E3 2014: Taking Down an Army in Hyrule Warriors

Me against the world.

The Zelda name has always been associated with adventures and puzzle-solving. While iconic protagonist Link has saved the world numerous times before, he has always achieved this through a combination of wit and action.

Hyrule Warriors sends the characters of the Zelda universe into the other end of the spectrum, throwing them into a chaotic battlefield which pits a single hero against hundreds of enemies at once in the style of Dynasty Warriors. Once again there is much saving to be done, but this time around, the methods through which this is achieved are dramatically different.

Curious if this new approach would be as enjoyable as it was strange to me, I picked up the Wii U GamePad to single-handedly face off against the enemy armies of Hyrule Warriors.

As Link, I was pit against an invading army of moblins that stood in the way of recapturing Hyrule Castle. Numbers alone were not a concern, however, as I quickly discovered that I was more than capable of taking out entire squads at a time with a few swings of my chosen weapon. Building combos was simply a matter of tapping one of the two attack buttons in quick succession. Combining and alternating the order of button presses would lead to different combos that were as flashy as they were destructive.

Carving through large groups of enemies with naught but a few button presses left me as satisfied as I was incredulous. Here, in the world of Hyrule Warriors, Link was an untouchable and overwhelming force who could not be stopped.

It is good to see you on the battlefield, Zelda.

If the use of combos was not enough, I could also build up my special meter. When it was filled, I had the option to unleash a powerful, one-off attack that was effective at quickly clearing groups of enemies. The ability also served as a means of dealing a high amount of damage to tougher enemies, such as bosses.

Physical damage could also be supplemented by the use of items. Acquiring bombs allowed me to destroy boulders that had previously obstructed my path towards objective points, and the effectiveness of items could be temporarily boosted by a power-up.

Like the mechanics of combat, objectives were straightforward. The colour-coded minimap would flag the locations which required my aid, making it easy to simply rush past the hundreds of enemies that stood between my next objective and me.

My fight was both hampered and aided by several familiar faces, with Impa and Zelda clashing with the forces of the evil Wizro. Indeed, the sight of Princess Zelda slicing up several moblins was especially entertaining.

The battle of Hyrule Castle culminated with a fight against the familiar beast Dodongo, who sported the same weakness for eating bombs. Despite not claiming most of the map territory, defeating Dodongo proved to be devastating enough to enemy forces to claim Hyrule Castle as my own. Not exactly what I'd call tactically sound, but rewarding nonetheless.

The simplicity of combat in Hyrule Warriors was both its greatest strength and greatest weakness. Executing combos started off as feeling punchy and enjoyable, but quickly devolved into monotony. With the stage broken up by similarly themed objectives and a final boss battle, I can only hope that Hyrule Warriors offers up more variety upon its release.

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Zorine

Zorine Te

Zorine “harli” Te is an Associate Editor at GameSpot and is based in Australia.
Hyrule Warriors

Hyrule Warriors

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30 comments
g1rldraco7
g1rldraco7

Still can't believe this has happened and yet I want to play it O.O

hitomo
hitomo

I like how they try to give this BS some seriousnes by sitting ina dojo ...


memo to myself: leave this planet asap

Kunakai
Kunakai

Yay, two of my favourite series of all time defiled! At least Battlefield Hardline looked like it might be entertaining, this just looks terrible in every conceivable way! :( 

amdreallyfast
amdreallyfast

"...quickly devolved into monotony."  I figured.  These Dynasty Warrior games are like that.

Cowbie
Cowbie

It looks boring. Whats the point?

keviac
keviac

Seemed allot more like a commercial and less like a preview

Dissentioncc
Dissentioncc

Building combos using two attack buttons...yawn.

