Review by Doodle_Boy
"Button mashing at its worst, a disgrace to One Piece fans looking for true adventure."
To start this off, I am a HUGE One Piece fan. I love all the episodes, manga chapters, and majority of the games. This is not one of them. In this review, you will see why the game fails to meet expectations.
First things first, the gameplay. It is a hack n' slash beat-em-up game that is created by Tecmo Koei, the creators of games like Warriors Orochi 3 or Dynasty Warriors. If you like their games, or any games in the genre in particular, then this should not come as a surprise that the game is good. It does what it needs to do, and that's beat people up. Those not a fan of beat-em-ups but are One Piece fans may still want to try this out though. So here is a mini-detailed description of how the game plays:
You play as the Straw Hat Pirates and several of allies. You fight enemies from numerous parts of the game and may even appreciate the roster of enemies you can fight, as well as the fact how their moves are not just clones of other characters. However, if you are looking for trophies, or if you are a completionist, you will not enjoy how 80% of the time you are playing the same 5 levels per character. This is not a fun experience if you do not enjoy spending 15 plus minutes doing the same thing over and over again.
Another problem which has been reported about by many people is the constant freezing or mess ups of certain moves. For example, the button you pressed triggered something different or the game froze during mid-combat. If you don't have the patience for this, that will be a problem.
Pirate-like music can be a bore, and it does not seem to compare to the likes of Unlimited Adventure or Unlimited Cruise, both amazing One Piece games. Not much to be said here, it's more of a "hate it or like it" type of soundtrack.
The graphics look really similar to the anime, but there is room for improvement. Other anime series like Bleach, Dragon Ball Z, and Naruto have slightly finer graphics for their games on the ps3 console. Still, most people may enjoy the graphics as it is a much bigger improvement than the ones seen in the Unlimited games for the wii.
Plot (Spoiler Free)
The plot is where the game fails. Taken directly from the manga series with no fillers added, the game tries to do what it could. Tries. It is missing key elements from key sagas of the manga and while the game advertised the ability to play the New World saga, you would be dissapointed that only a minor element from that saga is playable. In the manga, it was less than a chapter long. If you were looking to play the major segments of the New World arc, that is a loss.
Another loss is the enemies. While many of the enemies included are fan favorites, others are missing from key sagas like Alabasta, Enies Lobby, and Whitebeard War. Removing secondary antagonists may not matter to the average fan, but for hardcore fans those are a lot of enemies removed and gameplay elements taken out.
While the plot was a shame, the appeal puts this game to the grave.
There are really only 2 buttons you need in this game, with 3 more to help you. Square, Square, Square, Triangle. Triangle, Triangle, Triangle. Expect these a lot as they are the strongest combos in the game. Trying to do other combos aren't as effective, since they only attack one person. If you attempt them in a boss battle, you will be hit first or they will dodge. The game is basically forcing you to spam combos. Not something you will enjoy. Doing this for 20 plus hours puts the nail to the coffin.
Most critics say that in order to truly enjoy the game, you need to be a fan if the series. I beg to differ. In order to truly enjoy the game, you need to be a fan of Dynasty Warriors or Warriors Orochi. If not, a One Piece fan won't enjoy button mashing and the story skipping chapters and enemy fights repeatedly. If you are not a fan of either, stay away from this game. It will make you hate the genre even more. If you are looking for a hack n' slash or beat-em-up for your ps3, try God of War or Devil May Cry. Collections have been made for the games providing a platinum trophy for each game you beat making trophy hunters rejoice. This game, unfortunately, requires constant level grinding to unlock items and skill coins for your characters. Trophy hunters will be ashamed that one of the gold trophies is unobtainable in the NA and EU regions, making most of that level grinding pointless. Finally, one of the gold trophies requires you to kill 100,000 enemies. You may not enjoy going past 50,000. That is, if you make it that far.
All in all, the game has its flaws for One Piece fans, and may want to stick to the games for the wii. If you were hoping to play a good One Piece game for the ps3, this wins by default, as there are no other other One Piece games for the console. So all One Piece fans, if you hate button mashing, stay away from this game, and feel free to thank me later.
Reviewer's Score: 4/10 | Originally Posted: 10/19/12
Game Release: One Piece: Pirate Warriors (US, 09/25/12)
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