One Piece: Pirate Warriors 2 Review

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One Piece: Pirate Warriors 2 is the sequel to the best selling game from the previous year.  While personally I think the first game was a let down, this game lives up to its name as a successful franchise for both One Piece and Koei’s Musou.

There are many flaws in the first game, and this new game seems to improve, and remove all those problems.  The biggest problem I have while playing the first game is the lack of characters.  A massive One Piece adventure on PS3, and we only have 13 playable characters?  That’s ridiculous.  However, in this new game they updated the playable roster to around 30 characters!  See, now that’s a roster.  While the glass is always going to be half-empty, I’m still happy that we have a lot more characters to control in this game.

The story of the first game follows the Straw Hat’s adventure form the series.  However, the story purposely leave out some important events or any characters or locations associating to them.  Including everything about Skypiea or Thriller Bark.  It’s never fully explained why the game purposely takes out those events.  But great news, this game includes all the stories and characters they taken out in the previous game and we get to enjoy the world of One Piece in a further extend.  Also, the game adds additional background characters to enhance the gaming experiences.

The story is superb in this game.  A stand-alone story where most of the members of Straw Hat Pirates are brain controlled by some strange dials.  Luffy, attempts to get his crew members back, team up with some of the most unconventional characters in the One Piece universe including Smoker, and the entire White Beard Pirates.  The story even started with something called the “Great Pirate alliance” where a lot of pirate crew allied together to fight the Marines, and the evil forces of Black Beard.  It turns out, Black Beard gets a hold of bran controlled dials, and he uses them to control some of the strongest characters in the One Piece world for his own benefits.  While the story probably won’t make sense at all in the original series, I secretly hope that the series will take the route like the game does.

The first game requires players to do some stupid tasks to travel from point A to point B within a certain time limit.  Most of these tasks are platform jumping ones that if players failed, they have to start all over again.  The tasks are not in true spirit of a Musou game, which usually only requires players to beat them all!  The second game removes all those jumping tasks, and it only focuses on the fighting aspect of the game.  A wonderful decision by the Koei company.

The only problem I have with the game is the repeat gameplay.  While the game features great story and characters, it’s not enough to make up with the repeat beat-up of the enemies.  While it’s fun to come back to play the game every once in a while, it can get tired easily if played for a long time.  This is a big problem for me, because I usually like to play my game in one sitting.

Anyway, the game is a wonderful one that makes the previous installment looks like a very long demo.  Hopefully Koei is willing to make more One Piece: Pirates Warriors game and more characters will be playable in the next.  See what I say about glass being half-empty?

I do have a question though, how come Shanks is never in the game?  He’s an important character, and I just don’t understand why he’s absent in both games.  Maybe because Shanks hasn’t really show his fighting moves yet, and Koei doesn’t want to give him generic moves.  Yep, hopefully that’s the reason.

8.8/10

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