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One Piece Unlimited Cruise SP 3DS review

Half Piece: Limited Cruise, more like

While we're grateful that Europe is suddenly getting a lot of games long before they're even confirmed for America, like Xenoblade Chronicles, The Last Story and Pandora's Tower, it doesn't necessarily follow that the games in question are always worth shipping over from Japan. Sadly, One Piece Unlimited Cruise SP is a good example of this.

It's basically a 3DS port of the Wii game, One Piece Unlimited Cruise Part 1, that sees you taking control of Luffy and a bunch of his fellow pirates as they explore various islands in search of the One Piece, the ultimate treasure.

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The Japanese version of this game contains both parts of Unlimited Cruise, instead of just the first one, meaning this version is essentially missing half of the game. Still, this wouldn't be a problem if the main game itself was fun and, while there's definitely some enjoyment to be had from One Piece 3DS, the game seemingly does its best to hide it from you.

The opening few hours are an immensely dull grind, as you slowly run around an island fighting countless identical enemies, collecting items and bringing them back to various crystals on the island, unlocking new areas every time you've collected enough.

The lack of any meaningful tutorials or instructions means many players will get frustrated wandering around, and navigating the samey levels is a chore.

Pieces Of Hate

Things do eventually pick up as you start to build up your characters' abilities, the enemies begin to show some variation and you get to travel to new areas, but by that point you're likely to be sick of the whole thing and ready to jack it in.

Add to that the choppy frame rate in both 2D and 3D and the lack of an English voiceover (we prefer the Japanese one anyway, but it's hardly that familiar to younger fans of the One Piece cartoon in Europe) and it's difficult to like this game.

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The one shining light is Marineford mode, a very short story mode that takes place during the cartoon's Marineford story arc and focuses on battling, rather than adventuring. This is more enjoyable than the main grindfest, though you'll likely finish it in an hour or two.

Stick with One Piece and you will eventually begin to enjoy it, as it does become a decent little action-adventure game. The question is whether or not the end justifies the means, though, and not many people will think the effort you put in slogging through the game's opening hours will be worth the pay-off.


12 comments so far...
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  1. spacemen13 Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 16:37

    I loved the manga books and its really annoying to find that to find out the games bad

  2. Linkfan42 Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 18:24

    Not what I was expecting, but I suppose you have to be critical. I'm still looking forward to playing the game when it arrives tomorrow though, as I never got a chance to play the Wii version.

  3. Amelie Poulain Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 18:48

    They removed Part 2? Why?

  4. Kesskuron Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 19:20

    I already have part 2 on the wii so i'm not bothered about it not being included

    Pretty much getting it for the Marineford Arc though

  5. Daz_Dagon Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 20:07

    Your revie is pretty harsh. Just because their is a boring start... you do realise about half of all games ever evented have boring starts? I found Skyward Sword boring beyond sin got halfway through and could not be bothered to continue. Skyward Sword is my worst ever zelda.

  6. imbusydoctorwho Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 21:22

    4.0 from Gamespot,so this isn't the harshest review out there.
    Shame about the score,I saw this game on Youtube yesterday and I thought it actually looked like a good game,might get it when it goes down in price.

  7. keero16 Thursday 9th Feb 2012 at 21:59

    I have to say this is a very good looking 3DS game graphics-wise.

  8. Linkfan42 Saturday 11th Feb 2012 at 17:29

    Having played through Marineford Mode (I'm going to start the story tomorrow...) I have to say that I really enjoyed it. I'm sure I read something about part 2 in the manual, but I can't seem to find it now...

  9. masamune Saturday 11th Feb 2012 at 18:14

    They removed Part 2? Why?

    sony's pulled this off before with PoPoLoCrois PSP. this was their excuse: 'People don't want to play long games on portable consoles.'

    i wouldn't be surprised if bamco/nintendo pulled off the same rubbish

    also 60% doesn't mean this is a bad game, it means it's an above average game with some faults.

  10. markdean2012 Monday 13th Feb 2012 at 19:29

    Your revie is pretty harsh. Just because their is a boring start... you do realise about half of all games ever evented have boring starts? I found Skyward Sword boring beyond sin got halfway through and could not be bothered to continue. Skyward Sword is my worst ever zelda.

    GTFO skyward is amazing

  11. Daz_Dagon Wednesday 15th Feb 2012 at 10:30

    Skyward sword was boring but also good. I loved the beetle. But it really was not worth the wait. Alttp an Tp are still my favs.

    After playing the one piece game I love it! The jumping mechanic feels broken the same with dash and jump attacks. I got the limited edition for Ł30 on amazon. Although it really is a fan game.

  12. tenshi_a Tuesday 21st Feb 2012 at 16:31

    They cut a full half of the game out, they don't mention that anywhere on the box or anything, no wonder this gets 60% in the review, that is not harsh at all.

    I only found half the game was missing myself earlier today, when I noticed it was getting one star customer reviews and wondered why. There was no indication of this in preorders - no wonder they are mad!

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