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Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty Complete Edition – Review

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Wo Long Fallen Dynasty Complete Edition Review

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty is an action-adventure video game developed by Team Ninja and published by KOEI TECMO which takes the steps of an infamous and unforgiving genre Soulslike. The Soulslike games have become more popular in recent years and the game developers are pushing players to challenge themselves with a challenging combat system with a compelling story and characters.

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty was initially released in 2023 and throughout the following year, they introduced three DLCs for the base game to let the players embark on a new chapter of the story with even more treacherous enemies. Now, with the release of Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty Complete Edition, players will be able to experience the compelling but challenging journey with all the DLCs included. However, the question remains, is it worth getting it and does the gameplay of the game do justice or not?

Story

The story of Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty takes place in China in 184 CE. A rebellion named Yellow Turban which is led by three Zhang brothers, Zhang Fei, Zhang Jiao, and Zhang Rang breaks out in China with the help of a powerful Elixir. The Elixir is capable of unimaginable Power and was given to them by a mysterious Taoist named Yu Ji.

Players take control of an unnamed protagonist during a rebel raid on a rural village and embark on a terrifying adventure in the lands of China that have been poisoned and altered with the power of Elixir. Throughout the journey, the protagonist meets various characters who will embark on the journey alongside him to stop the Demonic Qi from spreading and ruling over China.

Gameplay

The gameplay of Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty might feel like a Soulslike game due to the difficulty of the enemies and the bosses but at the same time it is not and it is completely unique in its own way. However, before I talk about all of the gameplay mechanics that are unique to Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty, the actual main story mission designs are linear. Meaning, there isn’t much variety for exploring the world as you pursue each story mission. There are various paths that you can traverse in the missions but you always end up routing to the main path along with gathering a bunch of items.

Despite the linear design of the main missions, the major identical aspect of the gameplay that you would find in Wo Long with the Soulslike genre is the resting mechanic. Similar to the Soulslike games, Wo Long introduces its own resting space, a Battle Flag that players can raise to secure a checkpoint, level up their character, make battle preparations, and much more.

Now, let’s talk about the gameplay that is unique and what makes Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty challenging. One of the main systems in the game which is a part of every mission during the journey is the Morale Rank. Morale is basically your character’s Rank in Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty. You will increase the Morale Rank of your character as you defeat enemies. The higher the rank you get, the more damage you will deal to the enemies. It is also the other way around because the enemies will also have the Morale Rank. Their rank is shown above their heads and if their rank is higher than your character then they will deal more damage to you. There are different levels of Morale Rank on the enemies and they can be known by the color of the rank. The lower morale ranks will have a Green color, the medium rank will have a Yellow color, the higher-level rank will have a Purple color, and the highest rank will have a Red color.

The highest Morale Rank is 25 and your character will reach this rank in each mission if you succeed in defeating all the enemies and bosses. After completing the mission, your Morale Rank will come down to 0 and you will start the next mission from 0. So, in every mission, you will have to defeat the enemies to increase your Morale Rank to defeat the higher-level enemies easily. Performing the Fatal Strikes will help you gain some more Morale. You can also gain even more Morale by deflecting the Critical Blow attacks of the enemies. If you get hit by an enemy attack, you will lose a certain amount of Morale so, try not to get hit or die because you will have to regain the Morale by eliminating the enemies.

Since the combat abilities are essential for maintaining the Morale Rank, the combat is based on its own unique system which is somewhat inspired by Sekiro. With the ability of both light attacks and charged attacks, the deflection plays a crucial role in both survival and defeating the enemies just like in Sekiro, and it is based on a sub-system called the Spirit Gauge. Spirit Gauge is right under your Health Bar. When you are about to start a combat, your Spirit Gauge will be neutral. As you hit enemies or deflect their attacks, your spirit gauge will start building up. Meaning, it will increase towards the right side and it will be Blue. If you take hits and fail to deflect the attacks of enemies, the spirit gauge will increase to the left side and it will be Orange.

Blue Spirit Gauge is Positive and it means you can consume the Spirit Gauge by performing the Martial Arts move or casting the Spells. Orange Spirit Gauge is Negative and if your orange spirit gauge fills up, your posture will be broken and it will leave your character open to the enemies. Your character will be stunned and you can easily take Critical Blow from your enemies so, you will have to avoid it as much as you can in the combat. The Orange Spirit Gauge will also fill up if you randomly press the dodge/deflect button, cast spells, or perform Martial Arts moves even at the neutral stage. All of these consume a portion of Spirit Gauge so, you cannot overuse these moves. Deflecting perfectly will increase spirit to the positive side so, you would want to wait for enemies to do their move to deflect it. You will have to land the Fatal Strikes after deflecting the moves of enemies to quickly increase the Spirit Gauge so, you can use your other moves in the combat.

