Dynasty Warriors: Online (真・三國無双 Online) is a massively multiplayer online installment in the Dynasty Warriors series. The game was out for the public on November 2007 and it's currently only available in Japan, China, Thailand, Korea, and North America. The game was made available in Japan for the PS3 on February 18, 2010. Aeria Games began its closed beta for the North American version October 14, 2010 and released it later the same year in November. Services for the North American version will be closing on January 10, 2014.
Online plays like its earlier predecessor, Dynasty Warriors BB, an online game that was discontinued on November 1, 2006. The main difference between the two is that Online requires slightly less demanding hardware specs than BB. Both games feature a quasi-RPG element in which the player can run around the world and chat with various characters. The graphics and battle mechanics for the game use Dynasty Warriors 5 as its base while the transition to Online Z updates the visuals to match those from Dynasty Warriors 7.
Players are allowed to create one character per account. Characters can be customized by their name, sex, figure, face type, hair type, voice, and standard colors. There are four different body types, eight different faces, ten hairstyles, seven voices for the men, and nine voices for the ladies. Colors can be chosen by a color picker. Once a character is created, they can choose which faction they wish to serve in the Dynasty Warriors universe. They may switch allegiance after their registration.
Each player is given a tutorial to complete from a general from the kingdom they wish to serve, which determines the age and intimacy level with their commander. Tweaking these stats will affect cutscenes and their familiarity with other officers. If they're seen favorably, they maybe addressed by name.
Levels are not set. Stats can be adjusted by the weapon and equipment that the character has equipped. Equipment is mainly the clothing that the character wears, which alters stats such as speed, power, and defense. Instead of levels players are given ranks that are gained by acquiring honor. Certain battle bonuses are unlocked with higher ranks such as the ability to equip better weapons and gear. With rank players can gain a cape which give a bonus depending on the area.
Most weapons in the game mimic the actions for the series' characters. For example, equipping a giant pole axe will make the character fight like Xu Huang and a short sword will mimic Sun Quan's moveset. Original weapons for the online game are also included through certain updates. Alternately, players can chat with other players through text and animated emoticons or participate in Player vs Player (PvP) events.
Players are limited to C2~C5 of the original moveset. There are 6 different emblems that can be attached to a weapon to modify the C1 and C6 attacks. While most of these attacks are new, combinations may sometimes mimic the motions for the weapon's original C6 or the R1 abilities in the Warriors Orochi series. The emblems are as follows:
- Thrust: A frontal attack or floating orb.
- Pierce: A ranged or area of effect attack.
- Crescent: An attack that curves; frontal or area of effect attack.
- Moon: Area of effect attack that will knock enemies away.
- Fan: C6 only. Powerful ranged attack that knocks enemies away.
- Eclipse: C6 only. Area of effect attack that will daze enemies.
Weapon stats and combos can also be increased by flasks dropped from enemies on the battlefield. Players can stock up to seven flasks and can obtain more by upgrading. Each weapon has different requirements for upgrading. The greater number of flasks used to upgrade a weapon, the stronger the upgrade will be. With seven flasks players can upgrade the weapon's combo. Similar to older Dynasty Warriors games, weapons are limited to their C4 until the player upgrades them to learn more. Upgrading also add an "evolution" that extends the weapon's normal combo when the musou gauge is full. Learning a weapon's entire moveset and maintaining seven flasks unlocks the weapon's Advanced ability. This ability is unique to each weapon, however two weapons can share the same Advanced.
Bodyguards, humans or animals such as a tiger or wolf can follow the player in battle. Bodyguards can gain levels and abilities and animals have a chance to gain a natural element each time they level. Players can use their flasks to upgrade a bodyguard to increase defense. Each bodyguard can have a maximum of two abilities. A fully upgraded bodyguard with abilities during a fully charged musou can increase nearby ally stats and debuff enemies depending on their equipped skills.
Each player can choose to participate in a story scenario with their army. Each scenario features several mini-battles that the player can either watch on a map or personally take part in. Based on the character's rank, at the end of a scenario they may be shown in a cutscene with their chosen general, often having that general displaying some affection or respect for the character for their own reason. Currently, the known story scenarios are as follows:
- Anti-Dong Zhuo Union (November 1, 2006 ~ November 25, 2007)
- Surrounding Lu Bu (November 28, 2007 ~ July 13, 2008)
- Battle of Guandu (July 15, 2008 ~ March 15, 2009)
- Battle of Chi Bi ~ Shisho Ranbu (March 17, 2009 ~November 2009)
- Unrest in Jing (November 2009 ~ November 2010)
- Diao Chan's Plot ~ Souten Ranbu (November 2010 ~ July 2011)
- Battle of Tong Gate (July 2011 ~ March 2012)
- Ryujin Ranbu (March 15, 2012 ~ July 17, 2013)
- Rise of the Sima Family (July 18, 2013 ~ March 20, 2014)
- Battle of Mount Ding Jun (March 20, 2014 ~ July 17, 2014)
- Battle of Jing Province (July 17, 2014)
- Unrest in Jing (Start of Beta ~ March 2011)
- Diao Chan's Plot ~ Heavenly Strike (March 2011 ~ November 2011)
- Battle of Tong Gate ~ Heavenly Strike (November 2011 ~ August 2012)
- Battle of Yi Ling ~ Dragon Strike (August 2012 ~ June 2012)
- Rise of the Little Conqueror ~ Dragon Strike (June 2012 ~ Present)
The Souten Ranbu expansion was given a small tie in with the release of the movie series, Red Cliff, special outfits and scenarios are unlocked for both this game and the Romance of the Three Kingdoms MMO. These outfits and story bits are created as an homage to the film version of certain characters. More extras were unlocked when Part II was released in Japanese theaters on April 10, 2009. To celebrate the two franchises, a special interview with the film's director, John Woo, and Koei's Kou Shibusawa was posted on Online's website. Starting in July 2009 the game also staged a crossover event with the TV anime, Souten Kōro. Players could collect a scroll with the anime Cao Cao.
Channel α's ninth episode had the director for the Ryujin Ranbu update present for the show.
- Fuun Musouden
- Performed by Hironobu Kageyama
- *used for BB only
- Performed by Jay Chou
- *used for Online only
- Official English site
- Official Japanese site, PS3 site, Souten Ranbu site
- Official Chinese site
- Official Taiwanese site
- Official Korean site
- Character blog messages
- Screenshot contest
- BB and Online Japanese wiki
- Yuri's DWO/SSMO Wikia
- English Online wiki
- Online Image song music video - cosplay photo shoot
- Gameplay footage
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