One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 –  Review
Follow Genre: Action adventure, brawler
Developer: Omega Force
Publisher: Bandai Namco Entertainment
Platform: PS4, PS3, PS Vita, PC
Tested on: PS4

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 – Review

Site Score
6.5
Good: Price/content ratio is well balanced
Bad: No different gameplay elements throughout the game.
User Score
8.0
(1 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 8.0/10 (1 vote cast)

The company behind the ‘Dynasty Warriors’ series has been responsible for the entries in this series, too. So every fan of either series can rejoice. Then again… One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 is the second game which features Luffy, the first being J-Stars Victory Vs+. The English releases date back to the Playstation 2 with One Piece: Grand Battle! Rush!. Including that there have been 9 entries in the One Piece on Playstation systems.

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Story

If you are a fan of the anime/manga, you’ll have no problems following what’s going on. On the other hand, if you aren’t a fan (yet), you will have no problem getting updated. This is great as most games adaptations of anime start with the premise that the player has some knowledge of the material. When the later entries in the game series are released, the amount of knowledge about the series is increased. This makes it difficult for newbies to the series to dig into the game. One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 allows any player to pick up a controller and dig in. The story mode is easy to follow and any extra information is given right before the mission starts in text format. This way the cut scenes show you the broad strokes, while the text format fills in the details. It’s perfectly complimentary. The anime/manga isn’t finished yet, so this probably isn’t the last installation of the game in the series.

Fans will be pleased to know you’ll be playing right into the ‘Dressrosa Arc’. If you don’t know what this entails, don’t fret, by the time you’re through the ‘Legend Log’, you’ll be right up to snuff with story up to that point. Fans of the anime and/or the manga will see the discrepancies in the story and even though they are there because of the gameplay mechanics and limitations, it might deter hardcore fans.

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Graphics

When it comes to graphics, One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 goes through quite some lengths to keep the manga vibe alive. The art style isn’t cell shaded, which is mostly used for these kind of adaptations, to keep the ‘drawn by hand’ look alive. Even without the cell shaded style the game manages to convey the whole anime style with the use of matching colours. Maps are easy to navigate when you look at the mini map, but less so when you are wandering around without it. There is a possibility to disable it completely, but the maps can be labyrinthine and if you are new to the genre, it really helps if you know where you are going. The game had one or two moments of screen tearing, but nothing major and there were no issues with framerate drops. Seeing that there is a lot of animation going on during fights and the sometimes massive amounts of characters on screen, this is quite a feat. When starting up the game, you’ll be asked if you want to load a certain file. This isn’t done in game, this is done in a Playstation menu. There are many games that give you the loading screen, in game, which makes more sense.

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You’ll be ploughing through mostly the same enemies, taking down vast swathes of them in one stylish and flashy attack. Every once in awhile you’ll fight a captain, which is a slightly bigger grunt with a different weapon. The master pieces are the main characters of the show, the villains and the good guys alike. Having vast armies of grunts with an array of different attacks would be a coding nightmare and would probably give the CPU of your console a migraine, so giving only the main characters different attacks is a given. What is also cool is the animations when you aren’t fighting. Playable characters all have their own way of walking and running. They give the character a personality, which makes it so you don’t feel like you are just playing as a reskin of another character.

Sound

There’s a shocker when you look at the menu in the game. There is no option for the English dubs of the anime. Having English dubs of the anime is usually a given. Dubs can be a hit or miss thing and there’s quite some debate about it, so whether or not you like them is something completely personal, but to not include them is strange. They have the archives from the anime and using them could be written off as staying true to the anime. Knowing the price of the game, having the extra audio added to it, wouldn’t have been a bad thing. The voice acting that is in the game is really good. The dialogue can even be described as bearable when they aren’t screaming their heads off, and there are moments that are really touching. These moments make it so the player is tempted to watch the anime or read the manga, and get interested in the lore.

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Gameplay

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 is an action/adventure, brawler, pur sang. There is no way around it. There are three main modes. Legend log is the first in the list and here you’ll go and play the story of One Piece. There’s the ‘Free log’ in which you’ll also play the story mode, but you won’t be constricted in using certain characters. You can use whichever character you feel like, granted you’ve unlocked them. ‘Dream log’ gives you a way to challenge different islands and unlock characters. When you play the game you’ll encounter certain coins. These help you boost your character. When a character levels up his or her stats are increased, if you want to increase them further or unlock extra special bars you can use the coins.

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Leveling up can done by playing through the different modes or by buying the levels with the in game currency called: Beli. The level buy curve is rather steep and even though levelling up on character might not put a dent into your savings, levelling them all up will cost a lot.

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 is all mostly button mashing. This makes the core gameplay rather easy. Button mashing has never been so visceral. Depending on which buttons you press, different attacks will be used. The scope of some attacks is so massive that it’s really satisfying to see several hundred enemies flying off.

There is an online mode included and there are two ways to play it. First of all, there is the ‘S.O.S. mode’ in which you ask another player for help and they’ll help you tackle the level you are stuck at. There is also the ‘real’ online mode. Voice chat is disabled as default, which doesn’t really make sense, as you’ll need voice chat to help each other work out strategies. On easier difficulties, this isn’t a problem, on harder, not having voice chat makes missions nigh impossible.

Conclusion

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 does what it does well, it doesn’t try and do anything else and sticks with its guns. Fans of the genre will be ecstatic, non-fans will soon tire of the constant button mashing and linear gameplay. The Online Play and Dream log are the most interesting second to the story. The ‘Free Log’ is the least interesting if you’ve already finished the story, because it’s really more of the same. Great if you love it, horrendous if you hate it, and can feel tedious if you are on the fence.

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Rating: 8.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 - Review, 8.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
Q
Q


First game ever was Crash Bandicoot 3 Warped, ever since then, gaming has been something that I've gravitated to. Reading's fun but not as interactive. Always up for a bout of online multiplayer. If that multiplayer is co-op. So if you are up for a friendly co-op session, hit me up. Rahenik's the name to search on PSN.

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