It may be a simple Vita port....but it's sort of decent for a One Piece fanatic
(Spoiler Warning!) Well, well, well, well, well, Ladies and Gentleman…*sighs* I cannot even begin to think about how long it’s been since I've written an article for this site. I've been soooooo busy with summer classes and the college freshman preparation process :P But, that’s enough about me, because this is about One Piece: Unlimited World Red. As you may have already seen Sir Krist’s review for this game, I shall be reviewing its PlayStation Vita port that released not too long ago.
Alright so, as usual, the first thing I’m going to discuss is the Story of the game. Being a simple port (well, it’s a simple port to me :P), not much has changed, and that includes the story. Just like that of the PS3 version, the story of the vita port revolves around a powerful pirate warlock-ish guy named "Red Count" Redfield, who is searching far and wide for power. The Straw Hat Pirates we anime fans all know and love must put a stop to Red’s plans by embarking through uniquely powerful illusions of the crew’s past adventures, reconstructed by Red himself. I can’t argue that it’s an alright story, but with a new game like this, I would have preferred a plot more non-canon than this one. I want something entirely new, rather than just revisiting the Straw Hats’ past as the concept for each level.
Next up on the list is Characters!! I find it pretty nice that playing this game makes me feel like I'm watching an episode of One Piece. I get to be right in the middle of the action, controlling some of my favorite characters in the process. The Straw Hats stay true to their personalities and the developers didn't change them too much, which is good. Sometimes the vibes of One Piece franchise's video games can be really different from the show itself, and that's something I don't really enjoy all that well. In Unlimited World Red, I think they successfully avoid that. The crew; Luffy, Zoro, Nami, Usopp, Sanji, Chopper, Robin, Franky, and Brook all maintain their looks and personalities. In short, the game portrays them just like they are within the anime; this is a game that's perfect specifically for hardcore One Piece fans.
Following the Characters, comes a key element to video games: Gameplay. Now, this was where the game started to lose its pizazz. I tried not to notice because I was all like “No! This is One Piece! Abelard, you love One Piece! Who gives a crap about an extremely repetitive combat system?!” But, believe it or not, I was “merely postponing the inevitable,” quoting Albert Wesker from Resident Evil 5 :P That’s right. UWR’s combat system is similar to that of a Hack n’ Slash, which in this case isn’t very interesting to me at all (Devil May Cry is a different story). There aren’t that many moves to experiment with, and it can get really tedious after a while. Every character his/her own combat set, but even after playing around with them all, I still can’t find any joy in fighting. Nothing changes in that. In addition to the combat system, the process of advancing through the levels of the game also becomes tedious. Nothing new has been introduced to me. All it is is just arriving at your destination, fighting packs of enemies along a linear path, finding a special key (Referred to as "Words") to remove a barrier, using that key to open the barrier, and then finally take on the boss of that stage. Since the start of the game, I've had to repeat that process. To me, that’s obliviously a problem.
Okay, so let's talk about the games Graphics/Aesthetics of the game. I'm proud to say that the game looks no different from the PS3 counterpart, which is obviously good :P Sometimes, I like to cross-play this game on my own PS3 system and I don't even notice a contradiction. So, I definitely believe that the game's graphics are maintained. On the other hand, the way the game LOOKS is pretty neat. It takes on a sort of cel shaded-like environment in which the developers seem to experiment a lot with primarily bright colors. In combination with proper lighting, the aesthetics result as a brilliant playing field for the gamer.
The last thing I want to talk about is the game's newly introduced Colosseum Mode. Personally, I think that this is the only mode in which the game's combat system can look superb. Featuring 20 playable characters, Colosseum Mode is a special mode where your team can fight it out in an all out tournament of the best! Players can have one on one fights (Duel), free for all fights with up to 4 players (Battle-Royale), survival against all the game's bosses consecutively (Boss Rush), and unleash hell upon swarms of enemies (Chaos Battle). This 4 in one game mode really does put every player's strength to the test, and I think that it's the most exciting over everything else. If somebody asked about what hooked me to this game, I'd tell them all about Colosseum Mode.
Well, peeps, that's just about everything I have to say about this game. Unfortunately, I can't give it more than a solid 59%. It has really great qualities, but then again, it has some bad ones too. Fuss or not, I believe it's a pretty reasonable score :3 You, angry?....pfft I hope not :P Anyway, guys, I'm glad to be back writing for this site. I've been away for quite some time, so it's pretty refreshing to publish something again :D
One Piece: Unlimited World Red was reviewed using a hard PS Vita copy. One Piece Unlimited World Red is now available for 3DS, WiiU, PS3, and PS Vita.