5 Tips To Get You Started In Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty

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| March 1, 2023

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty is a new action RPG from Team Ninja and Koei Tecmo. Fans of Nioh will find this game instantly recognizable, as it looks and plays very similarly to that title. Wo Long is set in the historical fictionalization of the war of the Three Kingdoms, and you play as a lowly soldier rising through the ranks during the Yellow Turban Rebellion.

Here are 5 important tips to know when playing Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty for the first time!

Morale Matters

Wo Long features a unique morale system that can change the tide of battle. You gain morale when you defeat enemies and raise marking flags and battle flags. Raising flags also will increase the max level of your fortitude. Always be on the lookout for these, explore the map thoroughly, and go off the beaten path. You never know what you will find! 

Always make sure to activate every marking and battle flag you see. Having high fortitude lowers the damage you take, as well as increasing the damage you deal. It also affects your spirit gauge, and how much you gain or lose spirit when executing attacks, magic, and skills. I will stress again, Morale Matters.

Executing an enemy with a finisher.
That looks painful!

Equipment and Items

Equipment in Wo Long functions similarly to Nioh, in that you’ll find new equipment often, and these gear pieces have many varying stats and bonus effects. Armor will range from lightweight with lower defense to heavyweight with higher defense. Choose the armor that suits your playstyle (I tend to go light as I prefer a quick and agile build). 

You will see enemies drop items and gear randomly. Don’t be afraid to grab any and all pieces to compare different special effects, because you can always sell unwanted gear later. In this early stage, you will not see many items, but one that can be particularly helpful is Qi Flakes, which, when consumed, give you more Qi for leveling. Gobble up those Qi Flakes!

Player character looking at the Battleflag
Your one-stop shop for all your battlefield needs.

Level Grinding

To take on harder enemies, you will need to level up your character. One run-through of the starting area nets roughly 3100 Qi, which is used to increase your stats (called “virtues”). Every time you increase a virtue, you will gain some HP, as well as the stats associated with that virtue (for example, the Wood Virtue affects HP and Spirit).

This is also a good time to practice and get proficient at parrying, which is an essential skill for tackling tougher foes. Remember, this is a souls-like, and it is meant to be challenging. If you plow straight forward, you’re going to hit a wall. 

Try to practice on the weaker enemies and get a feel for the timing, especially on the stronger unblockable red attacks. When successful, you not only avoid the attack altogether but also leave the foe wide open for a visceral finisher. It’s best not to rely on blocking as it will drain your spirit and eventually leave you stun locked, waiting for your inevitable demise.

In-game menu for leveling up your character.
Which one, which one?


Magic can be used after reaching your first battle flag and leveling up to level 3. You can then acquire spells through the wizardry spell menu. There seems to be no limit to which spells you can receive, provided you meet the required level in the respective skill tree. 

Each magic spell requires fortitude and spirit to perform; lower-level magics, therefore, require less fortitude and spirit; higher-level magics need more, you get the picture. I recommend trying to unlock the Earth Phase spell, Enhanced Defense, and the Wood Phase spell,  Absorb Vitality, to help with tougher fights. Both of these require you to have leveled each virtue to two and three, respectively. 

Look at the magic trees and see which spells suit your playstyle and plan accordingly. Don’t forget to set the spells after acquiring them!

In game menu for acquiring spells and magic
Uhm, I may be in over my head a bit

Taking on Zhang Liang

Disclaimer: While playing the demo version of Wo Long, I experienced a glitch where I was unable to parry during the boss fight. If this happens to you, don’t drive yourself crazy trying to beat him. I recommend shutting the game down and restarting. 

Zhang Liang, the first boss encounter
You don’t look so tough… gulp.

Zhang Liang is the first boss and in true souls-like fashion he is very tough… and he has an even more unforgiving second stage. To make the fight more manageable, follow these suggestions.

Level your character to at least level 10. Zhang Liang can be beaten sooner, but your stats at this level will make it much easier. Try to go into the fight with as much fortitude as possible by battling the weaker enemies leading up to him. It can be tedious, but It will allow you to withstand some of his more brutal attacks without running the risk of being constantly stun-locked. I prefer to use the Sabre as it is fast and allows for quick adjustments.

Be aggressive, to an extent. You will interrupt Zhang’s attacks with yours, using this momentum to keep the pressure on. When you see him glow red, be ready to parry. Landing these parries will leave him open and get his health bar down faster.

After his first health bar reaches zero, a cutscene plays out where Zhang takes some concentrated elixir and turns into a literal monster. This second stage is considerably more difficult. Zhang’s range is insanely longer now, and you cannot interrupt his attacks anymore. During this phase, persistence and patience win the day. 

Attack 2 or 3 times when he is open, then parry or dodge all of his attacks. If you previously equipped any useful magics, now’s the time to let them rip.  When he glows red, be sure to parry just as before. Finally, after his health reaches approximately 25%, you will get the prompt to unleash the Divine Beast by pressing the corresponding button. 

Congrats, you did it. You’ve bested the first stage. Are you sweating?

Are you diving into this masocore action RPG?!? What are your thoughts so far? Were these tips helpful? Let us know in the comments down below!

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