Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes

PSP®
Release date: 2 November 2007
Publisher: Ubisoft

Overview

Go from student Ninja to Hokage in this amazing fighting game based on the popular comics and TV show.

Create your dream squad of ninja recruited from the rich universe of Naruto. Inspired by the manga and anime this is the first Wireless game based on Naruto on PSP.

In Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes you will battle across eight interactive battle stages drawing from a pool of 20 playable characters, including Squad 7 - Naruto Uzumaki, Sakura Haruno and Sasuke Uchiha. Additionally, using power-ups you can customise any character to your own style of play.

  • Try out a wide variety of different team combinations to awaken the
    hidden skills that lie within each character
  • Power-up your favourite character to give yourself an edge in battle
  • Put your ever-growing skills to the test and rise up through the ranks to become the ultimate Hokage
Note: online functionality not available on PSP-E1000 series.

Preview

Fighting tails

Naruto, the vessel of the Nine-Tailed Fox demon, and his fellow Ninjas at the Academy enter the fray in Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes on PSP.

From manga to anime, anime to videogame, Naruto's rise in popularity has been meteoric since its debut in the weekly Japanese magazine Shonen Jump in 1999. Since then the universe of this garish orange be-jump-suited, young ninja has exploded, garnering and delighting fans across the globe and Naruto's first chakra-charged outing on PSP is no exception.

Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes excels in providing an exceptional beat 'em up experience on PSP, which is in keeping with its rich background.

Two game modes dominate the action. Heroes Mode is based on the squad system of the Ninja Academy; a team of three ninjas such as Squad 7 comprised of Naruto Uzumaki, Sakura Haruno and Sasuke Uchiha, do battle against opposing squads over a number of stages.

At each stage you choose the order in which your three characters will enter the melee. Your chosen combatant then fights until they're knocked out or all of your opponents are defeated. Each victory earns you a Health reward for that character, while failure means the next member of your team will enter the fray. A team bonus of both Health and Chakra is given at the completion of each stage.

Before combat begins at each stage you also have the option of using skills to enhance your squad members or hinder your opponents. Naruto can employ Sexy Jutsu to lower an opponent's attack twice, Sakura can recover a squad member's Chakra three times, and Sasuke is able to use Chidori once to lower an opponent's health.

These options add a layer of tactical consideration to the game. By picking the order in which your characters battle you're able to rest heroes on certain stages, while wise use of skills is crucial to overcoming the more difficult levels of Heroes Mode.

Characters can use Chakra to perform a range of specialist attacks from Naruto unleashing the power of the Nine-Tailed Fox demon to assault his opponent with a barrage of attacks, to Sakura channelling her inner rage to create a ghostly, giant reflection of herself that crushes her opponents between its ethereal palms.

Animation for all of these special attacks is beautiful; throughout the game the anime-like visuals are gorgeous and slickly animated, and make you feel like part of the show.

Promotion Test is the second prominent mode. In it you're set very specific tasks, such as to defeat your opponent in so many counts or win with full Chakra. Additionally, to access these tests of skill you must acquire different coloured scrolls from Heroes Mode or the traditional VS. battles. To partake in a Genin level test requires 12 of each scroll, while Chunin level requires 24 for instance. Success in these tests will take you from Academy ranking to the venerable position of Hokage.

A final touch allows you to customise characters with Power-Up points, which are earned after every battle. A character's Attack, defence, Speed, Chakra, Stamina and Weapon attacks can all be increased over time. This development is essential for tackling the tougher levels of Heroes Mode and the advanced Promotion Tests.

For fans, Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes is a must, fitting perfectly into the ever-growing cannon of this manga and anime phenomenon. For anyone that likes a good beat 'em up on PlayStation, which also adds new dimensions to the traditional VS. format, then this is a sure contender.


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