Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 | Review
Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 is the 4th title in a series of Naruto fighters presented by CyberConnect 2. It is accurate to call their Ultimate Ninja Storm series more-so an interactive anime rather than a fighter; which is a complement to CyberConnect 2 fan service efforts. As you can expect, you follow Naruto Uzumaki’s faithful adventure to restore his best friend, Saske Uchiha, back to his former peaceful alliance. Saske’s heart is coveted in a saturated darkness that materialized from the slaughter of his Uchiha clan; Itachi, Saske’s blood brother, refers to him as a “blank canvas”. Saske is out to destroy his home village, Hidden Leaf, which has ironically caused rival factions amongst the five “Kages” (Kah-Gae) to bond at a summit conference to destroy Saske and his puppeteer Marada. Naruto has several revelations about his fate as a Jinchuriki (keeper of 9 Tailed Beasts); a power he must tap into to save his forsaken ninja world. This chronicle is convoluted yet simultaneously interesting; try not to get lost. The deep backstory was something I found very attractive yet unfulfilling hence my lack of thoroughly exploring previous Ultimate Ninja Storm games.
In beginning UNS3 you’re given a very limited selection of playable characters. Before entering versus or any online modes I highly recommend you visit Ultimate Adventure. UNS3 sports a limited free roaming adventure composed with plenty main plot sequences but can feel hallow at times. Upon completion of the main adventure you can embark on side missions but furthermore complete Naruto’s Ninja World Timeline adorned with more fights.
Ultimate Adventure proves these shinobis have a passionate legacy; UNS3 recites this history while remaining hand in hand with the anime. The amount of substance Naruto’s supporting cast holds is really surprising; the game does a great job of making you want to learn more about their individual stories. With that said, ultimate adventure however isn’t much of an adventure. The roaming aspect is very bland with very few folks to interact with and unentertaining side missions. The environments don’t offer much beyond a few random item and currency pick-ups.
Shell shaded character models put this title on par with its anime counterpart and is almost scene for scene correct in its storytelling. UNS3s strong points lie in the fun fast paced fighting system that is easy to get into but has depth. There is one primary attack button (Circle on PS3 B if Xbox) that starts basic combos, you can reinvent your combos by adding in chakra-assisted variations and support attacks. On defense you’re given substitution jutsus, which are your most reliable source of evading devastating combos. Usage of substitutions should be savored because it will likely dictate a match’s result. Another aspect of the game’s fighting system is the leveling system of exclusive item palets that split between Legend and Hero. Items in battle consist of Bentos that enhance your fight capabilities and various kunais. In the adventure mode Legend And Hero also have some minor variations in how you handle boss fights, with Legend being most difficult.
I’ve played the previous two ninja storms mildly so I can’t make reference to how this game compares however the battle system can become a bit of a chess match depending on how you force your opponent to defend.
Naruto Shippuden: UNS3 is a better way to experience this series if you perhaps didn’t have the time or patience to watch the show on your own time. This arc of Shippuden is a bloated stretch of well over 100 episodes and may not even be available in English just yet. Although the campaign may seem saturated with cutscenes and talking, Naruto loyalist will appreciate its accuracy. Raging chakra and justu engulfed fights between dialog progresses your time spent completing the campaign. UNS3 contains online competitive modes that’ll give it longevity especially if you have some friends ready to throw down. You can also compete for bragging rights in ranked matches if you’re a loner. It was hard to not enjoy Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, however my time with the game on-ward is questionable. One thing’s for certain, after playing this title I have become a fan of the Naruto anime.
Dual Pixels Awards Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 a 7/10