Publisher: Namco Bandai
Developer: Tecmo Koei
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What they say: Sail again with the Straw Hat Crew in One Piece Pirate Warriors 2, exclusively for the PlayStation 3! After two years of training and gaining new skills, the Straw Hat Crew is back and better than ever as Luffy continues his quest to become the Pirate King! Luffy and his crew will appear with their New World outfits and all new attacks to take down hordes of Pirates and Marines that will flood the screen. Immerse yourself by playing the “New World” with your favorite characters and their latest techniques and costumes.
What I say: One Piece is quite an entertainment juggernaut. Manga, anime, movies and of course video games. If you are a fan of the series you definitely have options to fully explore Oda’s richly developed world. The most recent video game title, Pirate Warriors 2, does not follow the main series storylines like the first Pirate Warriors did. This game serves as a “Dream Story” that was written just for this game. Taking place during the New World time period the characters feature new moves and their New World costumes. The story involves most of the crew going rogue after being exposed to an odd purple gas. So Luffy and Nami have to defeat their friends in order in free them. Add in Smoker and the Marines and Luffy as their prisoner (and unwilling partner) and you have an entertaining story that moves things along quite nicely.
The game is structured pretty much the same as the Dynasty Warriors games. Basically beat up a ton of dudes (including the various bad guys from across One Piece history) and complete objectives, rinse, repeat. The driving force in these games is playing as your fave One Piece characters. The bulk of the game is set in the Pirate Log, as this mode is where all of your story missions are. Also of note are the crew missions which unlock as you encounter and free them in the main game. These crew missions enable you to upgrade and use these characters as your assistants in the story missions. There is also a challenge mode which basically features Boss battles. In each mission your get Beli (the One Piece currency). This can be used to buy galleries, consumable items, as well as story videos and so on. If you are a completionist this area will keep you quite busy and motivated to keep going.
The new story helps with alleviating part of the repetitive nature of the game. The story is fun and lends itself to this game type well. Presentation wise it does a great job of putting forth Oda’s designs. It looks just like an One Piece episode. There is always a ton going on at any given time with up to 100 attackers at a time and the game does just fine with no slowdown or anything else. On the downside is that fact that there is only Japanese audio. This normally wouldn’t be a problem but the subtitles are bad, I mean hardcore engrish bad at times. You can still follow what’s going on but man does it throw you occasionally. But being as that’s the only gripe I have that’s not so bad right?
With lots to do and unlock, One Piece: Pirate Warriors 2 is well worth the purchase and it will certainly occupy you for a good while. And if you are a fan you will be especially happy with the presentation, just be ready for those wacky subtitles.
One Piece: Pirate Warriors 2 is only available as a digital download on PSN.