The madcap adventures of Monkey D. Luffy’s and the Straw Hat Pirates go portable.
The One Piece manga series, written and illustrated by Eliichiro Oda started out as a serial in Japan’s famous Shōnen Jump weekly anthology magazine. It has since been collected into graphic albums, available the world over, spawned a cartoon show by Toei Animation as well as many animated feature films.
Hugely popular in Japan, One Piece has had dozens of video game adaptations, only handful of which have made it to the west. Bandai Namco’s Pirate Warriors series is one of those exceptions that have made it to our shores.
Originally released on PlayStation (3,4 and Vita) and PC in 2015, One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 has now gone portable with a new version that includes all the previously released DLC.
This button-mashing extravaganza is perfect for portable gaming. The episodic nature of the tales of Luffy and his crew make it an easy game to pick up and have a quick play.
The visuals look great on the Switch’s screen but, as usual, don’t fair quite as well on a TV screen. No matter how you play it, the game’s manga-inspired visuals still look lie they’ve been ripped straight out of Shōnen Jump.
If you’ve played any of Koei Tecmo’s Dynasty Warriors games you know what you are in for. Luffy and the Straw Hat Crew take on hundreds of enemies in huge melee battles. In retaining the kinetic humour of the comic books, the combat has been suitably amped up resulting in over-the-top special moves and bodies being flung all over the place. This is button-mashing combat as it’s best.
The game allows players to relive the One Piece story, told through comic panels and animated cut scenes. The details of the actual plot of the comic-books is glossed over by way of a voice-over. The One Piece mythos are really used as an excuse to bash around hordes of enemies.
There’s plenty of replay value. As well as the main campaign, the Legend Log, the Free Log enables player to revisit chapters of the story to better their score and gain more collectables. The Dream Log adds a continuing adventure to the game where you can unlock more characters and rare items. The game can also be played, across all modes, with a friend via splitscreen multiplayer.
One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 Deluxe Edition is delight to play on the Switch, particularly if you are a One Piece fan. If you don’t get on with the likes of Dynasty Warriors or have had your fill of button-mashing, you may want to look elsewhere.