hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations

Review: Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations

5:00 PM on 05.03.2012 // Ian Bonds

The Naruto series of games is another in a long line of fighting titles based on a popular anime series. What seems to set this series apart from the others, however, is its focus on a pick-up-and-play attitude. While many games will focus on a series' storied history (or just its story) Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations aims to streamline everything so the focus is on the gameplay itself.

This is both a good thing and a bad thing.

Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations (PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 [reviewed])
Developer: CyberConnect2
Publisher: Namco Bandai Games
Released: March 13, 2012
MSRP: $59.99

What most folk will notice with this title is that, in story mode, it completely abandons the trope of exploring a hub world, RPG-style, looking for fights along the familiar locales of the series it's based on. Instead, players simply choose from three characters (two versions of Naruto -- older and younger -- plus Sasuke Uchiha, with more characters unlocked through gameplay) and fight through their storylines. The stories themselves are told through minimal cut scenes and single-panel art with voiceover. It's an interesting, albeit minimalist approach to convey a huge amount of story in a short amount of time, allowing players to get right into the action with as little exposition as possible.

When it gets down to the gameplay, this is minimalist as well. There is only one attack button (aside from the long-range shiruken button), and attacks are varied with addition of direction, jump and Chakra, the energy used for special attacks. Because of this one-button attack approach, all the characters essentially play the same. Their move set may be different visually, but no complex combos to memorize means that every fighter will have the same or similar move inputs with which to pelt their opponents. Thankfully, there are support characters you can choose to call in during battle as well.

Battles hinge on various dodge techniques, not the least of which is mastering the substitution, which allows you to teleport behind your opponent in the middle of their punishing combo. You are limited to only 4 of these a fight (to prevent you from repeatedly spamming the maneuver), but sadly, there is no in-game tutorial to aid you in the implementation of this move, and seeing as how crucial it is to winning fights, it's a mode definitely missed.

As you battle, you can earn cards and other multipliers, which can help you customize your characters to your liking. Again, a tutorial mode here would have helped with customization and selection, but honestly, I didn't use the cards all that much anyway. It's mostly used in the online mode as it is, and skilled players will enjoy the advantages that multiple card types will offer.

Speaking of multiplayer, it's your average fighting game fare, offering both player and ranked matches, as well as a tournament mode. There was no noticeable lag or latency issues, and with all the grandiose special attacks and animations, this was a good thing.

Graphically, however, Generations is quite compelling. Environments are vast and expansive, character models are diverse, and everything crackles with energy and power, just as you would expect them to in the Naruto universe. The cut-scenes are a mix of 3D game animation to look like recreated footage from the series, as well as the aforementioned single-panel artwork, and while the presentation of this seems a bit odd when mixed together, it does a great job of telling the extensive story in a concise manner. In battle, the game looks fantastic, with huge effects on the specials, and fantastic 3D environments to roam and take the fights through.

Beyond story mode, there are several free play options, such as single player tournaments or one-on-one offline modes. With over 70 fighters to play with and unlock, there's certainly a robust roster here, but despite some customization, it's clear the focus is on single player story, as that's where the majority of the content is found and unlocked.

Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations is a odd beast. The single player content is very good, and has tons of unlockable content to play through. The online component is also competent, and if you're a fan of the series, undoubtedly your favorite character is here.

However, despite all of that, because there's no tutorial to help you with some of the more advanced techniques, coupled with the simplicity of the standard moves, it ends up feeling very shallow. How a game can feel both shallow and robust at the same time is a mystery, but Generations manages to do just that. It's a good game, just a hollow one.



Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations - Reviewed by Ian Bonds
Amicable - A presentable but unmemorable time. Focusing on the bright spots helps, and I appreciate the effort, but I won't be playing this repeatedly.

See more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.

Ian Bonds, Contributor
 Follow Blog + disclosure Tips
Ian is Dtoid's resident review monkey. If there is a game no one else wants to review, it usually goes to Ian. As a reviewer, Ian has been writing for close to ten years for various sites, starti... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our moderators, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

 Add your impressions

Status updates from C-bloggers

Nathan D avatarNathan D
"Everlasting. True love. I am yours." -Rule of Rose T^T
Shinta avatarShinta
MGO's pretty fun! I suck at it though. I mostly hang back and just mark enemies and get the occasional sniper kill. It's pretty fun to be semi-useful with a very hands off role like that. Love my avatar character guy too.
Mike Martin avatarMike Martin
Fuck Insecticons
nanashi avatarnanashi
they pooped in my food they pooped in my food they pooped in my food they pooped in my food
Robo Panda Z avatarRobo Panda Z
I have been accused of the greatest of crimes - cookie snobbery.
KyWii avatarKyWii
Rock Band 4 is really fun...takes me back to my teenage days of high school. Also reminds me of all the hours I wasted on a plastic guitar instead of getting better on a real one xD
Avoclefo avatarAvoclefo
Team Fortress 2 just got a massive community-made Invasion update. SFM short, reskins, cosmetics, and 4 brand new maps?!?! God, I love this game and its wonderful community so, so much. [youtube][/youtube]
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
AARRGGGHHHH!!!, GODDAMIT!, fucking SOMA has crashed 3 fucking times in a row and I always lose ~20 minutes of playtime!, playing the same section over and over kinda ruins the tension! >.<'
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
N-Not that P1 isn't perfect the way she is! Isn't that right sweetie? Yes it... Oh, now don't you go and listen to those P2 fans! They just go around spreading rumors and pretending Hitler was just a handsome gentleman in sunglasses, that's what THEY do!
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
Persona Q has made me realize I really want a Persona 1 remake on 3DS in a similar style. A lot. A loooooooot. You listening, Atlus?
Super Mario Maker, the announcement of Sonic Lost World for Steam, and remembering all of the mods that got made for the PC version of Sonic Generations makes me wish SEGA/Sonic Team would make their own dedicated Sonic level creation game.
gajknight avatargajknight
Hey, is your fridge running? You better catch it. I mean, it has all your food, and without food, you die. Like, forever. You don't wanna die right? If you die, how will you watch The Good wife with your favourite bowl of Ben and Jerry's ice cream? Go.
CJ Andriessen avatarCJ Andriessen
My local Best Buy is drowning in Marth & Dark Pit amiibo
GoofierBrute avatarGoofierBrute
Spooky yet totally true gaming fact: the bushes and the clouds in Super Mario Bros are the same exact shape. #Spooky
Sr Churros avatarSr Churros
It is coming fast AAAAAAH
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
The newest PS4 update finally got rid of that bug where I'd get the "you can customize your power options" message every time I turned on my console!
El Dango avatarEl Dango
Should I just pass on MGSV? I haven't really liked any of the games after Snake Eater, and it's being used as a money sink at the moment.
Mike Martin avatarMike Martin
[Youtube][/youtube] All the episodes are on youtube now. Also I never knew they got to do a season 3. Pretty cool. Now back to Transformers. Scored a gc to my favorite thai place too. Pad ahoy bitches. It's been too long.
ashamasha avatarashamasha
i have almost all the pieces i need to build my own Arcade machine... and the last one arrive this Saturday! Soon, one my childhood dream will became true!
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Interviewer: Konami, why are you selling cosmetic DLC for MGSV? Konami exec: I breathe through my skin.
more quickposts


destructoid's previous coverage:
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations

View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:

Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -