Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty – Review

In ancient China, there is a mysterious conflict that involves humans and demons. However, there is more beyond the surface. As the protagonist, will we be able to solve this conflict, or will the world fall to it? Let’s take a look at our review of Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty!

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty
  • Platforms: PlayStation 5 (reviewed) / PlayStation 4/ Xbox Series X|S / Xbox One/ Xbox Game Pass/ Steam/ Microsoft Store
  • Release date: March 3, 2023
  • Developer: Team Ninja

*Special thanks to Koei Tecmo PR for providing a Playstation 5 review key!*



From the official website:

184 A.D. China at the end of the Late Han Dynasty.
The world is in turmoil and infested with demons,
and the long and prosperous dynasty is on the verge of collapse.

As the Yellow Turban Rebellion rages,
led by Zhang Jiao’s Way of the Taiping,
the protagonist, a militia soldier heads out to suppress
the Yellow Turbans when he meets a young man.

This encounter engulfs the protagonist
into a swirling intrigue of chaos.

As with similar Team Ninja games, storytelling is not the strongest point in Wo Long. The game suffers from some interesting pacing and a story that does not make sense at times. It is not a well-developed narrative and is not delivered as other soul-like games. It feels at times that Wo Long is suffering an identity crisis when it wants to be like Sekiro, but it’s its own thing. At times, it succeeds in finding its own identity, but at others, it falls flat. That is not to say the story is bad, it just is an okay story.

From what I gathered, you are the self-insert protagonist as in any soul-like game. As this protagonist, you are tasked with fighting against the Yellow Turbans, but ultimately demons are involved in some capacity. After meeting some other important NPCs in the game, you are now tasked with not only stopping the Yellow Turbans but stopping the demons. However, as mentioned, the story is not the strongest point of Team Ninja games. Their bread and butter lie in the gameplay. Let’s take a look at Wo Long’s gameplay and see if it excels.


At moments, Wo Long stands tall with some amazing gameplay and combat. This game is a solid mix of Sekiro and Nioh in terms of gameplay. The player has a great deal of mobility and can move around each stage disposing of enemies with weapons at their disposal. Combat is solid once engaged with an enemy, where players can cheese some enemies, or use strategic battle tactics to take down the enemies. The bosses of each stage are no pushovers either. Players are in for a challenge, and it is a good challenge done well.

Through each stage, players can also feel the difficult curve ramping up. From the start of the stage, the difficulty is easy, and as the stage progresses, the difficulty pacing increases. It is done surprisingly well, and probably the best from any Team Ninja game I have experienced. However, that is to say, the gameplay does not suffer any issues. Some of the issues are the camera has a mind of its own (especially during intense combat moments/boss fights), sometimes the enemy AI is just completely inconsistent in terms of seeing you or not, the pointless weapons loot system, items that were gathered and never even examined/used, there is only one path in each stage to take despite being large stages, and the online component does suffer some lag due to the net code the system uses.

My biggest gripe from these issues is the weapons/armor loot system. Team Ninja seems to stuffer this issue with every single souls-like game they make. Players will get the same weapon 15 times, but different ranks, some stats, and with some minor differences in terms of perks attached to the weapon. It ultimately proves useless as it just takes up inventory space. I understand there is a shop to sell the weapons now, but that still doesn’t deter getting the same equipment at almost every stage in multiple quantities. It is better to just grab one weapon, and upgrade it as it can be better than 80% of the weapons found in the stages.

Overall, Wo Long has some very solid gameplay, some of which are the best that Team Ninja has ever done, but it’s weighed down by issues that carry from previous souls-like titles they developed. Next, let’s take a look at the audio and visuals of the title.


Visually, Wo Long looks fantastic in terms of character design. It is good to see characters like Cao Cao, Lu Bu, and others known from the Romance of the Three Kingdoms era brought to life and looking fantastic. The level design is good and does a fantastic job of capturing the feel of ancient China. Some issues like in enemy designs as there is very little variety in terms of enemies.

Audio-wise, Wo Long features languages in Simplified Chinese, English, and Traditional Chinese. I have only played the game in the English Language, which was hit or miss. At times some of the voice actors delivered their lines fantastically and did a great job at doing it. At other times, it just seemed awkward and out of place. I will have to revisit the game and try one of the different languages and see how it holds up. Soundtrack-wise, the game has a good soundtrack with a variety of tracks. However, some songs do play more than others. It is not an issue, just be forewarned about this.

Fun Factor:

Wo Long is a fun game when you get immersed. Each person is different when it comes to souls-like games. Outside of the main stages, there is several side stages to complete as well. However, some of the issues I mentioned in the gameplay section did turn me off from enjoying the game at times. Remember to pace yourself and have fun, as there is fun to be had here.


Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty shows that Team Ninja can improve upon their gameplay in souls-like games. There are some great improvements from some of their other titles, and this is the best they have offered to date. However, the story-telling and pacing in terms of the story are okay at best. However, that has not been their strong point in their games. Wo Long shines in terms of gameplay.

However, that is not to say the game does not have issues. In short, Wo Long suffers the same issues as other Team Ninja titles. It is as if they fix some of the mechanics while leaving others in place. Nothing says useless loot when I pick up my 15th spear with a slightly different perk. It does not deter from the gameplay entirely, but it does break the immersion at times. There are some great components in Wo Long, but the same issues that persist in other Team Ninja games, persist here. It stops it short of being a great game, to just being a good game.

That being said, if you are looking for a new souls-like game, I do recommend checking this out if you want to satiate that fix or are just curious. You might not be disappointed. It is currently on Game Pass and as of this writing, the game is on sale in several stores (again as of this writing), which is surprising for a sale already on release.

  • Until next time, mgs2master2 out!


*Special thanks to Koei Tecmo PR for providing a Playstation 5 review key!*

About Mgs2master2

A gamer and jack of all trades. I enjoy many things, but overall just enjoying life. Hopefully, I can add enjoyment to your life through my articles or interactions.

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