This title was reviewed on PS4, but is also available on PC and Xbox One.
Ever since Jump Force was announced I have been dying to play it. I mean, getting to play as Vegeta versing Hisoka is not something you have the opportunity to do in any other game. The blending of such a large number of characters from a range of different anime made me fan-boy a little. Did the game live up to my hype? Let’s find out!
The anime world collides with our world, bringing with it “venom” which are mind controlled evil beings. It’s up to your character, and various heroes of the anime universes to join the “Jump Force” and fight back!
First job is you need to create your character, which will be your avatar in the main hub and who you use for fighting. The character is fully customisable, from the different shades of colour of their very anime-styled hair, down to their shoes. Throughout the game you will unlock more clothing, and some are available for purchase via in-game currency. Currently my character looks just like Yugi Muto except with a less Yugi face. You will also choose your character’s fighting style at the beginning. These are pretty much the core fighting styles of Goku, Naruto, and Luffy. After this you will be asked to join a team, which will determine the abilities you start off with. The three team leaders are the hero’s I just mentioned, and for example if you pick Goku’s team you will be able to use the Kamehameha move. Each team has multiple members who you will learn a move off at the beginning. Goku’s team consists of Zoro, Gaara and Piccolo, which shows that there’s a blending of anime characters from the three different “starting shows” of the game. The different personalities of the characters in the world work really well together and complement each other perfectly.
Your character’s skills can also be customised, including your main skills and your “J” skills. You will get to choose three normal main moves, such as the Kamehameha and Special Beam Cannon. You will then also have a slot for one ultimate move, such as Yugi’s Slyther the Sky Dragon move. What’s best described as a charge meter is your Ki, which you must charge up to be able to use your main abilities. The ultimate move can only be used when the ultimate bar fills up to at least half way. Ki fills up by attacking enemies, or by holding down R2. Holding down R2 leaves you temporarily at risk of getting a beat down by your enemy though, so be careful! The ultimate move bar will fill up each time your enemy lands a hit on you. J Skills are named after quotes from the various anime and provide unique benefits. Some of these have conditions that must be met for them to be activated, such as having at least 50% health, while others are constantly active. You can equip up to three of these at once.
Combat is of course the strongest point of the game. With a wide variety of moves, such as your quick attacks and your strong attacks, you are able to do some pretty bad-ass combo’s that make for amazing looking fight scenes.
The game is set in a hub which can be accessed either offline or online. The hub has a main area which is where you can enter online or offline battles. You can also go to your missions, and this is how you progress through the story. The mission select has tutorial missions, free missions, extra missions and key missions. I’ll come back to these after explaining the areas! There is a rewards shop for collecting your rewards, an event place for when events pop up, and there’s three other areas which represent the different teams. In each area you can buy upgrades for your J skills and abilities, and there is a shop when you can buy the items to customise your character. Random events will happen throughout the map and will be marked by an exclamation point. These are usually where you will go on a mission with one of the characters or to provide a little bit of story.
As mentioned before, there are a number of different mission types. Tutorial missions are pretty much what they say they are which is a great idea for when you’re starting out, so you don’t look like a total noob. Free missions have five levels of difficulty, ranging from easy through to expert. You will have a team of characters to beat, and there is a specified reward for completing the mission objective. The mission’s objectives aren’t just about winning the battle, there are other specifications such as having 60% of health remaining by the time you’ve swept the floor of your enemy. This is a great addition to the game as it adds diversity to the combat. You get to verse all the different characters, and it’s fun to win the rewards which you can then use to customise your character. This is also a great way to level up before your key missions. I’ve spent heaps of time just completing these missions and am yet to tire of them. Extra missions are special missions, with the first extra mission you are likely to come across being the Level 20 Limit Breaker. By completing this you can raise the max limit your character can go to which means if you want to reach over 9000 (haha) you’ll need to complete these. Luckily last are your key missions, which are the main story line missions. These go between heavy story-based missions, through to being on patrol to recruit new heroes to the Jump Force team. Usually these heroes are infected by venom when you encounter them, so you need to beat them senseless to convince them to come over to your side.
Jump Force has an amazing roster of characters, and I was very excited when they announced that Deku was being added to the game as I am a recent fan of My Hero Academia. Every character that I have played so far feels unique and has their own individual strengths and weaknesses. For me, one of the most interesting characters to play as is Yugi Muto as his attacks mainly involve the Dark Magician, but also uses Dark Magician Girl and Slyther the Sky Dragon.
Unfortunately, the loading screens are really long which is a pain when you’re itching for the next fight. This is most noticeable when you finish beating a new character: A loading screen will appear, only to then change to a 5 second cut scene, then thrown into a long loading screen.
It’s anime. It’s a game. It looks great! I love the graphics and it’s awesome to see how all the different styles of character keep their uniqueness and characteristics but are all designed to be the same style. Of course, this does make a few characters look slightly off, but I can’t really complain. Using Luffy’s Gum-Gum Hawk Gatling is stunning to watch as hundreds of fists slam into your opponent, with one last epic punch! The sound effects are a-maz-ing. The Kamehameha sounds exactly like it should and is filled with power.
No matter who you are, there will definitely be a character that appeals to you! Unless you hate anime, then you’re in the wrong game! Jump Force brings together a huge roster of anime characters and will make your anime dreams come true. Combat is a blast, and it’s a very fast paced game to get your adrenaline pumping. All of the character’s personalities from their respective shows are perfectly captured in the game, and they react how you expect they would. It’s great how they all manage to mesh so well together. I’d recommend this game to anyone who’s a fan of any of the anime and even if you just like a good fighting game!