Inside Pulse 12

A Look at Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst (Sony PlayStation 3)

naruto2fbcoverBack in March, I reviewed Ultimate Ninja Storm 3. While I criticized the game a bit, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the heck out of it anyway. At the moment, it has a shot of landing in my top ten of the year. However, I did pretty much everything there was to do with the game, including earning the platinum trophy for it. There was no reason to go back.

Well, it looks like Naruto is the latest fighting franchise to get a re-release less than a year after its initial run. Barely even seven months later, we’re seeing Full Burst, which is a special edition that packs in most of the DLC for the game, as well as a decent amount of new content. It certainly tries its darnedest to get player to come back for one more trek through the Great Ninja War.

The first thing I should mention is that your save file will carry over from UNS3. You don’t have to worry about spending dozens of hours getting back to where you were. However, the install data doesn’t work, so you’ll have to install Full Burst before you can play it. The other good news is that if you already have UNS3, you can actually get all of the Full Burst content as DLC for a mere ten bucks! This will be great for those, like me, who kept their copy of UNS3.

naruto2fb1The first big addition is a bonus story chapter. It’s short, but very interesting indeed. Basically, it involves the Uchiha brothers teaming up to take on a super powered Kabuto in a bid to end his deadly reanimation jutsu. The battle is intense, and the QTE section is absolutely phenomenal. Not only do the button prompts mimic the on screen actions, but the fight scene itself is probably the best in the entire game. Kabuto is no easy out. The fight has two stages, and gets pretty darn tough for the second half. It took me several tries to beat it, and my rating is pathetic. You’ll definitely have to work for this one.

Speaking of Kabuto, his new form is also playable as an additional character in Versus mode. Kabuto is in Sage Mode, which involves him turning into a snake-like humanoid, with an actual snake growing out of his midsection. It’s odd to look at, but not unusual when you know the story behind it. Like every character in UNS3, he was easy to grasp and had plenty of flashy moves. Still, I’m not sure if I’ll be using him over some of my favorites. On top of that, one new character in a game with so many is basically a drop in the bucket. It’s hard to stand out.

That’s not all! A new section has been added to Versus mode. These are one-hundred challenge fights that are basically the kinds of fights you get in the story. Each fight has special conditions and bonus objectives, keeping you on your toes. Some of the special conditions can get quite nasty. For example, one battle drained my life whenever I tried to recharge my chakra. On top of that, the bonus objective tasked me with keeping most of my life bar intact. This pretty much took jutsus out of my repertoire if I wanted to earn the bonus. Winning these battles earns you experience for your ninja tool slots, so you can finally get them up to max level if you finished the story a little short. Completing groups of ten fights unlock images that can be saved as backgrounds for your PS3, which is cool. These missions offer up the bulk of the bonus content added, and are just the kind of thing the game needed to get some more replay value.

naruto2fb2If that weren’t enough, the Full Burst content includes thirty-eight additional costumes for various characters. This adds up to the large majority of the initial DLC and pre-order bonuses. Getting all of what’s offered here would cost you ten bucks as it is, so getting the Full Burst upgrade is basically like getting a season pass. Of course, there’s no benefit to those who already purchased the costumes for the original version. While many of these costumes simply add a hat, there are some more out there ones as well. For example, Naruto can dress up like a Matador and Sasuke has a Napoleon costume. It’s wacky and random, but kind of amusing nonetheless.

If you’re someone who already has UNS3, it’s probably a better idea for you to buy the Full Burst content as DLC. Even if you already have all of the costumes, the bonus chapter, character, and missions are more than worth the ten bucks. If you don’t already have the game, getting Full Burst is the right call. It’s the definitive version of the game, and offers more bang for the buck than the original. It’s also a good deal because the original version will still run you about thirty bucks, so you’re paying only an extra ten bucks for the bonus content, which is the same as if you bought it as DLC.

In the end, the bonus content is more than worth the asking price. If you’ve shelved your copy of UNS3, it’s time to dust it off. If you’ve been holding out on getting the game, Full Burst is the way to go. Now I just got to figure out what to do with copy of the original, seeing as it’s now obsolete.

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