Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition Review
Reviewed on Nintendo Switch
First of all, it is criminal that this isn't called The Legend of Hyrule Warriors or Hyrule Warriors Legendary Editions. With that aside, it is time to return to the return to Hyrule Warriors. That's right, not only did this game get ported to 3DS, it is now here on Switch. While the stream of ports is not the end of the world it is something of an oddity at this point.
This version includes everything from both of the previous versions and adds just a little bit more in. That includes all of the characters and adventure maps that were added after release for Wii U and the extra characters from the 3DS version. Even the base version had an absurd amount of things to do so with all of the extra things included the sheer volume of battles to undertake is really quite overwhelming. This means two things, if you love this game, you are going to get a ridiculous amount of time out of this version. However, if you find the gameplay to be a little repetitive, which it is, and that grates on your nerves, then you will probably not want to jump into this.
That being said with the massive amount on offer here the game will definitely keep you in for a long time if you enjoy the hack and slash gameplay that is the calling card of the Warriors games. The plethora of characters available to you as soon as you've finished the first story mission is incredible, and with multiple unlockable characters as well you will never be wanting for new attack patterns. Once you add in the different weapons for some of the characters you end up with even more variety in your arsenal.
The story mode is comprised of multiple levels, all of which are quite lengthy, that task the player with ever changing objectives in order to win the ultimate battle of good versus evil. Fairly run of the mill stuff here but the ability to play through the story mode in co-op helps to make it more enjoyable, in fact co-op makes the entire game more enjoyable. That being said the multiplayer is not worth playing when undocked, the screen is simply too small to be practical given the scope of the battles and the performance suffers as well. If you are playing single player then you can now switch between playable characters which makes some of the maps immensely more enjoyable and really speeds things up.
The bulk of the game is held in the adventure mode, which has multiple maps based on other Zelda games that all have slightly different mechanics at play. They also hold the rest of the hidden characters and weapons which you will need to unlock by beating certain areas with different ranks. Getting the best rank on some of the maps requires an incredible amount of skill. These tasks take the game from mindless hack and slash to a genuinely challenging action game that demands perfect timing in your dodges and your counterattacks. The thrill of unlocking new weapons and characters is an amazing high that makes it well worth your time.
With the sheer volume of things to do in the game if you love the gameplay then you will feel spoiled. That being said, while the new additions are a nice touch it is hard to recommend this to anyone that has played either of the other versions. If you enjoy the Warriors style action then this is definitely one of the better games, with the Zelda coat on boss fights and characters themselves helping to elevate it for fans of both series. Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition is a dense if somewhat simple game that rewards your ability to stick with the repetitive gameplay with an incredible amount of unlockables and increasingly challenging maps. The game isn't a must buy but it is a lot of fun. Cutting down a horde of enemies with Link being chased down by the Great Fairy is a feeling that no other game can offer and it will put a smile on your face. This is definitely the best version, and if it gets its hooks in you, you will be hard pressed to fit in any other games this year.