Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 First Look

Naruto makes the leap online, complete with cel-shaded visuals and epic boss battles.

With the Naruto manga selling in excess of 100 million copies worldwide, it comes as no surprise that the Konoha ninja is making another appearance in the world of video games. Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 marks the first appearance of the Shippuden storyline on consoles. Thanks to the extreme popularity of the anime in Europe, it will be released there before it hits its home country of Japan. Following in the footsteps of its predecessor, Ninja Storm 2 combines the sharp look of the anime with its intense over-the-top battles. We took a first look at the game to see how Naruto's latest adventure is coming together.

Ninja Storm 2 is a cel-shaded 3D fighting game that lets you take control of one of 40 characters from the series. It faithfully follows the Naruto Shippuden story arc with a new story mode that developer CyberConnect2 has promised will be "more drama based." Like its predecessor, it's told via onscreen text and cutscenes, which precede and follow battles. You can choose up to three characters for each battle, switching among them with the shoulder buttons. Other controls for fighting have been updated. Though we weren't shown what the exact changes were, we were told that they would be simplified and much more intuitive than before.

Many other improvements have come directly from fan feedback. For example, fans wanted more of the over-the-top boss battles from the original. There are more than three times as many in Ninja Storm 2, with most being longer and outlandish. We were shown a few snippets from some boss battles, the first of which saw Naruto battling Kakashi. The first half of the battle looked like a standard fight, with the characters launching large energy blasts against each other. At times, the fight would move into the air, with long melee combos taking place. After Kakashi took a number of hits, the battle changed. A short cutscene was followed by both characters launching massive energy blasts at each other. At this point, quick-time commands popped up onscreen, corresponding to the animation. In this case, a single button had to be repeatedly hammered as quickly as possible to charge up more energy. Eventually, there was a huge explosion and Kakashi was left wounded in the centre of a large crater dug out by the blast.

The second boss battle we saw was against a massive electric eel. Its size meant it filled most of the screen, and a different technique was required to take it out. In front of Naruto were several floating islands in a lake. He had to navigate the platforms while avoiding the eel's attacks. Once he got close enough to it, he could attack, but this caused it to launch bolts of electricity that flowed through the water. Naruto had to be careful not to fall into the water while it was attacking, or he would risk electric shock. Similar to the other boss battle, this one also took place in two sections, with the second section using quick-time events.

Over-the-top explosions are a regular occurrence in Naruto.

Like its predecessor, Ninja Storm 2 will feature offline two-player battles complete with team special technique moves. New to the series is the ability to battle online across Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network, though we were given no details on how the functionality will work. Visually, it retains the same style, with environments designed by the animation team behind the anime. The team blends cel-shading with hand-painted backdrops, which give it a beautiful look. The characters are extremely detailed, even in the heat of battle when faced with ridiculous explosions and screen-filling energy blasts. Anime purists will also be pleased to hear that both the English and Japanese voice-overs have made it to the sequel and can be switched over at any time.

It's clear from our short demo that CyberConnect2 is listening to Naruto fans, implementing many of the improvements they've requested. Rather than rewrite the game, the improvements simply refine it, with each tweak nipping way at the criticisms levelled at the original. Namco Bandai has promised to show more of the game at this year's Electronic Entertainment Expo, so keep an eye on GameSpot for more on the game in June. Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 is due out on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 the third quarter of 2010.

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92 comments
VilandasUK
VilandasUK

Already played this game and its just awesome still playing

ventusflash
ventusflash

i just went to naruto wiki and it showed a character list naruto can go sage mode and 6 tailed mode and the attieres are awesome

Shaman432
Shaman432

So for the 360 faithful who haven't had a game since Broken Bond is the plot-line going to feel like a disconnect if we aren't familiar with the first of this sequence?? That would be :(

ansef1x
ansef1x

i hate the specials now in this game their so short and boring in the game first was better cause the specials were long and done with such care i if they make a storm 3 they have have an option 2 have long or short specials before going into a fight cause when i slap someone with a finishing special i wanna see the length of it all

Trevon05
Trevon05

The 3th Hokage is way stronger

Handsome_Joe
Handsome_Joe

@daultimate no lars is just an extra character however u will happy to know that the collectors edition character is the 4th hokage.......this game is goin to be awesome

daultimate
daultimate

I saw a preview that showed a Tekken 6 character fighting Naruto. Is this a pre-order character or is there going to be a few extra Tekken fighters in the mix? This is going to be the best Naruto game ever without adding the Tekken fighters but, that is a great gaming addition

McNeelyJ39
McNeelyJ39

Anyone else disappointed that it isn't a sequal to the xbox 360 game Naruto: The Broken Bond? That game was much stronger than Ninja Storm on the PS3. How didn't that get pushed forward compared to Ninja Storm which honestly felt like a pain in the butt. All the filler missions to gain xp in order to play through the story, which wasn't even accurate.

Pr0ving4Gr0undz
Pr0ving4Gr0undz

ahhh this is gonna be the 1st naruto game i own ever since the one for the gamecube which sucked balls lol clash of ninja i think it was called?? im so getting this!!!!!!

ke873
ke873

I agree, this game is going to be great. But what would make the whole naruto video game series so much better would be the ability to create your own ninja.

blueguykisame
blueguykisame

hopefully a step in the right direction. Naruto has sooooo much potential in the video-games scene.

hellpolice
hellpolice

Looks nice and judging from the anime cut-scenes it looks like the boss battles are going to be flaaaaashy, long and that's a good thing...if you're going for epic...Also is based on the bad ass Shippuden story arc.

