One of the biggest announcements at the Bandai Namco event? The unveiling of the next entry in the licensed brawler you folks can’t get enough of. Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm on the PlayStation 3 not only presents one of the better acronyms in all gamedom (NUNS!) but it offers a significant upgrade to a series, that honestly, was getting kind of stale. Year after year, offering little more than later storylines and increased character rosters.
Rather than piling fan service onto an established template, they’ve noticeably revamped the entire perspective of the game, from double-panned 2.5-D, into a more behind-the-back point of view. It really is beautiful evolution for the series. We watched Fox Boy battle enemies on the ground, around 3D obstacles, and even up walls.
Cineractive Chakra scenes are back, but they execute much more seamlessly, with no momentary PS2-era black screen transition. This time around, you can also take two other characters into battle to assist you, in addition to learning new jutsus as you progress through various missions taking place during episodes 1 through 135. (making NUNS the most comprehensive game using the Naruto canon to date.)
And instead of a late-to-the-party, Japanese port, the US will be getting this baby first this October only on PS3. You know we love our ‘Ruto here, having given the Ultimate Ninja series consistently good scores across the board. Unfortunately, the kind devs from CyberConnect 2 wouldn’t let us get a hands-on, meanies, but President/CEO Hiroshi Matsuyama was nice enough to answer even our most trifling fanboy questions (With inquisitive contributions from PlayStation: The Official Magazine’s Teresa Dun.)
Note: The interview contains some scattered English, as it was conducted through a Japanese translator.
GamesRadar: So is the camera always behind the back?
Hiroshi Matsuyama: Actually, it moves according to the real time animation so that the character is always in the picture. But the main concept keeps everybody within the screen.
GR: Does it maintain the control scheme of the other Ultimate Ninja games?
HM: The buttons [are] the same as the other Ultimate Ninja games. Basically the Circle is attack, X to jump, the Square throw long-range attacks. So just pressing the circle buttons will actually combine the Chakra.
GR: Is Triangle still Chakra?
HM: The difference this time is if you press the Chakra button, the other buttons input that you do become more stronger. Instead of a standard jump you do a dash attack…and [there’s] the projectile with the Chakra… And of course, use your physical attack and it becomes a special move, combo.
One of the things that we really wanted to show was the very ninja, stylish things, so… using the jump buttons you can [perform] multiple types of different acrobatic and ninjitsu. By pressing the Triangle button twice, it’ll use the special-