With the Spirit Gauge full, you will be able to cast spells that you unlock by leveling up and setting them in your Spell Diamond. Spells are only unlocked by leveling up your character in a certain virtue. There are 5 different virtues and each leveling up in each virtue will give you a spell point for the certain virtue. Meaning, if you level up your character in Fire Virtue, you will gain a spell point that can be consumed on a Fire Virtue path to get a fire spell.

Spells also work a bit similar to your Martial Arts because they consume the Spirit Gauge as well when you cast them. So, you can cast them only a number of times in the fight because you do not want your posture to be broken during the fight. Spells also require a certain Morale Rank for casting. As an example, you can cast the “Unstoppable Force” spell when you are at Morale Rank 7 or higher. So, you will have to gain the Morale Rank in each mission before you get to use the specific spells on the enemies and bosses.

In addition to Spirit Gauge, the main protagonist also has a Divine Beast Gauge. Filling up the Divine Beast Gauge will allow you to summon the Divine Beast. Furthermore, players can also summon Divine Beast Resonation in which the Divine Beast will power up their character and allies for the fight. Divine Beast Gauge can fill up overtime but it can take several minutes before it refills again. So, in order to fill up the Divine Beast quickly, you will have to defeat enemies and deflect their attacks. Similar to the spells, players can also select the preferred Divine Beast for the missions by resting at the Flag.

Another crucial system that helps with the gameplay is leveling your character. Unlike other Soulslike games, Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty offers an in-depth leveling system for the players to pursue and build their character for the preferred build. While resting at the Flag, accessing the Level Up option will show five different virtues. Each Virtue is set to increase specific stats of your character as well as give you a spell point for the specific Wizardry. In order to level up a virtue, you will be required to have a specific amount of Genuine Qi. You cannot level up until you have a specific amount. To know when you have the required amount of Genuine Qi to level up, look at the bottom left of the screen, and if you see your Genuine Qis are golden, it means you are eligible for leveling up your character.

Virtues play an important role in defining your character build and if you are going for a specific build, you will have to level up your character in that same virtue as well to get the most of the advantages. You will have to select the virtue in which you want to level up and select the invest option to raise the level to increase particular stats. However, you can also undo your investment in that virtue at any time. If you want to change your build then you can undo the levels from a virtue and invest them into the one you want. It greatly enhances the flexibility of your gameplay and adds a layer of replayability allowing you to reembark on the journey with a new build.

Speaking of build, last but not least aspect that is required for it is the actual weapons. Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty does a great job of offering different kinds of weapons. Each type of weapon synergizes with a certain virtue that will allow you to further enhance the strength of your character.

DLC Content

If we talk about the content for the DLCs included in the Complete Edition, each one provides a significant amount of content for players to enjoy a new exciting story chapter along with new equipment, weapon categories, Divine Beasts, Demons, Bosses, and much more. However, the playstyle of the DLCs is still the same and follows the linear path. However, the new-level designs of the DLC are as superb as the original game content with amazing boss designs and even higher difficulty that truly tests the mastering of deflecting abilities.

Sound and Visuals

The audio and visual representation of Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty is actually stunning allowing players to experience the density of immersion at every stage of the game. The level design for each mission portrays a unique viewing perspective in players’ minds that is greatly enhanced by the music. One of the best visualizations in the game is for the bosses. Each boss is designed uniquely with different phases which greatly emphasize the art of combat.

Verdict – Score 7/10

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty is a great action-adventure game that is both inspired by Soulslike and unique in its own way. The game offers a compelling story but a challenging journey for the players to embark on and if you have ever played Sekiro then you would find it much more to your liking. However, if you are not great with deflecting the incoming attacks in such games of this genre then you might have a very hard time even fighting the regular enemies.

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty is now available on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, PC, XBOX Series X|S, and XBOX One.

Playing video games since a kid, Max Payne was the first game I ever played. I adore the soundtracks and worlds created in gaming. Passionate about writing gaming guides across all genres for all platforms. Confident in my publications in order to help other gamers across the world. I love video games in general and they are close to my heart.

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