NARUTO™: Ultimate Ninja® STORM
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Review: NARUTO™: Ultimate Ninja® STORM
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Naruto: Ultimate Ninja STORM is here to engross us entirely in the world of anime. Its graphics stay true to original Manga fashion, but the battle scenes take it to a whole new level of spectacular, with the introduction of 3D immersion.
The graphics on Ultimate Ninja are cel-shaded and maintain the anime feel that you might be used to. The graphics rest at 30 FPS, meaning even the ultimate ‘jutsus’ which are essentially super-moves don’t slow down your console. Ultimate Ninja encompasses a more expansive map, and you’ll be happy that the scenery never remains the same. The most significant break from previous games is the fact that you can now play in a 3D environment.
In this version, you can play one-on-one, either against AI or an actual opponent, or you can create teams and battle it out, with every signature move from past instalments such as jutsus, sharingans and rasengans. The plot has effectively been woven into the first 135 episodes of the anime as a single playable storyline.
The fighting is primarily combo-based, and pulling a jutsu is the ultimate fight move. There are 25 characters who you can play as in the game, and all of them can pull a jutsu, with the same action combinations. This makes the game easy to play as any character. Your health meter can be filled at any time by pressing down a button.
The Strom Gauge is an ultimate power-up which lets players refill their chakra instantly when they land a combination of unblocked combos on the opponent, and also improves their attributes. Characters can also assign a support ninja who can come into battle before a cooldown period.
There isn’t a steep learning curve for Ultimate Ninja, made possible by the fact that all the character moves have similar action buttons. This also makes the unique combos of each character easily attainable, and you won’t feel like you have to read a manual to go through the dozens of characters you can control throughout the game. You can also perform select jutsus and ultimate jutsus by flicking the left analog button and then simply pressing the attack button.
Replay Value: 4.5
The combat in Ultimate Ninja is exhilarating. You might end up replaying this game simply to master a jutsu. It also forces you to learn most of the moves that each player can do which itself makes the game semi-addictive. I like that this game stays true to the anime model, and the fact that it incorporates 3D play and a huge variety of playable characters means that this is the only game I’ll be coming back to if I want a dose of Japanese nostalgia.
The introduction of 3D gaming to Naruto makes this game stand out. The graphics environment are unique, and you will experience the true world of Manga in every fight, move or scene. Matches in multiplayer can be quite the drag, and you’ll prefer to stick to the single-player mode, but this ultimately suffices. The character transformations are brilliant, and you’ll keep coming back for more.
Ultimate Ninja is a definite go-to if you need a fighting game that completely engrosses you.
Replay Value 4.5
Sticks to true anime graphics.
Fight scenes are epic.
Missing the Land of Waves prologue.
Multiplayer is lackluster.