How many times has it been since we tried out demos for ONE PIECE: PIRATE WARRIORS 4? Well, the game itself has been out for a while now, for the Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PC Steam since 26 March 2020, finally giving us the time to review the game as a whole! Game adaptations of massively popular anime franchises have all been varied of course, with gameplay working to accommodate the spirit of the property. So how does it continue in PIRATE WARRIORS 4?
With musou gameplay that’s managed to sell over four million copies of the game series, by those numbers alone, the PIRATE WARRIORS series has managed to capture that frantic, large scale mook demolition from the anime series. Watch as buildings collapse under your might as you kick up the dust and flatten the hordes before you as you control Luffy and crew.
Follow along with Monkey D. Luffy on his quest to be the Pirate King. For those jumping in to the game for the first time, they’re probably going to be a mite lost as it only briefly gives snapshots of the story so far, heading straight to the meat of the Alabasta arc. Despite the story being effectively “cut short”, the gameplay is kept at a quick pace that brings you right into the action, so you can still have plenty of fun as you smash the sets to pieces.
Fun in the sun with a variety of game modes
The Story mode in this game has been redubbed “Dramatic Log”. In this mode, you’ll be jumping around the various story arcs, which include Alabasta Arc, Enies Lobby, Sabaody Archipelago, Marineford, Dressrosa, Whole Cake Island, and Wano Country. Overall, going through all these arcs would take about 15 hours to complete. What’s especially fun in this case would be playing through the stories with another playable character’s view, where you don’t need to follow Luffy’s perspective!
Treasure Log opens up after a few initial Dramatic Logs. Pick any of the colourful cast and defeat the other characters of the One Piece series! Go smacking around Sanji or Zoro, or whoever you want to your heart’s content.
The Dramatic Logs can only be played with 2 players at once, unfortunately, compared to the 4 player Treasure Log mode. If the former could have more players, besides it being easier to take down bosses, at least more people can enjoy the story together!
The levels in this latest iteration of the PIRATE WARRIORS series look better than ever, as well as adding in new elements in both battle and explorations to keep things fresh! You can really rack up those combos and watch as even buildings are helpless under your merciless attacks.
The developers have worked to give the over 40 characters in the playable cast their unique flavours and energy to their movesets! Indeed, characters from the two main eras of the franchise, from the early Blue East cast to the New World saga have their representations here. The controls are easy to pick up, but even those can throw you in for a loop with how many combos you can chain into!
If you’re trying out this kind of game for the first time, you don’t need to worry! Tutorials and buttons will be explained when you start out step by step. Once you’ve slammed enough cannon fodder, you can hold R1 and the Square / Triangle / Circle / Cross buttons to unleash a special attack. You don’t even have to wait long to blow up even more mooks, as the bar can fill up quite quickly. It makes for really explosive battles as you keep throwing out your specials!
While you can spam those specials, it’s not a bad idea to keep it for when the mooks amass, especially when a boss appears. You can utilize the “Power Dash” and ram into the mass, and launch aerial attacks and deliver devastating blows. Each character will have their own strengths, in the ol’ button mash and jump attacks. If you want to further strengthen characters, you can do so via Skill Boards of the “Beginning Map”!
Each reward you receive can be used to unlock these boards, from regular stats like HP, Attack, Defense, and Speed, to more specializations or if you want, even simply just investing in your favourite character alone. The Beginning Map is something you should definitely want to work on so that your characters will have the stats to face tougher foes. Working through this will also open up more creative combos in battle! Sure, the fast paced action may make slower characters feel awkward, but they do have their strengths, so don’t be afraid to experiment!
The friends and treasures we made along the way…
As most people even vaguely familiar with One Piece would probably realize, there’s loads, and loads, and loads of characters. You can find the playable cast as well as their various movesets – and their advantages – in the handy “Character Encyclopedia”. From Luffy to Usop, they’re all in here for you to check out.
If you find yourself needing to refresh on something, the “Glossary” is there, too. Learn about the Devil Fruit, Bounty or Vivre Card, all the necessary plot things you would need to learn more about the world. You can also revisit the Prologue if there’s something you want to rewatch. Last but not least, the music tracks are available in the Music Play.
Let’s set sail!
ONE PIECE PIRATE WARRIORS 4 is good title which becomes even better if you’re a fan of the manga, anime or the previous games within this ONE PIECE series! The large cast means even those who don’t know about the series can simply pick whoever they like to start playing. Combine this with the fluid skills and wonderful presentation, everyone will be in for a fun, swashbuckling time. See the world that has enraptured so many all over the globe!