"Full Burst Mode"
For those gamers who follow the Naruto series regularly, The Ultimate Ninja Storm series has been known as the most visually faithful game adaptation this generation. The Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm series spans four games with the most recent, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, launching earlier this March. Having been released just six months after Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst doesn't add much new to the experience.
Full Burst is a slight upgrade to NSUNS3, adding a new character (Sage Kabuto), new challenge missions, 38 DLC costumes from the original game, an additional chapter to the story mode, upgrades to the story mode cinematics, as well as a launch on Steam for PC.
If you haven't followed the Naruto series, Naruto is a Ninja from the Hidden Village of the Fire Country with a demon fox sealed within him. He is born an outcast but gradually, throughout the series, grows stronger and gains friends through his idealism and tenacity. The game adventure story mode starts off with the attack of the demon fox and explains how the demon fox was sealed inside Naruto when he was born. The story then jumps to the five kage summit running through the end of the Fourth Great Ninja War.
The game mostly follows the canon story of the Naruto series but allows players to deviate based on choices (such as asking Minato whether he wants to go fight the masked man or go defend against the demon fox) which slightly alter the outcome of the game story and the enemies you face in battle. The story mode plays out with short dialogue scenes acting as exposition to set up each battle. Outside of battle, players control Naruto running from one screen to the next JRPG style. Although the Ultimate Ninja Storm series adventure mode has been streamlined over the past few games, epic cinematic boss battles do make a return in Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst.
Full Burst success is due in large part to the accessibility of the battle system. Its combo system is simple, forgiving, and visually gratifying. Players fight in one-on-one third-person perspective battles. Each player also gets the choice of two additional assist characters. The four face buttons of the controller, in addition to the directional joystick, chain combos, while the directional pad allows players to throw out items mid battle. Each character has a few cinematic super attacks, and when your health is low, a comeback system or "awakening" can be activated as a last resort. Newly introduced are ring outs (which automatically end the round), new team attacks, and the inclusion of health bars for assist characters (being able to permanently kill an assist for the match). Even though the gameplay is visually pleasing and the combat system is simple to learn, the lack of depth hurts replay value, and you may find yourself bored with the game soon after running through the roster of playable characters. In respect to the battle system, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst lacks the depth of Naruto Clash of Ninja and Rise of a Ninja series, and it may turn off hardcore fighting game audiences.
Full Burst also offers versus mode, online play, customizable player cards, and a roster of over 80 characters. Having played every game in the series makes playing this game's story mode and even its March predecessor's story mode a chore. The story seems to retread what has been previously explored in previous iterations, and NSUNS3 players need not apply. The versus mode is good for a few laughs when playing with friends, but don't expect fights to be fair. The roster is severely imbalanced to match the strength levels of characters in the series' canon, and distinction between character abilities wane with character popularity.
If you're new to the Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm series, then Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst offers a full comprehensive version of UNS3. If you've played that game or any of the past few iterations, then you can expect more of the same and be prepared to run through the story mode once again.
GameDynamo's Score for Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst (PS3)
Mild mannered office worker by trade, entertainment writer by passion. David has enjoyed games of all genres since the original Famicom. He hopes to continue contributing to the growth of the gaming industry through his writing.
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