One Piece Unlimited World Red is the latest in a long line of video games based on the long running One Piece manga and anime series created by Eiichiro Oda. Published by Bandai Namco games, Unlimited World Red brings the One Piece series to the PS3 and 3DS, as well as debuting as the first One Piece games launched on the Wii U and PS Vita in the UK. So unless you’re a staunch Xbox or PC only gamer, you should have plenty of options to choose from on what version you’d want to play. You can even use cross-save on the PS3 and Vita versions to sync your save files between them, but that would require buying a copy of each one.
Unlimited World Red has two main modes for you to dig into, the Main Story and Colosseum Mode, each with their own different features. The main story was very interesting and had it’s own original idea outside the long saga of Luffy and his crew as told in the One Piece manga. The fact that the original One Piece author ,Eiichiro Oda helped with the character design and storytelling of the game makes the story in this game particularly noteworthy and was one of the key aspects I enjoyed from the game. The main story starts with the introduction of the main villain of the game, Red, and how he got his reputation in the pirate world. His strength is known as to be on par with the strongest pirates known in history (Gold D Roger and Whitebeard) and in the beginning of the story, he uses his abilities to kidnap Luffy’s crew, separating him from his comrades. Of course after the introduction, Luffy sets about finding and rescuing his crew and to ultimately confront Red.
The game generally follows several traits of an action/adventure game plus mixing in a tiny dash of RPG trappings. During each story episode/quest, you can bring to a max of 3 people to fill out your team, then you wander around and explore the map, occasionally encountering roaming bands of marines and other assorted enemies you’ll need to fight. Markers will appear on the map to point to the next objective you need to reach to advance the story or complete a mission or task. The enemies can also wield weapons like swords and bazookas, so it would be good to know what you’re up against when you go into battle. When fighting against the enemies you’ll encounter, you can use basic attacks and also perform combo attacks to do more damage and also give you a short period of time after the attack where subsequent hits will have a bigger impact on the target.
Fans of the One Piece series knows that there are a wide range of special moves for each character in the series and would want to know if this game delivers in this regard. In my opinion, the game is lacking a lot of moves featured in the series and aren’t available for your characters to use in game. For example, Luffy’s signature ‘Gear’ abilities aren’t seen at all in this title . Also, the combo list for your characters isn’t particularly large, so you may end up using the same moves most of the time.
After completing each mission/story episode, you’re awarded some items, which can be money, bugs, fish, crafting items and ‘Words’. ‘Words’ are special items which can boost your characters stats/skills based on which ones you equip, such as one being used for HP boosting to another giving you team attack damage boost, however it is not possible to equip all the words in the game so players will have to use their judgement and chose the best ones for their team.
Other than exploring and fighting in the main story mode, there are also side quests to add to bulk up the gameplay and give you a few more things to do. These quests can range from killing unique bosses to collecting fish/bugs that you may find in certain locations.The bugs and fish can be used in game to enhance your equipment and improve the main hub town you return to between story episodes or quests. By upgrading the facilities available like the Diner, Pharmacy, Garden etc, you can build resources to aid you throughout the story.
Mini games are also available with special items unlocked if the player manages to beat them. These small features will accumulate the player’s time however it is possible to complete the game without caring about these extra features.
The Colosseum mode in Unlimited World Red gives you a chance to step out of the main story and just fight your way through multiple consecutive battles to reach the end. Here, you’ll be pitted against several enemy characters and bosses, which are randomised to vary the sequence of enemies you’ll face each time you play. .
Overall, the pace of the game-play in my opinion is quite slow and lacks the some of the variety you would want in the moves available. Compared to the One Piece Pirate Warrior games ,the lack of a fair number of attacks you’d want to use, as well as no multiplayer mode, makes Unlimited World Red seem like it has much less in way of gameplay content within the package.