Official Nintendo Magazine

Log in to access exclusive Nintendo content, win prizes and post on our forums. Not a member yet? Join for free

BlazBlue: Continuum Shift II review

Apparently, it's actually pronounced "Blaze Blue". So now you know

The 3DS is already home to handheld versions of two of the most popular fighting series of all time - Street Fighter and Dead Or Alive - with a Tekken game on the way early next year. Is there space in its catalogue, then, for yet another? Just about.

Click to view larger image
BlazBlue is one of Arc System Works' two big 2D fighting game series (the other being Guilty Gear). While other 2D brawlers like Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat have made the jump from sprites to polygonal characters, BlazBlue sticks to its guns with a gorgeous hand-drawn style - it feels like you're playing an anime cartoon rather than a game.

As a fighter, BlazBlue is fairly complex. Its combo system is pretty tight and there are all manner of blocks, counters and reversals you'll need to learn to master the game. Thankfully there's a superb tutorial system which covers everything from the basics (how to walk forward) to ridiculous 12-hit combos with cancels and specials all over the place.

It's easy to get bogged down in the tutorial's technicalities, but the hilarious script (one of the game's characters continually puts you down as she teaches you how to fight) keeps your interest.

Blue Funday

In terms of single-player modes you'll be sorted for a while. As well as the standard arcade and training modes, there's a Challenges mode which acts like the one in Super Street Fighter IV, tasking you with pulling off the trickier combos.

The Abyss (Beat a series of increasingly difficult opponents while gaining items) and Legion (Progress through a map with a team of fighters) will keep you busy for a long time, and there's a ridiculously long Story mode with lengthy plots for each of the game's 18 characters.

Sadly, there's far more story than fighting here, so unless you're a sucker for OTT anime voice-acting and bizarre scenarios, you'll be giving your right thumb some good exercise as you bash the A-button.

It takes some getting used to playing the game with the D-Pad and some of the more intricate moves can be tricky to pull off every time, especially for the more dedicated fighting fans used to playing with arcade sticks. Amazingly, despite its hefty control customisation settings, there's no option to control your character with the Circle Pad, which could have been far more preferable.

That's not BlazBlue's only flaw. The lack of online multiplayer is unacceptable when you consider it's been done in Street Fighter and Dead Or Alive, and there's some annoying slowdown which shouldn't be happening on a 3DS. Still, fighting fans looking for something to tide them over until Tekken will be content with this, as long as they're willing to battle the control system first.

Comments

7 comments so far...
Add a comment

  1. lrwr14 Monday 7th Nov 2011 at 17:56

    I got into Blazblue when I played one on the PSP, and loved it. So I might consider getting this. I liked the battles, I could actually "juggle" my opponent and the combos were easy to do and master.

  2. zapper01 Monday 7th Nov 2011 at 18:42

    No, the lack of online multiplayer is not "unacceptable" because not every game needs online. Reminds me of when you kept stupidly complaining when a game didn't use every single feature of the 3DS. Sigh.

  3. pokemaster Tuesday 8th Nov 2011 at 07:40

    Already have SSFIV 3D and DOA:D, and will most probably get Tekken, but am undecided on this. The lack of online is a shame, but the other modes might make up for it. Might wait for the price to drop a bit as this November is already packed with games that I want more.

  4. ChrisONM Tuesday 8th Nov 2011 at 12:04

    No, the lack of online multiplayer is not "unacceptable" because not every game needs online. Reminds me of when you kept stupidly complaining when a game didn't use every single feature of the 3DS. Sigh.


    That might be the case for something like a Mario or Zelda game, but when the whole point of a game is head-to-head combat against someone else and its competitors (Street Fighter, Dead Or Alive) both include online modes then it is unacceptable.

  5. imbusydoctorwho Tuesday 8th Nov 2011 at 13:23

    Looks like it could be quite a good game,but I'd rather get Tekken instead.

  6. muchaslucas Tuesday 8th Nov 2011 at 15:02

    No, the lack of online multiplayer is not "unacceptable" because not every game needs online. Reminds me of when you kept stupidly complaining when a game didn't use every single feature of the 3DS. Sigh.


    That might be the case for something like a Mario or Zelda game, but when the whole point of a game is head-to-head combat against someone else and its competitors (Street Fighter, Dead Or Alive) both include online modes then it is unacceptable.

    Unacceptable is such a strong word...
    I would say its 'disappointing' as other titles have online play, but its only of use to people who want to play online. Therefore, it is acceptable to gamers who do not wish to play online.

    Diplomatic response lvl up!

    Moving on, it is great to see a good selection of fighters on the 3DS so far, with Tekken just around the corner. Marvel vs Nintendogs would be the cherry on top.

  7. LewiiG Tuesday 8th Nov 2011 at 17:10

    Hmm... I want this game and i dont care about online. So is it worth it? The only thing is, i just want a portable Blazblue and those extra DLC characters. Controlls i'd get used to i guess. (I did with street fighter). Another question is wether i should get this for PSP or 3DS. Hmm such a predicament. Also i have both Blazblue games on Xbox 360 anyway, soooooooooo Ugh. I'll look into the version differences and maybe get it for christmas...

Register or log in to commment
Add a comment
Nintendo Co., Ltd. is the owner of certain copyright which subsists and trade marks and other intellectual property rights in certain content, characters, artwork, logos, scripts and representations used in this publication. All rights are expressly recognised and they are used by Future Publishing Limited under licence © 2006 Nintendo Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. "Nintendo", "International Nintendo Licensed Product" "Nintendo DS", "Nintendo DS Lite", "Nintendo DSi", "Nintendo 3DS", "Nintendo DSi XL", "Nintendo 3DS XL", "Wii" and "Wii U" and the associated logos are the trademarks of Nintendo Co. Ltd. All rights reserved.