Poison-tooth
Poison-tooth

 Could Hyrule Warriors be the Dynasty Warriors game for Zelda fans? No. Its the Zelda game for Dynasty Warriors fans which is very different. I think the majority of Zelda fans didn't ask for this kind of game at all.

leandrro
leandrro

past gen visuals in 2015, thats what nintendo became

kerrman
kerrman

Might be the first Zelda game I enjoy in years.

ermhm
ermhm

"It has both the essence of Zelda and the essence of Dynasty Warriors, as well as a lot of other essences they have." Wut.

hochstreck
hochstreck

I have to say this games looks quite interesting - as long as there are challenging difficulties to choose from or at least ways to make it challenging.

sdinh225
sdinh225

Looks alright. Can't be as bad as Soul Calibur Legends...

thingta42
thingta42

Being able to play as a really hot looking Zelda? I'm sold!

Poodger
Poodger

This looks stupid. It is taking the best parts of Zelda and ignoring them.

Sphensen
Sphensen

Day 1, I've never played a Dynasty Warriors game but I already know I'll love this one

Vexov
Vexov

No different then Dynasty warriors mindless spamming with no strategy needed to conquer maps. Im sure it has nothing more then basic DW mechanics, very boring indeed.


DW needs to enforce strategy on the map and tone down the solo godlike crap, it also needs a good character customization, stats, abilities etc etc. It need weapon crafting or even item perhaps, some modes where you go freemode and fight tuff fights for resources.


Combat needs use a more deeper combo system: use this combo to stun, slow, break defense etc, with different damaging combats that deal bonus damage if you stunned an opponent  or slowed, broke their defense. What they need to do is limit the CC's if they did, 1 hero shouldn't have a knock-up + knock-down + stun + root, it does require balance and a limit to what you pick for your customized hero for hard choices or for team comboing/support.

erichostile
erichostile

Man Nintendo brought it this year at E3. I wish this would have happened last year but I am very happy to see some more quality titles to the console. **Prepares for Nintendo haters to bash me**


I have a PS4 and XOne too so I am not a blind fanboy just a matter of fact

simon1812
simon1812

it looks just like another mindless hack&slash to me, it might be fun though.

jinzo9988
jinzo9988

The real monotony is realizing that this is the same game they've been releasing since Dynasty Warriors 2 14 years ago.  If people like it then more power to them but I can't imagine someone buying these things as they come out and being thoroughly entertained by each one.  I recently bought DW8 Xtreme Legends Complete on PC and I could stomach it only because I haven't played a Warriors game since DW4.

At least the world doesn't have to experience The Yellow Turban Rebellion for the dozenth time with this one.

JoInfo
JoInfo

I love Dynasty Warriors. I love Zelda even more. This game is going to be fantastic.

jonny_dutch
jonny_dutch

"Could Hyrule Warriors be the Dynasty Warriors game for Zelda fans?"
Yes. That's the point. Like the only point. Well done Gamespot.

GameBeaten
GameBeaten

Looking forward to this game. It'll be the second Dynasty Warriors game I've played (unless I get around to purchasing One Piece: Pirate Warriors 2 first).

snk0610
snk0610

The game reminds a lot


Heavenly Sword in the gameplay style

leimonides
leimonides

Have always had a liking for Dynasty Warriors (though I do greatly prefer Sengoku Basara). I do hope that they take more strides to add different aspects to the style of the game like Sengoku Basara did with those special objectives and different ways to put extra challenge to the game); it kinda looks like they have here, with the type of boss battle shown off in the clip. 


I've never played a Zelda game, but hopefully they add some more elements lifted from Zelda games, more objectives than just killing off waves of enemies, capturing bases. Perhaps a mini-boss duel like in one of the earlier DW games (4, I think?), maybe even mini puzzles, since that's a staple of the series. A nice change-up would really be great. 

atopp399
atopp399

Seems like it could get boring pretty quickly.

Foppe
Foppe

Love Dynasty Warriors, adding Zelda is the extra frosting.

Gatman32
Gatman32

@leandrro People are way too obsessed with visuals this days, the game looks fun.  Get over it.