I’ve never played a Warriors game quite like Arslan: The Warriors of Legend. While it’s unmistakably a Warriors game, it’s pure focus on recreating the story from The Heroic Legend of Arslan has created a more streamlined, more focused Warriors game than anything I’ve seen from Omega Force before.
Once you’re past the opening video (complete with trademark Warrior’s guitar riffs), you’re greeted by a difficulty select ranging from easy to extreme. Past this, you’re launched straight into Arslan’s maiden battle. No menus, no distractions, you head straight into the beginning of Arslan’s story with a new tutorials to get you to grips with the game and what’s new for players familiar with Warriors already. One such feature is the Mardan Rush. This puts you in a direct control of a large group of either infantry, cavalry or archers and are used to deal out large amounts of damage as well as destroy obstacles on the map.
Now the biggest difference compared to recent Warriors games lies within its mission structure. Most Warriors games I’ve played tend to have massive battlefields, very long missions and should you fail, you’ve got to restart the whole ordeal all over again. Arslan however, has shorter missions that come with a handful of objectives to complete, with each mission lasting around 15-20 minutes. Each mission usually gives you a different character to play as and the longer missions will often switch characters mid battle. The characters each have their own playstyles despite the fact characters can share weapons. Arslan for example can wield a sword, spear and bow, though the latter two are unlocked over time.
It’s also one of the few Warriors games I’ve played that really make the key boss fights feel different from any other battle you come across. Important enemies will have a life bar appear on screen when you’re in their vicinity and you must first take down their shield bar in order for you to deal actual damage to them. These enemies are also more aggressive with their attacks, requiring you to dodge and guard against their offense. During some battles, they’ll be some field actions available to you in battle. The game will hint to let you know that you can use some objects in the field to stun your opponent so you can gain the advantage.
One of the main criticisms of the Warriors’ series is that it gets pretty repetitive after the novelty of killing 1000s of soldiers wears off. Arslan: The Warriors of Legend however manages to strike a good balance and I feel this is because of it’s pure focus on just conveying Arslan’s story. Everything in the game is directs you to the story mode and everything in functions simply to tell Arslan’s story without carrying any dead weight along for the ride.