Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Neil Flynn 21.07.2020 1

Review for Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto on Nintendo Switch

The acclaimed fourth entry into the Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm series has hit the Nintendo Switch. Bandai Namco has ported the previous three iterations to the system, sold as Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Trilogy, as well as selling, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2, and Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 individually. The original three titles did definitely show their age when ported to Switch, so how will the fourth one fare?

Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto is a port of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One title that includes the expansion DLC, Road to Boruto as part of the standard package, and at the high price that it retails for it should be expected. Picking up where the story left off in Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, this runs from the start of the 4th Great Ninja War and beyond. This time the story is played out through selected branching icons on a menu select screen, rather than the sandbox style of its predecessor.

Screenshot for Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto on Nintendo Switch

Divisive as it may be, this choice does cut out a lot of the backtracking and running around that felt like padding in the previous title, and is now separated into Adventure mode. Instead Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto plays out in a rather linear fashion, with cut-scenes now shown in a story book style rather than using the in-game engine. Despite its different approach, the story itself, including voice acting and art style, all pay absolute fanservice to the anime that it is based on. Cyber Connect 2 did a fantastic job of making this look as close to the real deal as possible, and has translated this to Switch in a manor that needs rapturous applause.

Part of the Naruto universe is the incredible score that go hand-in-hand with famous fighters and characters, unfortunately, the one area that Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto is perhaps not as true to itself is in the audio department, as it is missing the original soundtrack from the anime, but the music that does replace it feels well-suited and attempts to replicate the original style, but it still brings down the authenticity a tad. The voice-over is also available in Japanese and English, and is featured throughout fights, cut-scenes and in adventure mode, all delivered to the high standard and level that previous games in the series have set.

Screenshot for Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto on Nintendo Switch

The fighting style between the four games has evolved piece by piece, but has now been fully refined and honed in Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto, which takes the 3D arena fighter genre to the its best. In an ordinary fight players can choose up to three characters for their team, and these can be switched out throughout the battle, or even be used as support to help intervene and break up on going chain attacks by the opposition. The Naruto instalments have been great for beginners to jump in and play, with no overly complicated button inputs to pull off moves, although there is a reverent online community who would beg to differ. Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto has a control scheme that is really easy to pick up and play that is accessible for anyone who has never played a fighting game before.

Screenshot for Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto on Nintendo Switch

Each character on the roster has a set of unique moves, which again pay fabulous fanservice to the source material, all equipped with their special finishing moves which can be activated in a very cinematic fashion. The gargantuan roster of over 120 characters puts Super Smash Bros. Ultimate to shame, as so many featured characters have such unique abilities, although the balancing between fighters perhaps isn't so well tuned as in the latter.

Post-story content, which is found in Adventure mode, brings back the aforementioned sandbox style from before. Seeking various missions, reliving past fights, and performing fetch quests for NPC, all again pay great homages to the incredibly extensive lore. Various characters have their own arc and time to shine... but unfortunately performance in this world slows to an absolute crawl in this mode, especially in areas that have a lot going on in them; even more so in handheld mode. Other modes include an extensively built out Free Battle against the CPU or human opponents, including making mini-leagues and tournaments, or battling through in Survival Mode to take on as many opponents as possible. Online also available, but definitely one for the masters as players playing in ranked battles better be prepared to bring their A-game.

Screenshot for Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

This is a fantastic port of the Xbox One and PS4 title, although somewhat oddly priced. Everything from the graphics, sound, controls, story, extensive roster, and most importantly fighting mechanics, make an incredibly fun package that also pays fantastic tribute to the source material. The story and its set pieces are delivered in such a genuine manner that it does feel like it's replicating the anime in an interactive fashion. The Story, Adventure and Boruto's Tales add up to at least 30 hours of content, and are all executed brilliant, with exception of the frame drops in Adventure mode. If Naruto has a nostalgic place in your heart, then Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto is a must-own.

Developer

CyberConnect2

Publisher

Bandai Namco

Genre

Fighting

Players

4

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

My only negative for Storm 4 from the ps4 version was the number of slideshow cutscenes vs Storm 3's recreation of the anime scenes in their 3d game engine. The stuff that is interactive and full 3d in Storm 4 is of such an amazing quality it really is amazing.

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