PS3 Reviews: Bleach: Soul Resurreccion Review

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Bleach: Soul Resurreccion Review

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Graphics:

 

7.2

Gameplay:

 

6.1

Sound:

 

6.4

Control:

 

6.8

Replay Value:

 

6.5

Overall Rating:       6.6

 

 

Online Gameplay:

Not Rated

Publisher:

SCEI

Developer:

NIS America

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Action

Release Date:

August 3, 2011

If you’re unfamiliar, Bleach is an enduring franchise based on the popular Japanese TV show. ...and if you are unfamiliar, grasping the storyline in Bleach: Soul Resurreccion is going to prove wildly difficult. But then again, why should we complain about such a drawback? Isn’t this game designed specifically for the hardcore followers of the series? After all, the gameplay is simple and accessible and fans of Dynasty Warriors are likely to take to this like fish to water, and the ceaseless action can keep you occupied for extended periods of time. Even so, regardless of your Bleach knowledge, things get old a little too fast.

The graphics are actually a high point, as they’re both slick and artistic. They capture the essence of the TV show quite well, and many of the animations and special effects are downright gorgeous. Provided you keep hacking and slashing, you’re gonna be satisfied with the visual results, and the overall presentation is diverse (provided you keep playing). Unfortunately, too many of the environments are just plain devoid of life; they’re not only bland, they’re like big empty arenas. It gets better later on but even the graphics can’t avoid the repetitive nature of the game (you’ll see the same effect a gazillion times). Still, overall character and enemy design save the day.

The sound isn’t bad, depending on your taste for cheesy anime voice acting. This is something the recently released Catherine avoided, but that’s because Atlus hired top-notch English voice actors. In the case of the latest Bleach...well, it’s traditional anime; cheesy, overly dramatic, and occasionally comical. The sound effects are sharply refined, though, and the soundtrack fits the on-screen action (partly because the music is crazy repetitive, too). It’s a nice mix and the audio definitely enhances the experience, but I think more could’ve been done.

As you might expect, there are numerous modes for gameplay, but the Story mode is obviously the bread and butter. A war rages in the Soul Society and throughout a 14-episode span, you will play as 10 different characters, battling swarms of enemies and over-the-top bosses that will get your blood pumping. Each episode begins with a brief narrative but not only are they disjointed and difficult to follow, the uninitiated are guaranteed to be lost. I’m one of those uninitiated and I had no idea what the hell was going on. Ever. At the same time, I recognize the game’s target audience.

And in checking around the Internet and trying to gauge the response of hardcore fans, it seems they’re not anywhere near as lost (duh), but they will admit that the plot in Soul Resurreccion could’ve been better structured. And of course, we have to remember that this game is all about the combat: it’s fast, mostly satisfying, and on the surface, extremely simple. While it’s true that you can take down most marauding enemies simply by mashing on the Square button, there’s more beneath the surface. Building a combo combined with character-specific special attacks is cool.

You really just have to experiment a lot to get the full scope and depth of the battle mechanic. The only problem is that once you’ve delved to the bottom, you’ll find that it really is a touch too straightforward, and some of your most devastating attacks just aren’t that fulfilling. In the end, I found myself mashing the button and not caring much about those sweet combos, even though I initially enjoyed myself. Even the boss fights don’t really do much to amp up the intensity, unless you’re really invested in the experimentation concept. Still, the enemy and boss designs are accomplished and unique, and they help to alleviate the deadening feel of the combat.

The camera keeps up with the action and the controls are decent, if not great. Building the combat multiplier and unleashing Super Moves can be especially satisfying but as I just said, you have to keep doing that or your interest begins to fade. The characters will sometimes toss in a few one-liners to keep you entertained, but that only works to a certain extent. I had fun dragging in as many soul points as humanly possible and in some ways, that can be awfully addictive, but the crux of the game’s overarching issue kept returning: the repetitive gameplay chafes. And it never lets up.

The good news is that if you can get into the nonstop action, there’s a ton of bang for your buck in this package. Multiple modes allow you to test new aspects of battle and hone your skills, even if it lacks a multiplayer option. Plus, fans of the series are bound to understand more of the storyline and appreciate the chance to play with ten recognizable faces. That being said, I refuse to believe that even the most die-hard series followers wouldn’t get a little bored…it’s that repetitive and in some cases, simplistic. It’s one of those, “yeah, it’s fun, but…” situations.

