Samurai Warriors 2: Empires review

This sword has nearly lost its edge entirely

GamesRadar+ Verdict


  • +

    Combos and specials can be addicting

  • +

    Dozens of playable characters

  • +

    The music heats up the action


  • -

    Mindless hack-n-slashin' gets boring

  • -

    Strategy section lacks real depth

  • -

    You've played this before... a lot

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Samurai Warriors 2: Empires looks great on paper: based on historical Japanese events, you must lead your feudal clan of soldiers into battle, hacking away at enemies, unleashing devastating special attacks all while devising strategy and executing policy in hopes of guiding your people to ultimate victory and the unification of your beloved Nippon.

Sounds awesome, no? Well, Koei must agree because they’ve made the same game countless times already under the Dynasty Warriors moniker. As the warriors here are of the samurai persuasion, China has been traded for Japan - but with little changing or improving much.

The game's crux is made of both strategy and battle modes where you first conceive a plan of action, then carry out attacks on neighboring territories to expand your domain. The strategy part of the game isa sort of board game-style territorial battle meant to add depth to the otherwise shallow combat sequences. It's fairly superficial though. But if you enjoy tinkering with banal harvest stats or blacksmith skills, it does eventually enable some fun upgrades like horses or the ability to hire ninjas, riflemen, etc.

More info

DescriptionSlice your way through hundreds of enemies to unify Japan in KOEI's latest addition to the Samurai Warriors series.
Franchise nameSamurai Warriors
UK franchise nameSamurai Warriors
Platform"PS2","Xbox 360"
US censor rating"Teen","Teen"
UK censor rating"",""
Release date1 January 1970 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)