Dynasty Warriors 6 (真・三國無双5, Shin Sangoku Musou 5) is the sixth title in the Dynasty Warriors series. It is a total revamp from previous games that has been rebuilt from the ground up. Koei planned to make this game feel like an old kung-fu action movie as the attacks are motion-captured by real life martial artists.
Though the game was designed to be released exclusively for next-gen consoles, the company decided to release a PlayStation 2 version of the title.
As the game has been rebuilt from scratch by Koei, many new features are introduced in the game while some have been removed. A new system takes place of the old attack chains, called Renbu. In previous ports, the number of attacks available to use were affected by the level and quality of the wielded weapon. The more powerful weapons would allow more attacks.
However, in this game, a meter called the "Renbu Gauge", fills as the player's character builds up more combos. The level of the gauge ranges from One, Two, Three, and Infinite. As the gauge grows higher, attacks will have longer range and will become more powerful. If the player does not attack for a period or takes heavy damage, the Renbu Gauge will decrease. The new Renbu system allows character, even at Gauge level 1 to execute infinite attack strings. Without unlocking Renbu Level 3 and Infinite, however, character can only access up to Level 2 except when he/she receives a Renbu Earring, which provides thirty seconds of Infinite Renbu.
- The branching attack system has been removed. For example, attack strings were previously ; , ; , , ; etc. This has been replaced by one-button strings, such as , , , , or , , , .
- When running for a set amount of time, a brief wind effect occurs which is used as an indicator for being able to perform a running attack, just like how moving on horseback for long enough causes the same effect to occur to indicate that a running horse jump is possible (carried over from Samurai Warriors 2).
- Like Samurai Warriors, characters can evade and perform unique attack animations when they win deadlocks.
- All characters can now perform an unblockable grab/grapple akin to Samurai Warriors 2 (refined from the grab-physics in Dynasty Warriors 4), done by pressing or while the character is blocking.
- Special Attacks, received from the Tome item drop, allows characters to use a devastating skill to defeat enemies and help out the player. The drop can usually be found off of defeated Guard Captains of bases. There are five attack types - Swift Attack, Volley, Fire, True Speed, and Rockfall.
- Swift Attack: immediately boosts the user's Renbu gauge up to the Infinite Renbu, and grants higher attack and defense power. When used when the player is at low, red health, the effects of Swift Attack increase.
- Volley: releases waves of arrows surrounding the player to annihilate enemies. Element may be added.
- Fire: sets off multiple eruptions of fire in random areas surrounding the character. When used on a base, the base is engulfed in fire and all opposing base forces inside of it are damaged.
- True Speed: greatly boosts the character's speed and are given unique attacks whilst running. When used on a horse, the Tome Attack also boosts the horse's traveling speed. Also increases range and/or adds an extra attack to the strong dashing attack.
- Rockfall: lets loose giant boulders of land on the enemy and, when used near a cliff or an area with elevation differences, the rocks fall down and slide on the ground.
- Dueling returns from Dynasty Warriors 4, though it differs from the previous system. There is a chance where an opposing officer will challenge the player into a duel, then surrounding officers and foot soldiers will form a circle around the two duelists. When the player gets too close to the enemy's side, a foot soldier will attack the player to get them back inside the duel; the same goes for the dueling enemy. Officers from either side can join the fray and the duel can be prematurely ended when either duelist exits the circle formation.
Any officer defeated during the duel will immediately drop 200 EXP points. Duels are usually executed when there is an equal amount of forces in one area. However, when a duel is initiated with the player completely surrounded by enemies, the crowd of soldiers forming the boundary is more likely to attack. If a horse is called when one is taking place, it may come into the arena, but will eventually find its way and wait in-between allied troops.
- Dynasty Warriors 6 sports a Skill Tree unique to all characters. Each branch is attained by gaining a level and it will be complete by level 50. With it, players can unlock many items, ranging from stat-boosting or add-on skills. Also available is a special ability which allows wild animals to refrain from attacking and movement-quickening skills, such as swimming and running.
- Weapons are no longer quality-based ranks and unique Fourth Weapons have been removed. The weapons' capabilities and attack strengths are randomly chosen. Characters with Musou Modes have three different-looking weapons while characters without stories all retain one weapon's design. Each weapon is now divided into three categories - Strength, Standard, and Skill.
- Strength - usually have a higher attack power, at the cost of Renbu Chains being kept for a smaller amount of time. They also increase the likelihood of breaking enemies' guards as the Renbu Gauge increases. The noting color background is red.
- Standard - the default weapon type; increases range as the Renbu Gauge increases and keeps Renbu Chains at a medium amount of time. Noted by the color green.
- Skill - grants greater attack speeds when powered up by the Renbu Gauge. Icons will have a blue background.
- Saddles are now found randomly. They can be found after breaking a crate or jar or as a random drop from an officer. At the end of a stage, like weapons, found horses can be kept or rejected as a player can only have a maximum eight horses.
- Horses can be leveled up to level five, and a horse also has four attributes that can go up to five hundred. The attributes are Speed, Jump, Destruction, and Attack. Like weapons, saddles can also have special abilities attached to them, such as Water Spirit (exclusive to Hex King), Renbu Gait, Find Weapon, Find Saddle, etc. They can also be called to the players' side by pressing the down button on the direction pad. Pressing R1 (PS3) / RB (360) on a horse also causes the horse to jump.
- There are six unique horses, three which are historical. The historical steeds are Shadow Runner, Hex King (Hex Mark), Red Hare King (Red Hare).