Billy2by4
Billy2by4

Sweet, unlike the original ultimate ninja storm, I can get this one since its on the Xbox 360 now as well. Thank you creators for using your wonderful art of... logic. Oh, and maybe you can update the character roster with DLC if a new character appears? Meh, you can hope.

europe19
europe19

This is the best naruto game ever,i'm gonna get it the first day it comes out!!

Oblivion000
Oblivion000

Love this game, can't wait to use Pain. and Rock Lee! :P

A-myrtaj
A-myrtaj

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Ninja_TurtleXD
Ninja_TurtleXD

I think this is officially going to be one of the best (if not THE best XD) Naruto game ever!!! And the fact that there is online is only the icing on top of the cake....at least CyberConnect2 listens to the fans (unlike other game developers out there....-_-")

PulsingDeath
PulsingDeath

omgness ppl its gonna be AWESOME! cant wait to fight pain >:D

naruto1920
naruto1920

also i prefere hearing it in japenese cuz i hate english version (dont get hating on me cuz i like japenese version better) any way love this game #1 game ima gonna be playing so getting

naruto1920
naruto1920

so f***** happy this game has online cuz naruto storm 1 diddnt have online and it got SOOOOOOOOOOO BOring after that so really hoping for better freedom like travling to sand or wat ever not only roaming the leaf village (even though FRiken HUge in anime) also love u cud use all 6 pains thats so cool but cant get my head of the online feature they added so happy yessss. also A MUST HAVE ON # 1 WISHLIST FOR NARUTO FANS LIKE ME so yea im really desperate for this gameand i love that i can challenge people from USA to Japan so kool and im pretty sure USA can beat Japan any way im ganna love this game.

DeathFriction
DeathFriction

Looks like a great game. From what I've seen so far this game has the potential for a truly outstanding experience.

Narutoo09
Narutoo09

The game is going to be released in Europe 3.9.2010 but in America and Japan 29.9.2010 .

bbymoss
bbymoss

I hope it follows the naruto broken bond game style. The first storm was good but the story lacked. I didnt like that the only place you were was leaf village. some exploration would be great! Excited though!!!! BIg fan of Naruto and have been following the episodes online. Sage mode is awesome!!!!!

vengefulwilberg
vengefulwilberg

This is going to own on so many levels. Namco Bandai, you guys are the king of anime fighters. I am going to play the demo until my eyes bleed like Itachi and Sasuke.

HitmanReborn28
HitmanReborn28

dammit, im looking forward to get this game, it will be fantastic, simply astonishing

destinyDemon
destinyDemon

yeah downloadable content sure but not if it costs money what do they think we are money trees or what

tahseen92
tahseen92

how many moves does a character at least have in his command list ? because i have never played naruto before and i kinda liked this. plz reply

jjlinnnnn
jjlinnnnn

can't wait for this game!!!!

RitsukoEX
RitsukoEX

I can't wait to pick this game up for my Xbox360!!!!

ali-009
ali-009

I need the to play from the beginning, From Naruto Arch to the end of Naruto Shippuden, I hope this game does that, unlike the first game.

Narutoo09
Narutoo09

i cant wait anymore i want it now and the best part is theres going to be naruto sage mode :D

NoLifeGamin
NoLifeGamin

If online multiplayer works, then this will probably be one of the best naruto games EVER!

dwiki_
dwiki_

this game will be release 28 sept 2010

Legolas_Katarn
Legolas_Katarn

With the addition of online I might be getting this one.

Eulish
Eulish

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

SefPhilange
SefPhilange

Purplekjw - I love Naruto, but these fighting games do nothing for me. I'd love to see a nice open-world Naruto RPG. There's so much potential in the backstory and landscapes to create a truly amazing game. ----- Where as i have played every single naruto game out there cept for a few psp titles and those not to reach EU - Ninja storm was, when i first played, and to this day still is, even with clash3 out, the best sim of how a ninja fight should be in a game. Due it being a full blooded fighter its lack of fullfillment in the story part was at a standstill. However as we all can hear it sounds like they're going at it with a different angle now as well, building up the roaming as in BB on x360 hopefully. And AMEN to the last bit - Naruto IS the perfect prefix to a great mmo or just a propper rpg where u're playing a newly hatched ninja, picking a style, path, elements.. etc etc.. its right tehre for the taking.. compared to DBZ which got their mmo out in asia, its twice teh size in content.. that might be a scare-factor.. its a huge project really..

thelastuchihas
thelastuchihas

yeah as i said before when it said 360 i tho0 i thought they would combine both formate games. the greatness of ninja storm story telling and fights. but with the free roam of the village to each artc such as running to sand village to get gaara. not just text based then fights. .. and also for online recently played red dead redemption online. they have a free roam. were you can do stuff . and also online fighting areas like gang wars.. bit of subject. add a free roamfeacher to the online. that would be speaclile

firebladedx
firebladedx

Loved the previous game EXCEPT - The village whilst detailed and expansive got VERY boring finding all the balloons. And Lack of online. Except for those should be good.

Donie95
Donie95

sweet game I really hope they improve the free roam in story mode the last was pretty dull walking around the village. Fighting looks as good as ever though, definite must buy for naruto fans

YamaBushi13
YamaBushi13

They need to make this a decent online game, more stages from old Naruto and the New. More importantly though, more super moves and more characters!!!! More downloadable content needed to make it fun (stages, costumes, characters)...!!! I WANT SOME OF THIS THOUGH... I LOVE THE PREVIOUS GAME!

Majero88
Majero88

This game looks awesome can't wait, just hope it doesn't have so many pointless mini games like the first one