Eric Kelly On July 5, 2016 at 4:14 pm

One Piece Burning Blood LogoIt’s been awhile since there’s been a purely fighting game variant of One Piece. Before, fans had RPG and Dynasty Warriors spin-offs to deal with. But now that the show has been in the public consciousness for a while now in the West, it was time to bring together many of the series best characters for a battle royale. The only problem is that perhaps the game could have stayed in the oven for a bit longer, as it can in fact burn up one’s blood. Just not in a good way.

The game’s setting takes place during the Paramount War of the series, which places it at the show’s big turning point. The concept of Haki users and the two-year time skip are introduced. Luffy invades Marineford HQ with the help of the inmates of the Impel down prison and the Whitebeard Pirates, after hearing about the arrest and planned execution of his foster brother Ace. Most of the story is told through narration to get players up to speed if they haven’t been watching the show on Hulu or reading the manga. If you have only been viewing the show trough Toonami airings, it’s woefully behind this game’s setting. But unfortunately the game doesn’t go beyond the Paramount War, as there are characters in the roster that can be used which could have benefited from having content for them.

As you work through the campaign, you’ll see the story from four different perspectives, although some cut-scenes are recycled, so feel free to skip them if you’ve seen the content. Gameplay plays not to dissimilar to the Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm games or even Spike Chunsoft’s own DBZ fighters. The difference is that there’s no ki charging in the game, and most fighters are melee only. There light and weak attacks, special moves and super moves. For defense, there’s blocking and guard breaking attacks to get past them, as well as dashing. The game also has support characters and multi-character switching, which can let to assists.

All of this can make for a fun time, but unless you are playing online with friends, you’ll be furious at the often cheap AI. They either block most of your attacks or go for the strongest moves at their disposal, wiping you instantly. The game also makes use of Logia users being able to phase through any attack that isn’t Logia or Haki powered. This of course runs on a meter, which has to recharge after a while. The meter itself feels like it takes to long to charge up. The campaign is also dreadfully short, so players will likely be unsatisfied once they complete it. The only other content for offline play will come from grinding out levels or buying new characters to play online or in the game’s challenge mode. The bread and butter of this game lies in the online play, which is pretty great. I encountered no lag, but the game unfortunately only runs in 30 frames, which is kind of bad for a fighter. Perhaps this is due to the fact that it was also designed to played on a Vita. Similarly, the visuals aren’t as good as they could be. But if you love the series, perhaps picking this up on a sale would be a good idea and only if you plan on playing online heavily.


The game uses a fighting Engine not to dissimilar from Naruto or DBZ games, but the game’s AI can be downright cheap.


The game’s multi-platform nature makes the visual style from being as good as it could be, but it looks alright on the current gen consoles.


The game uses music that sounds like it’s from the TV show, although it’s mostly subdued. Voice acting is Japanese only.


When online battles can be immense fun, the campaign is short and cheap, with no way to adjust the difficult other than to tediously grind.

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