Bleach: Soul Resurreccion is a competent action slash-fest, loaded with tons of great enemy and character design, impressive animations, and an accessible, moderately rewarding combat system. But the backdrops are just too bland and uninspired, the repetitive nature of the gameplay gets tiresome, and that accessibility borders on tedious simplicity. If you experiment and rip off bad-ass Super Moves, and you’re a long-time follower of the Bleach franchise, there is some entertainment here. But the overall package just isn’t various or engaging enough.

The Good: Great animations and character/enemy design. Accessible, responsive combat mechanics. Decent control and camera.  Fun factor is significant.

The Bad: Bland environments. Repetitive gameplay gets tiresome. Accessible battle system is a little too simple. If you’re not a Bleach fan, you won’t understand the plot.

The Ugly: “…pretty sure I’m gonna break the Square button if I keep this up.”

8/4/2011 Ben Dutka

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Comments (15 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, August 04, 2011 @ 10:15:36 PM
Reply

Never been much for Anime series that go beyond the standard 2 seasons, they get way out of whack.

It's sad that these games are never very good too, at least they have a solid install base, but that's no excuse for a lackluster title.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 3 down Disagree with this comment

Oxvial
Thursday, August 04, 2011 @ 10:15:57 PM
Reply

I read Bleach and I don't recommend people try to understand the plot, Kubo one of the worst manga writers ever.

Last edited by Oxvial on 8/4/2011 10:16:21 PM

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SayWord
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 12:58:40 AM

I disagree. :P I really enjoy the story of bleach and how he shapes up his characters.

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Oxvial
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 5:08:02 AM

The only good thing Kubo can do is draw cool designs, but the story...you must have low standards, ''Kubo Tite Trolled my fandom'' was a very famous sig for something.

browse on google images if you don't believe me.

Last edited by Oxvial on 8/5/2011 5:13:00 AM

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SnipeySnake
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 5:46:14 AM

I agree, i mean, he even makes a full page of ichigo doing a slash or some kind of effect.

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Oxvial
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 11:07:52 AM

Yes but people buy it because it looks cool,hes a great manga artist even with his overuse of black ink and lack of backgrounds.

Wish he was paired with a decent writer.

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LegendaryWolfeh
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 12:55:54 AM
Reply

I think CyberConnect should be the only ones allowed to make anything if it's related to an anime, since they're the only ones that can do it well.

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SnipeySnake
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 5:49:34 AM

Yep, I just wish they would make a One Piece ps3 game. There hasn't been any for ps3 yet.

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sunspider13
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 2:26:06 AM
Reply

Thanks Ben for the review. I had a feeling that this was going to be the verdict after seeing the trailer video a couple of months ago. I might pick it up in a few months after it comes down in price and after I get through the backlog of games that I have now and going to have by the end of the year, god help me, lol.

I've been reading the manga and watching the anime for the past six years now and it's one of my top ten favorite ongoing series. It's nice that a game is coming out for the 10th anniversary of the series. The manga is getting nuts now and I'm happy that the anime is doing a back story on what happened to Ichigo during that lost year.

Last edited by sunspider13 on 8/5/2011 2:26:52 AM

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TheOldOne
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 9:03:40 AM
Reply

As a fan of the anime, I will get this, but not at full retail price.

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Ultimate_Balla
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 12:48:49 PM
Reply

1 player? Like really now? AND the sxxt sounds terrible in English. Gameplay looks proper though :)

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PANICinc
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 4:59:45 PM
Reply

I am loving this game! It's the Bleach game I've been asking for! I actually talked to one of the developers of the Bleach DS games @ PAX '09 about making a game JUST LIKE THIS! He seemed to like the idea at the time, and well, here it is! Just wish I knew if I had something to do with this game coming into existence!
Oh, and by the way, if you don't like the English voice acting, don't fret! You can change to the original Japanese voices from the main menu screen!

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KNG201
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 5:50:12 PM
Reply

im glad this came out but very disappointed in the genre choice. I mean this is the best they can come out with for the nex-gen consoles? really? Im sorry but Bleach deserves the DBZ & Naruto treatment. A hack and slash? heck why not an rpg next? where is kojima when you need him?

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PANICinc
Friday, August 05, 2011 @ 9:03:24 PM

The Bleach RPG is on the DS. The DBZ/Naruto style is on the Wii.

Just sayin

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Stabs88
Saturday, August 20, 2011 @ 8:24:31 AM

Ninja storm for the PS3/360 is probably the best game they've made from a manga/anime

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