The first thing you'll notice about this game is that the graphics are amazing! The Ultimate Ninja Storm series has always been the most dazzling Naruto game on the market, and this one’s no exception. The cel-shaded graphics and fluid movement continue to blur the line between video games and anime. The second thing you'll notice is the whooping character roster! A full 70+ playable characters and 15 support characters! If there's a fighting game with more playable characters, I can't think of it.
The gameplay is everything you’ve come to love about the series. Fast-paced battles full of intense combos, over-the-top super moves and the trademark of this fighting engine—substitutions. Speaking of turning into a log when someone hits you, substitutions are no longer tied to chakra—they have their own bar. You start out with four, then the bar slowly recharges. This is a major improvement to the battle system and should slow down abuse of this mechanism.
One fairly big change to the combat system is the ability to chain combos together by chakra dashing mid-combo and switching to a different one. If your opponent is unable to break your attacks, you can seriously rack up the combos.
And for fans of the anime, there are a ton of new animations in this game! Over an hour according to the Namco Bandai rep, and some of it was absolutely mind-blowing. Seeing the epic fight between Madara and Hashirama Senju certainly tickled my inner fanboy. And it was really long—a full 5+ minutes of animation courtesy of Studio Pierrot.
Gamers should be pleased with the bevy of modes in the game. You can fight one-on-one without teammates in the Single Battle, or bring two support characters in for a Team Match. There’s a survival mode where you fight waves of foes with just one health bar. And you can set up 8-player tournaments locally and online. You can also record your matches and upload them to the server for others to watch. And since players are ranked globally, you can watch matches of high-ranked players to see their strategies.
There’s also some crossover with the Naruto Collectible Card Game. In the Custom Battle Mode, you fight other gamers with their own Ninja Info Card. Each card has an element (Fire, Wind, Water, Lightning, Earth), and whoever has the winning element gets the bonus listed on the card during the battle. Each copy of the game will have a card inside, but different retailers have different cards.
Like the other Ninja Storm games, what makes this one great is it’s easy to tell the people working on it love Naruto. That kind of love permeates everything throughout the game from the 70+ character roster, all the way down to the tiniest details. I’ve always considered this series the Cadillac of Naruto video games, and this year’s model is looking good. The game launches March 13, 2012, and demos should be hitting PSN and Xbox 360 later this month.
For more info about this game, click here!
NARUTO SHIPPUDEN™:Ultimate Ninja STORM Generations™
game software © 2004-2012 NAMCO BANDAI Games Inc. All Rights Reserved.
NAMCO BANDAI Games logo is a trademark of NAMCO BANDAI.
NARUTO artwork and elements © 2002 MASASHI KISHIMOTO / 2007 SHIPPUDEN All Rights Reserved.
by Urian Brown