but the rumors are incorrect.
  • Officers available at the start of the game include the following: Xiahou Dun, Xiahou Yuan, and Cao Cao for Wei; Liu Bei, Zhang Fei, and Guan Yu for Shu; and Sun Shang Xiang, Huang Gai, and Sun Jian for Wu. Initially, you cannot select the unaligned officer campaigns.
  • Fu Xi and Nu Wa will not be in Dynasty Warriors 4 (they have nothing to do with the Three Kingdoms era).
  • All playable officers now feature redesigned character models.
  • Character Edit Mode allows players to make their own generals using various parts (head, chest, arms and legs, and waist), and as you play the game more parts will become available for each category (up to around 16 male and 15 female options). You may create up to four original officers. There are five different “motion” (weapons, determines ability based off officer sex) types for male officers, and another five for female officers.
  • Each officer starts with only one costume, but as your officer increases in rank up to six different costumes will be available. Furthermore, additional costumes features new appearances (they are not just color variations).
  • Officers are now more difficult to build up because powerups aren’t as common as they once were.

New Siege Engine

New Musou Modes

  • Campaign Mode, where “players can select a character, and then select a strategic campaign.”
  • Kingdom Mode, players select one of the three kingdoms, Wu, Shu or Wei, and are able to switch characters of that same kingdom during play as desired.

Changes to the AI

  • The troop and officer AI has been improved to adjust to battle conditions, not just a set pattern. Troops will be more aggressive, they will cooperate to a certain degree, and they will be more likely to follow through with combos and charge attacks. If you encounter them in an isolated area, they may attempt to rejoin their allies to fight you on better terms. Those are some examples of changes.

Game Music

  • Music in Dynasty Warriors 4 incorporates “modern music with classical Asian instruments and styles.” This may come as a significant change to many fans of the series, but it may also grow on you after playing for a while.

Stages

  • Environments are more interactive (more items to destroy, and more terrain relavence).
  • There are somewhere around 17 stages, broken up into 50 zones.
  • The stages are exceptionally large, thus the addition of zones. When you reach a certain stage, depending on the storyline and your actions in previous stages, you may find yourself fighting in a different zone of the next area.
  • There are now “Gaiden” stages. They are basically secret stages (zones) that you can reach only by meeting certain requirements in the storyline as you go through (e.g. Guan Yu’s Escape, Rescue the Qiao Sisters, and Return of the Yellow Turbans).

Bodyguards

  • The maximum number of guards is 8
  • The combo point system found in ssm2 moushouden/DW3 Xtreme Legends will not be included.
  • The elements of customizing your bodyguards are to be similar to those of DW3:Xtreme Legends.
  • You may have up to four bodyguard teams.
  • Initially, only male and female bodyguard types are available. Additional types (unlocked through gameplay) include Nanman male and female and Yellow Turban male.
  • You man only use one bodyguard type for any given bodyguard team.
  • Bodyguards are now more helpful and efficient.

Mounts

  • Elephants are now available on all stages (not just the Nanman Campaign).
  • You can now dismount from horses while you are running.
  • You may now pick up items from horseback.
  • In some cases high-ranking officers will start battles with a mount.
  • You can mount horses regardless of your rank (it is unknown of uniques like the Red Hare are an exception).

Weapons and Items

  • There is a new weapon development system. Through experience and events you can increase the level of your weapon, changing the weapon graphic and allowing additional hits (e.g. Liu Bei’s weapon initially has a maximum combo of three, but by the time you reach level four you can hit five times. There are 10 levels.
  • You can reach level 9 through weapon experience, but level 10 weapons can only be unlocked by meeting certain requirements (as was the case with Dynasty Warriors 3).
  • Unique weapon models are acquired at levels one, four, seven, and ten.
  • Elements are now attached to weapons using “Elemental Orbs”.
  • Rank impacts the total amount of items you can equip.
  • Depending on the type of officer you play, the number of items you can equip will be impacted. For example, strategists (e.g. Zhuge Liang, Sima Yi, Pang Tong) can equip six, fighters (e.g. Lu Xun, Xu Huang, Jiang Wei (can equip five), and warriors (e.g. Zhao Yun, Guan Yu, and Xiahou Dun) may equip four.

Combat Features

  • Max combo from any given weapon is still 6 (and requires a higher weapon level).
  • It is now possible to throw enemy troops with your weapon.
  • Due to opinions from fans that that did not like to be hindered by normal soldiers during fights with other famous generals, the producers decided to add in a "ikkiuchi" (1 vs. 1 personal combat) during battles.
  • These personal combats will take place in special areas away from the battle, but controls and viewpoint will be the same as the normal game. These battles will have a 45 second time limit. You can accept personal combats by pressing ‘O’, but not all officers can duel.
  • Upon defeating an enemy general during a personal combat, or when you turn down the request for personal combat, troop morale will be impacted.
  • Some characters now have special bow attacks.
  • The T [Triangle] charge has been given new variety; examples include Zhang Fei throwing the enemy, Zhao Yun doing a dash attack, Zhuge Liang throwing a projectile dependent on rank and items equipped, Huang Zhong shoots a large quantity of arrows, etc.
  • Pressing T [Triangle] while in the air will now result in a charge attack that brings your officer directly down into combat.
  • Counterattacking is now possible without taking damage.
  • You can taunt enemies now, causing them to pause or back up by pushing R3.
  • There is no longer a pause before Musou attacks are used, you just go straight into the attack as soon as you push the button.
  • True Musou attacks no longer hold the flame element, but they are more effective in terms of range and now have more attacks. Sometimes you can be hurt in the process of this attack (a new twist on Musou attacks).
  • The team Musou attacks are still present, and you can also do them with allied officers.
  • The various types of soldiers now move much faster, allowing them to keep up with many generals.
  • Guard Captains no longer drop defense powerups, just meat buns.
  • Archers fire slower and also do less damage.

Gameplay Details

  • The Nanman campaign is no longer a single stage, it is now three separate campaigns.

Bugs and Glitches

  • The officer/gate captain vanishing problem appears to have been resolved, in fact you can now see more troops on screen at once than before, but apparently the occasional slowdown is still present.

Feedback

  • Many people are not very happy with the game music, but this may just be because it is something a little different from the norm. You may find you like the music after playing for a while.
  • Many people feel that the jump attacks, in most cases, aren’t very useful. Lower damage than expected is reported, and you can also be knocked out of them.
  • I have also heard from many that the taunts (R3) are not very effective, and they leave you open to attacks.
  • The improved AI, in many peoples’ opinion, has made the difficulties much harder than their counterparts in Dynasty Warriors 3 and Xtreme Legends.
  • Officers seem much smaller for some people in two player mode.
  • The mini map size has been decreased.
  • Apparently, Lü Bu is still a monster.
  • Cao Pi and Gongsun Zan are generic officers.
  • Game graphics (scenery, stage odds and ends, etc.) have been improved significantly.
  • The colors are reported to be softer (not as vibrant as the previous installations).
  • Hero difficulty (the difficulty above Hard) is apparently exceptionally hard indeed
  • The create an officer option is very nice, but many feel the various parts are not all original enough, and the styles you use to make officers mostly come from existing officers (and you can’t mix-and-match).

Copyright © 2001–2010 James Peirce
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Dynasty Warriors 4 is a trademark of KOEI Corporation and KOEI Co., Ltd. © 2002 KOEI Co., Ltd.

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March 7, 2014