Naruto has a lot of history in both its manga and anime but also a consistent stream of video game releases. Those who have been invested from the beginning will be happy to know that Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 is one of the most visually stunning games I’ve ever seen as well as one with a ton of content and options.
The story modes sees the fourth Great Ninja War break out. Madara Uchiha has waged war against the hidden villages of the shinobi nations. Working together, the nations of the Land of Lightning, Water, Wind, Earth, and Fire form the Allied Shinobi Forces to defeat Madara Uchiha. I’ll be open and say that this is the first exposure of Naruto I’ve ever had and was honestly quite apprehensive about reviewing the title but developer Cyberconnect 2 has done an incredible job in the story mode to create a gripping narrative that is enjoyable by long-time fans as well as those completely new to the world of Naruto Shippuden. There are branching paths offering replay value as well as mob battles that change the pacing of the battle and gives it some variety overall.
The story is surprisingly enjoyable with plenty to play. Each chapter features cut-scenes delivered as still from the anime that look surprisingly nice and its honestly very hard to not be consistently impressive by what’s on show. That visually impressive nature continues throughout the gameplay itself.
The game is a 3D fighter that is rather simple in its mechanics. It’s accessibility doesn’t hold back the enjoyment as a large roster of characters and flashy visuals keep the play fun. There are enough intricacies to the battle that continuously keeps each fight feeling fresh enough. It can look like absolute mayhem at times and so long as you are aware of what’s happening, it’s simply a treat.
The most impressive aspect of Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 though is the content. From characters to modes, there are a ton of things to do. After the six hour Story Mode Is complete, there is Adventure Mode. This takes place after the story and allows you to explore areas as well as gain new abilities and progress. It’s fun, deep, and adds more options to how to play the game.
Even if that wasn’t enough there are a number of battle modes including survival and tournaments if you just want to fight and learn a characters moves. There are surprising number of options available in this mode alone. When all that’s not enough the game features an online battle mode to takes your skills online but unfortunately in my experience, the online component wasn’t perfect with performance issues.
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 is one of the most complete fighting titles I’ve ever seen. While the complexity of the fighting mechanics is lacking, the sheer content, enjoyable combat and stunning visuals easily makes up for it. What’s most impressive is that the story is built in way to understand if you’re new to the series as well as retelling the final arc of the anime for fans.