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Naruto Powerful Shippuden Review

Naruto Powerful Shippuden Review

Back in the days of the GameBoy Advance, there was a series called Naruto Ninja Council. It was a bit of a hidden gem, but there were those of us who spent countless hours playing as my favorite ninja in orange. Later titles focused on a mission-based structure, since it made picking the game up and setting it down very easy. Naruto Powerful Shippuden takes this formula, but instead of giving you the same story you have been replaying/watching/reading over the years, it mixes things up a lot. This is because Powerful Shippuden is actually a game for not only Naruto Shippuden, but more importantly a Naruto spin-off call Rock Lee and His Ninja Pals.

You will play as Naruto and Rock Lee, but this time they and everyone else in the Naruto universe are all turned chibi. Chibi means that characters are super-deformed and have tiny bodies, supporting their large cartoony heads.

When playing as Naruto you will still be going from the start of Shippuden all the way up to getting to the waterfall of truth. This seems like a lot, but Powerful Shippuden actually is a parody of all of these events. These stories hop all over the place and the focus is clearly on gameplay over everything else.

This doesn't mean the bits of story are a waste though as this is actually one of the best written Naruto games in terms of comedy. The events that happen before each story mission are filled with fourth wall breaking conversations and other crazy antics that blend the main show's story with the spin-offs crazy nature. For example a serious talk about ideals and evil schemes, will now be replaced with talks of cross dressing or even building amusement parks.

The Rock Lee story follows the same as Naruto, but obviously with a heavier focus on Rock Lee's squad. This is not a way you want to experience the Naruto story for the first time, (that is what the Ultimate Ninja Storm series is for) for fans of the series, or even funny writing, it is hard not to chuckle at each scene. These are text-only scenes though, but the wacky character designs, music, and sound effects more than make up for the lack of voice acting.

As stated before, Powerful Shippuden is all about the mission based gameplay and boy does this game get it right. It plays as a single player 2D sidescrolling game and the controls are simple, but deep enough to have you mixing up combat. You can use a weak attack, strong attack, jump, dash, guard, jutsu, and call for support. The bottom screen is used to go into a powered-up state, use a jutsu or call for support if you don't feel like pressing buttons. The array of options is wide enough that you won't be able to just spam a certain combo or move the whole game.

You will have to use these skills in the different missions you will have to complete throughout the game. The variety in mission structure is nice because it rarely forces you to do a single mission. Your mission map branches out a lot and will have you picking a mission that you want instead of the game forcing you. Also you will switch between playing as Naurto and Rock Lee a lot thought your playthrough. At certain points on the mission map, you will need to have a certain amount of keys for both characters and the only way to get these keys are by completing missions. This keeps you from just getting burnt out by simply playing as one character and lets you mix things up.

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