Wednesday, August 5, 2015

One Piece Unlimited World Red Review (PS Vita)

'One Piece UWR' a perfect game for franchise fans
Written by Drei Medina


[SPOILER ALERT]
This game review may contain minor to major story spoilers. Read at your own risk smile emoticon

“Gomu gomu no.. RED HAWK!”
One Piece fans are up for an exciting treat with the newest game installment of One Piece Unlimited World Red in the PS Vita roster.
The game features Patrick Redfield a.k.a. the Red Count as the main antagonist who was personally designed by One Piece mangaka Eichiro Oda.
Redfield or Red is a notorious level 6 Impel Down escapee whose name was once spoken in the same breadth as Legendary pirate Edward “Whitebeard” Newgate and the late Pirate King Gol D. Roger.
He wreaks havok among the lines of marines and pirates alike as he attempts to take the title of Pirate King at all costs.
One Piece UWR's story is not part of the original manga yet the way the game's plot unraveled revealed its consistency with the One Piece universe.
This is perhaps due to the masterful direction of Oda who had a personal hand in creating the game and its story.
Playing the game seems like a flashback of sorts for fans since the chapters in the main story feature past locations and enemies from the manga.
Fans will be delighted to see how some former foes such as Wapol (Drum Island), Eneru (Sky Piea) and Rob Lucci (Ennies Lobby) measure against the powered up Strawhat Pirates after the two-year time skip.
There will also be a chance to battle Marine heavies like Admirals Aokiji, Kizaru and ultimately Akainu in a bid to exact Luffy's revenge for the death of his brother Portgas D. Ace during the Battle of Marineford.

Gameplay and graphics
Game-wise, One Piece UWR feels like Ragnarok Odyssey Ace, looks like Gravity Rush and plays like a Dynasty Warriors beat 'em up.
It's pretty much a straightforward game where you have to pummel groups of grunts in each level before you battle the boss. Rinse and repeat til you reach the final boss battle.
There are also side quests in the tavern where you could level up and obtain items that allow you to strengthen your crew.
Aside from this, the fishing and bug catching mini games give the gameplay a fun flavor since they act out as rhythm games where you could get crafting items.
Still, I couldn't say if it's more of a Monster Hunter genre or a beat 'em up. I guess it personally feels more of the latter to me but the gameplay is pretty much a mix of both.
For its aesthetics, the game boasts gorgeous graphics that enhance gameplay and breathe life into the One Piece characters.

Trophies and problems
Trophy hunters meanwhile will have their hands full since it takes at least 50 hours (rough estimate) to platinum the game.
Casual players on the other hand may be disappointed due to the short story and coliseum modes which take around 10 hours to complete.
Although One Piece UWR is a pretty game inside-out it still has its flaws. For one it obviously lacks an online multiplayer and PVP mode which could have increased its replay value.
Other problems include a limited variation of combo attacks that makes the experience repetitive if you keep on using the same character.
It's also annoying that you have to keep on pressing start to get a glimpse of the map. I personally think there should have been a mini map option to make things a bit convenient.
Still, these problems were not enough to deter me from loving the game as it expands the already wild and whacky One Piece universe.

The verdict: 8.5/10 [great game]

Overall, One Piece UWR is a great mix of the Monster Hunter and beat 'em up genres which will entail hours of amusing action enhanced by gorgeous anime graphics and a unique story.
The game is set to endear fans further to the One Piece franchise and is a perfect way to relive past arcs from the anime and manga. A must-play for fans!

Pros:
+ Gorgeous graphics
+ Faithful to anime & manga
+ Features wide array of anime's arcs
Cons:
- Too short for casual players
- Limited and repetitive combat system
- No online multiplayer or PVP system