Naruto X Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections

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Naruto X Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections (Playstation 5) – Review

Naruto x Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections is the celebration of the 20th anniversary of Naruto’s anime debut, featuring a massive roster of 130 characters, a brand new story, and a recap of the Naruto series, revisiting key moments from the series.

History mode is where fans and players can revisit the key moments throughout the series, covering from the forming of Team 7 to the Chunin exam, and follows as Naruto grows out of being the Hokage village’s prankster. Players will be able to react to a chapter using votes, so if you felt pumped up with Naruto vs Sasuke you can show it off and see what other users thought. Just remember, when Pervy Sage comes to an end, hit the crying emote.

The special new story follows Boruto as he discovers a threat after playing a new online game; a threat waiting to cause a new ninja war on the land. In this mode, you can freely pick who you use during fights – it’s not locked to Boruto, so you can still use your favourite fighter.

The combat can be played in either single-fighter combat or team functions, with up to three other characters able to support and swap between and during the fight. The battlefield takes place in a circular arena, and in team mode, there is a shared health bar so swapping out fighters does not impact health status. Picking the right formation of characters can offer some great rewards and buffs, like combo attacks or team attacks that use both characters to deal massive damage.

For example, the core of Team 7, Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura have a unique finisher that has all three members get into the mix, each landing a few hits before finishing off the attack. Playing across characters and finding a good fit to your style is worth doing, but I tended to stick with the two-person team of Madara and Obito.

There’s a massive roster of characters, though many are the same characters from different arcs. Naruto, for example, can use every version from being a child to the adult versions that are featured in the Boruto series. Other than the time skip characters, there is still an impressive amount of other characters to back up the roster, and it is the first game to feature 10 characters new to the series, including Indra and Kawaki. A new feature for some extra fun is being able to add cosmetics to characters, as well as other outfit colours that you can earn by playing.

The game also supports online versus to test your skill against other players. While it is fun to come across other players, the regions can be rather mismatched, so some players may be at a disadvantage with connection, suffering lagging issues with inputs and movements. Another supported mode is survival, where you will fight against random teams and characters as you attempt to see how long you can last. The health bar recovers after each fight by a small percentage, so trying to end fights quickly and with plenty of health is ideal.

The controls have not had any massive changes from the past instalments, and it has kept to the basic fighting style inputs. It’s also added in an easy combo system, where spamming attacks will finish the combo off with a skill attack, ideal for players who may not be overly familiar with the attack system and younger players.

The graphics have had an improvement to the character models, but not by much overall and cutscenes will play out in two ways – either still images with voice-overs, or with the in-game models walking and talking, and this is more present during the special story mode in comparison to the history mode.

In terms of audio presence, the voice acting is the key element, and all characters you can control are voiced with dialogue options during combat, particularly during the finishing special skills in history mode. There’s also a narrator’s voice giving some background on the story, recapping what has been happening. The special story, featuring Boruto and his friends is the most voice-acted section as it runs with an ongoing story for players to experience.

Naruto x Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections, for fans of the series, is ideal for picking up and playing, with all of the characters in one place rather than relying on DLC drops to add to the roster, and it also is a great and welcoming entry point for new fans, as the history story cuts out a lot of the filler and just focuses on the big key moments throughout the series.

Overall, the game is ideally the same as the Last Storm instalments in that the pattern has not changed over the years, but it works. There is a reason the fanbase is so big for the Storm series, and keeping it simple gives the players what they need. As a long-time player of the series, I do miss the free-roam option that the older games had, and I hope it makes a return to form soon.

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The Good

  • A massive roster of 130 fighters to pick from
  • Great history mode to recap events
  • Brand new storyline
  • A fun combat system that fans like
  • Good voice acting
  • New cosmetic options to add some flair

The Bad

  • Online can be a mixed bag with connections and lag
  • Ideally, the same game again just new characters added
  • No free-roam option

Written by: Shane Walsh


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