[PlayStation 4] Shadow Warrior 3 Review

by Ceidz, Owner

Shadow Warrior 3 from Flying Wild Hog and Devolver Digital is the newest PS installment in the Shadow Warrior franchise. Check our Shadow Warrior 3 review!

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Fallen corporate shogun Lo Wang and his former employer turned nemesis turned sidekick Orochi Zilla embark on an improbable mission to recapture an ancient dragon they unwillingly unleashed from its eternal prison. Armed with a punishing mix of blades and bullets, Lo Wang must traverse uncharted parts of the world to track down the dark beast and push the apocalypse back yet again. All it will take is the mask of a dead god, a dragon’s egg, a touch of magic, and enough firepower to hold off the impending cataclysm.

Almost five years after its prequel released on PlayStation 4, Shadow Warrior 3 from Flying Wild Hog and Devolver Digital is finally out on Sony’s console. I was curious about this franchise, and since we had already reviewed Shadow Warrior 2, I had great expectations about the sequel – which were met!

As is the case with the previous games, Shadow Warrior 3 presents a mix of fighting sequences using your equipped weapon, which is either swords or guns, and your ninja parkour abilities as you jump from place to place using either aerial dashes that will allow you to jump over huge gaps, running on walls, using grapples to reach higher platforms and more, which were great and changed how I approached exploration and fighting against enemies.

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Lo Wang – the series’ main protagonist – is in bad shape following the events of Shadow Warrior 2 and is now the last ninja in the world. He has one chance to make things right, and as you start, you’ll learn more about what led to the events of this game. This gameplay section also serves as a tutorial for newcomers – so I didn’t feel like I missed too much playing this game without having played the previous installments.

Shadow Warrior 3 is played from a first-person view, and you’ll walk through the linear but gorgeous environments from said perspective. You’ll begin by climbing a rainy mountain, and you’ll then go into the jungles! You’ll meet a ton of enemies, with all out to get you. The levels are well-designed, and while they’re mostly of a linear nature, there is plenty to see around you, and exploring is rewarded. You’ll soon discover a grapple, and I loved how the level design tool advantage of it. Using it, you can swing between hooks, and even hook on enemies to get to them. This was definitively fun to play with.

The enemies can be either pushed back with a kick or using your Chi, sliced with your equipped weapon, or taken down using your gun. You can seamlessly change weapons using the R1 and R2 buttons, with each one being assigned to a weapon type. There are three different difficulty settings, and I thought that the Medium default difficulty was fair, with battles that won’t feel overwhelming. You can use an easier difficulty mode if you just want to enjoy the environment and the story without being stopped by the enemies. There are also a lot of challenges that keep the gameplay fresh as I was definitively varying how I was getting rid of enemies to attain them.

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As you explore and fight enemies, you’ll find orbs that will allow you to upgrade different aspects of your character. Purple orbs are used to strengthen your character by either increasing his Chi for physical attacks or increasing his health. Blue orbs are used to upgrade your weapons, granting you more ammo and some special skills to help you along the way.

Shadow Warrior 3 is targeted at a mature audience. There’s a lot of blood spilled, and killing the enemies with your weapon is gory, to say the least. The game is very detailed, featuring gorgeous locations to explore. The voice acting of the main character is also perfect: I liked his voice, the way he talks, and I actually chuckled a few times at what he said. The cut-scenes are also very great. When playing Shadow Warrior 3 on a PlayStation 5, the game will run in a boosted version with enhanced graphics and framerate, which helps to make it an even better experience.

On the trophies side, you’re looking at a good list containing 26 Bronze trophies, 8 Silver trophies, and 4 Gold trophies to unlock on your path towards that shiny new Platinum. A few of them are awarded for progressing through the 11 chapters in the game. Several are tied to finishing off enemies with different methods to upgrading your weapons, and the remaining ones are for obtaining items from various enemy types. I loved how hilarious some of them are, the “acupuncture” trophy actually made me laugh out loud. It shouldn’t be a hard Platinum trophy to add to your collection, but you do need to know there’s no chapter selection, so you’ll have to do everything in one go.

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Shadow Warrior 3 is a great, intense, and really fun first-person action game targeted at a mature audience due to its violence. It’s a blast to play out and I liked exploring the different environments that the game had to offer, and I have to mention that the voice acting for the main character stole the show. This game is an easy one to recommend to gamers looking for a very good action game on PlayStation 4, especially at its $49.99 asking price.

This Shadow Warrior 3 review is based on a PlayStation copy provided by Devolver Digital.

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