Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 is
the fourth instalment in the Ultimate Ninja Storm series. Based on the
popular manga series, Naruto. The current instalment has gone back to
the formula of the first two, moving away from what was done with
Generations. Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 begins the story from the
Nine-Tailed Fox attack to Konohagakure (The Hidden Leaf). Then follows
the story of the manga series. The story follows a number of different
characters from the series. Newcomers to the series will have a very
difficult time following all the characters and terms that are thrown
around without explanation. This was likely a purposeful decision as
fans of the series may find these explanations very tedious.
story itself is very solid, with a very interesting overarching story.
The issue is the way that this is told. The cut scenes are long and
lack any real impact. The conversations are long and drawn out and are
all shown using static shots. The cut scenes are also very frequent
with the fights seeming very far apart. The voice acting is not up to
par either, the English actors from the manga are used but the dubbing
just seems off. There is the Japanese voice work available for the
diehard fans. I had a hard time maintaining interest in the cut scenes
in Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, sitting through these felt like a chore.
Compared with previous instalments this felt like a massive back step.
fighting has not changed since Generations, nothing noticeable anyway.
The fights will follow a simple formula and once you have this worked
out the fights become incredibly easy. There is little in the way of a
tutorial for the fighting, I would have liked to have seen some sort of
tutorial, even an optional one would have been beneficial for newcomers.
The opening battle against the nine-tails was brilliant; this has you
jumping across rooftops in an epic battle, then it drops off
dramatically from there and returns to usual fighting. The fights
themselves do look spectacular with characters having unique attacks and
specials. The fighting is very much style over substance.
between all the cut scenes and fights you are able to walk around the
world. This is unfortunately very restricted and there is little other
than a small path and some nice looking artwork. There are the
occasional side quests that you can do around these environments, these
seem very unimportant and there is really lack of any sort of reward for
doing so. One very minor issue I had was when entering a new area it
could be a bit confusing where you had come from and where you needed to
go, causing me to go back to the previous area a number of times. This
wouldn’t be so bad but the loading times were a bit long and frequent.
This part of the game feels very outdated, it felt just like the
environments from Final Fantasy X, it all looked wonderful but was
essentially just a fancy corridor.
Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 feels like a major step back for the
series. The story itself is fantastic, the method in which it is told
is just lacking. There is overall a lack of innovation from previous
installations and is a bit stagnant at this point in time. The most
hardcore fans may be able to sit through the story, it was very static
and was just watching people talk and have the odd fight every now and
again. This is an instalment for the fans who love everything Naruto –
others will have a hard time sticking this one out.