Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Now Playing: One Piece - Pirate Warriors 3

 What Ken's Rage 2 should've been.
 Unlike other shonen manga/anime properties, like Dragon Ball, Bleach or Naruto, One Piece's videogame record has been pretty decent. There were a few average games like Unlimited World Red or Gear Spirit, but you also had the fantastic Grand Battle series, and the underrated Unlimited Cruise. For whatever reason, I hadn't had the chance to dabble into the Pirate Warriors franchise yet, and boy am I pleasantly surprised.

 Firstly, aesthetically, the game is beautiful and runs at least as well as Dynasty Warriors 8. Character Models are gorgeous and animate beautifully, and the bright, colorful direction they went suits the world of One Piece to a tee and makes it a very appealing game.

 As far as gameplay goes, it's rather fun, as Dynasty Warriors games tend to be, although it seems like the character movesets are rather... small? Maybe I need to level them up a bit more(I've cleared the entire first episode already, and Zoro hit level 15) in order to unlock more moves? Hopefully. I mean, I can do with the amount of moves given, but I think Samurai Warriors 4 spoiled me a bit.

 The last thing I think is worth mentioning, and which I find rather interesting, is that this game feels a lot like Ken's Rage 2, if they had gotten it right. The Story Mode is filled with those nasty manga panel-like cutscenes, but, BUT, for whatever reason, this time they look GOOD. I think the cartoony art-direction makes it avoid the 'Garry's Incident'... incidental feel the realistic looking models from Ken's Rage 2 produced, plus, this time around I can press X as soon as I've read the dialogue and get right into the next line. It doesn't waste my time. And even then, I think in these... 8-9 stages, I've already seen more cutscenes than in the entirety of Ken's Rage 2, and I wish I was kidding about that. Killing many enemies with your Musou Attacks freezes the screen for a few seconds just as it would happen in Ken's Rage 1, which they removed in 2, something I felt subtracted to the whole experience. Funnily enough, these freeze-frames don't really fit the world of One Piece as it did Hokuto no Ken, but man is it satisfying seeing all the havoc you just caused!

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