Review by TakaRagranok
"I Grow Bored of Your Face!" (Warning, Spoilers...)
Ah, Bleach. A good anime, a good investment of money for manga. Is this game worth the $50, though? Read on and find out my view! (Be prepared for corniness to it's fullest in here!)
Control: 6 Functioning Zanpaku-to (did I spell that right?) out of 10.
This score is really more of a score of X/10, with X being the amount of space you have to play in sq. ft. divided by 2, kinda. In rooms that are kinda cluttered (such as dorm rooms or like my own bedroom, 12.5ft X 13ft), you're gonna have issues with control. Why? Censor bar placement. You need at least 3 feet of distance between the end of your remote and the censor bar whenever you play Wii, and this is no different. You might wanna stand about 6ft back if possible because you tend to move close to the TV during fights, if you get into it. Seriously, though, you need to have open space in front of your TV. So, this isn't as big of a score as normal.
Music/Backdrops: I give this about 7 Kido Blasts out of 10: Some of the music is pretty good, but you see too many of the same locales over and over again. You can get some of the tracks unlocked by purchasing CDs from the Urahara Shop to boost this score a bit. This loses so many points because you only unlock 2 stages, the Central 46/Ice Haven and the Broken Seal stage (where you fight Arturo).
Story: 5 Flash Steps out of 10: Really, the initial storyline with Ichigo is alright, then with Hitsuguya, and then with Arturo and Youruichi, but really.....it's not amazing. In short, the character you control needs to gain the Sokyoku shards for X reason. After around 10 battles, you're done with the story and you rack up 15k in the in-game currency. You also unlock a handful of characters this way, but you don't get the bulk of them. The main lure here is Arturo Plateado, the game's big bad villain. He's about the coolest villain I've seen in a while now, and it is refreshing to see someone who has the look of a fallen angel now and again. Nothing amazing or groundbreaking here, though.
Gameplay: This can either be really high or really low, depending on your tastes and preferences. Each character handles just a bit differently (with different Special Attacks and such), but have enough of a binding thread to make each one feel a bit familiar. Shaking the Nunchuk to fill your Bankai gauge isn't really that useful unless it's right before a match, or if there's a lot of distance between you and the enemy. This really fits hand in hand with control, so it gets about 7 souls outta 10.
Number of Characters/Character Unlocking System: 9 shinigami out of 10. Jeez, you have a huge selection from the show, plus Arturo, a Shattered Blade exclusive Character. My estimate without counting: I arrive at around 35+ characters. Why only a 9? Because you get NONE from the shop. You have to unlock almost all of them from Arcade mode, and there's a huge string you need to do in order to get all of them. About 5% you unlock from completing Episode mode. The money piles up, and without a constant stream of new content available, you get rich quick.
Voices/Techniques: Quite frankly, this is where I get my title from (and with the help of one of the other reviewers who used the "fading" quote). It gets annoying to have to hear the same voice quotes over and over again. Attacks get repetitive and spammable (such as Arturo's Bankai Cinema....dang, I love that guy!), so you lose interest in soloing. On the plus side, the voice actors aren't too bad (you can't tell the difference anywhere NEAR as much as a certain ninja fighting game....coughClashofNinjacoughsneeze), and Arturo's accent makes him a total bad***. 5 Zakura petals out of 10 (once again, did I spell that right?).
In the end, we have a great new fighting game for the Wii that actually works well. For the single player aspect of it (for which this review was written), it isn't that amazing. In the lonely gamer's case, you may grow bored of the characters faces, so go out and make some friends! It will make all the difference in the world, cuz I know that multiplayer will make this game shine. Too bad Nintendo couldn't have given us WiFi multiplayer. Oh well. 7 Hollows-gone-Soul Reaper esque (I'm looking at you, Arturo...yes, and Grimmjow and Ulquiorra, you too) out of 10.
I hope that you have a great time playing this game. Be on the lookout, as I may post an Arturo Plateado character guide sometime soon!
Rating: 3.5 - Good
Product Release: Bleach: Shattered Blade (US, 10/09/07)
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