- In previous games, players could only travel on land. In Dynasty Warriors 6, they can now swim and climb ladders. Ladders are usually attached to towers or gates, while the swimming feature takes place in only a few stages. Players can also jump off cliffs, bridges, and other high leveled platforms and land on lower ground. If the player does this and lands near an enemy unit, they can sometimes surprise them and catch them off guard.
- Bases have also been revamped. In previous games, a character would defeat a Defense Captain to open a base's gates. In this installment, however, gates need to be attacked in order to be opened. If the player rides a fast enough horse or use an unconventional method to enter a base, the gates do not need to be smashed. To capture the base, the player needs to K.O a certain number of enemies inside to lower its health. Corporal units count as twenty health points and, when the remaining number of points is one hundred or lower, a Guard Captain comes out. The defeat of a Guard Captain is an immediate surrender of the base. During a base's inactive time, its health can restore.
- Units now consist of twenty or so foot soldiers and a bannerman, where a unit in previous games would only consist of a head soldier, and lower-ranked soldiers. A bannerman wields an army's banner, and frequently raises it to raise morale. During a banner's raising, any ally standing next to the bannerman gains a temporary power-up, such as Speed Up, Attack Up, or Defense Up.
- Engineers have been provided a greater role on the battlefield. When attacking a gate, Engineer units build catapults, put up ladders, and build rams. Ballistae have also been placed on the tops of gates, and frequently launch attacks on catapults and rams. They can be destroyed. Captains of Gates defend gates and can attack anyone around.
- Base Captains, who previously guarded exits to the battlefield, have been removed.
Like the previous title, individual characters have their own Musou Modes. Out of all the playable characters, only seventeen are given unique stories. No extra story stages or alternative paths are available.
Free Mode in Dynasty Warriors 6 is essentially identical to the Free modes in all previous game titles. In Free mode, players may select any unlocked stage and play that stage with any unlocked character. Out of all 41 playable characters only 9 of them are available at the start of the game. Additional characters must be unlocked by playing through the Musou Modes of the original nine and completing specific objectives (listed as "Targets" within the battle preparation screen).
Set challenges that use characters' base stats and automatically assigned weapons. The five modes are:
- Rampage - Defeat as many enemies as possible in the allotted time
- Sudden Death - Defeat as many enemies as possible without getting defeated; players and AI can be defeated in one hit
- Speed Run - Reach all fortresses as quickly as possible
- Havoc - Destroy as many items as possible
- Gauntlet - Gather EXP to get the highest score
Known as "Data Base" in the Japanese version, this section summarizes the entire Three Kingdoms era, includes terminology from the time period, a consolidated timeline, and brief bios of all the characters in the game (playable and NPCs). The data combines history and information found in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms novel. Similar historical entries can also been found in Romance of the Three Kingdoms series.
Essentially the gallery mode in the game. Allows players to view and rotate character models, scan through skill trees, and watch movies found in characters' Musou Modes. Horses and weapons can also be viewed. If the character reaches level 50, a voice gallery will also be unlocked.
- See also Dynasty Warriors 6/Weapon Movesets
Forty one playable characters are in this game with no new characters being introduced into the series.
The selection is based on the Dynasty Warriors 5 character list with the omissions of Pang De, Xing Cai, Jiang Wei, Da Qiao, Zhu Rong, Meng Huo, and Zuo Ci. Removed characters are excluded throughout the majority of the game, though "the daughter of Zhang Fei" is mentioned in Lu Bu's Musou mode. The Encyclopedia mentions Da Qiao in Xiao Qiao's biography and Meng Huo is mentioned in any Nanman-related entries.
Characters without Musou modes are clones in terms of movesets, save for Xiao Qiao who retains twin fans as her weapon.
- Dynasty Warriors 6: Special is an update of the game exclusive to the PS2 and PSP. It downscales the graphics and removes features such as swimming and dueling, but gains new stages, Musou Modes, cutscenes, and individualizes six other characters' weapons and movesets.
- Dynasty Warriors 6: Empires continues the line of Empires Expansions, where the player can play generic and unique characters to conquer all of China. A Create-a-Warrior system has also been added. It features Special's roster but without the cut features and downscaled graphics. Meng Huo also returns with a new weapon and design, as well as new maps and features.
- Dynasty Warriors: Strikeforce, avilable on the PSP, PS3 and Xbox 360. It introduces "Fury" forms, mythical transformations of the characters with exaggerated features and new abilities.
Aside from the guide books and character illustrations book, Koei officially funded the following publications for this game:
- Comic Shin Sangoku Musou 5 ~ Rumble Mission Vol. 1 - collection of four panel parody comics created and illustrated by fans. ISBN: 978-4-7758-0642-5
- Comic Shin Sangoku Musou 5 ~ Rumble Mission Vol. 2 - ISBN: 978-4-7758-0643-2
- Comic Shin Sangoku Musou 5 ~ Rumble Mission Vol. 3 - ISBN: 978-4-7758-0644-9
Free samples of these books -as well as the previously mentioned fan comic books for this series- can be seen here.
- This is the first Dynasty Warriors title to have the characters correctly pronounce Cao Cao's name (tsao tsao rather than "cow cow"). The first English dub from a Koei title to do the same -other than Romance of the Three Kingdoms- was the Warriors Orochi series.
- The character looks in this game later appear as alternate costumes in Warriors Orochi Z. However, a few of them have been slightly altered.
- Some of the battlefield items introduced in this game are later integrated in the series' online game.
- Zhao Yun, Diao Chan, and Sun Shang Xiang's costumes from this game appear as extra content in Ninja Gaiden Sigma II.
- One of the game's music tracks "Spring Of The East" was played during the swimming competition of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China.
- Official European site
- Official American site
- Official Japanese site
- Official Chinese site
- Official Taiwanese site
- Official Korean site
- Official Japanese PlayStation site