Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Hands-On - PS3 Demo, Graphics, and Gameplay

We take on the upcoming demo of Namco Bandai's action game for the PS3.


If you've been keeping an eye on the video game landscape, you might have noticed more than a few games based on Naruto bursting onto the scene. You'd think main character Naruto Uzumaki had just performed his signature Shadow Clone Jutsu move and spawned a small army of lookalikes ready to do battle. The latest entry in the wall of Naruto games comes from Namco Bandai, which, along with developer CyberConnect2, is prepping Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm for the PlayStation 3. We had a chance to try out the upcoming demo of the game, which is set to be released in the coming weeks.

The new Naruto game will feature ancient ninja techniques. Pictured here: The art of kicking a guy in the face.
The new Naruto game will feature ancient ninja techniques. Pictured here: The art of kicking a guy in the face.

The demo features two playable characters to try, Naruto and his teacher Kakashi. Additionally, there are cameos from Naruto's rival Sasuke, his gal pal Sakura, and team leader Guy, all of whom appear as support characters you can call in during a fight. You'll be able to duke it out against the CPU or a friend on a smallish training stage that has you fighting on land and water. The demo focuses on Ninja Storm's combat system, which is simple but accessible, and uses four buttons. You'll attack with the circle button, jump with X, toss shuriken with square, and access your chakra to enhance your basic attacks. Overall, the system feels solid and responsive. Although there were aspects of the control system that reminded us of the recent Dragon Ball Z game, Ninja Storm has a unique feel to it that appears to offer more user-controlled options in battle.

The game's presentation sticks faithfully to the sights and sounds of its source material. The character models feature nuanced cel-shading that captures the look of the anime. The environments look clean and serve as a good framework for the action. The various attacks and animations for all of the characters offer a host of subtle touches that give the motion during combat a surprisingly elegant look. And the special effects and over-the-top animations during battle and for everyone's special attacks were impressive complements to the fluid action. The demo highlights one of the little audio touches that CyberConnect2 is putting in for fans: Japanese and English voice work for the characters. The use of the anime voice actors and assorted sound effects from the anime should please fans looking for authenticity.

You can unleash Naruto's mighty ninja powers when the game ships later this year.
You can unleash Naruto's mighty ninja powers when the game ships later this year.

Based on this small slice of the action in Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm, we're anxious to get our hands on the full game. The fighting system has a nice, tight feel to it that we're eager to explore. The game is confidently capturing the feel of the anime so far, which leaves us hungry to see more. The demo will be available in the coming weeks on the PlayStation Network. Look for more updates on Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm in the next few weeks at E3. The game is currently slated to ship later this year exclusively for the PlayStation 3.

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Avatar image for sweet1234

Man can barely wait for this game they sure know how to get people interested....

Avatar image for dj_c4

LOL Agreed. What a tease. They released this demo so early. But my god is it and awesome glimpse at the game to come. *sigh* Is it October yet?

Avatar image for silentbreaker

this is gay I can't wait two months! they should have at least put one more playable character on the demo >=/

Avatar image for ultima_weapon21

i got the demo today and THIS GAME IS GONNA BE SIK!! i LOVE the animations and the movements it feels SO smooth kinda like assasins creed where it all just flows together.this is a MUST for naruto fans and PLS i know that cartoon network IS NOWHERE close to releasing shipudden BUT can we get a shipudden GAME LIKE THIS ONE SOON PLS!!

Avatar image for burstlimit514

it is sopposed to come out the 18th dang. thts tomorrow.

Avatar image for courtneya3

the demo is supposed to be up.......and it isnt......angry this makes me

Avatar image for Uncle_Rell

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

Avatar image for Uncle_Rell

when this game out come out is going 2 b awesome

Avatar image for 0201693

As someone who has followed the anime in Japanese audio, i'm very relieved to hear the original japanese voice overs are included as i think the english voice overs did a very poor job of portraying the charactersin the english dubbed series.

Avatar image for LordReithgar

Well it would be a surprise that we can't take him, he's been a playable character for the past 2 games now

Avatar image for burstlimit514

ya i think Itachi is playable i think i saw him in a trailer.The newest one on G4

Avatar image for singerr

somewone nows if you can be Itachi ??

Avatar image for singerr

this game looks awesome cant wait whe it comes out

Avatar image for theman0077

people exciting news new awakenings: 1. Neji (byakugan) 2. Naruto (kyuubi form and one tailed form) 3. Sasuke (Sharingan, CS1 and CS2) 4. rock lee (1st gate, 5th gate and loopy fist) 5. choyi (Butterfly choji) 6. gaara (shukaku) thats all the information i can give you all. =]

Avatar image for eddyissa

sonicx03.... well granted that anime producers definitely prefer ps3... mi not too sure i would want to see this particular game come out on to the 360... from what ive seen so far the makers are pushin the ps3 processing engine to get the best results.. if they were to port it over.. what might turn up would be a shoddy effort which lags online each time naruto uses his multi shadow clone jutsu.. NOT pretty. as for the game.. looks awesome.. im going to be over at my friends house everyday playin his ps3 when it comes. ps... im looking forward to the review as well.. the gamespot peple seem well... a bit clueless.. sakura the gal pal... team leader "guy".... tsk.. poor "guy"

Avatar image for sonicx03

Why are all these Naruto games coming out just for the PS consoles? Don't these developers know that there is also a rabid Naruto fanbase that has an Xbox 360 only? I can't afford all the Playstation consoles. It makes me mad that most anime based games skip out on the Xbox completely. It took Ubisoft, a company that develops titles primarily for Western audiences, to put out a Naruto for Xbox. Its like a slap to the face for Xbox owners who also likes anime.

Avatar image for d1ogo_med

Finally a great game of the serie, and the image looks pretty awesome! But the question still remains, can the english voice beat the japanese? cuz in my opinion the japanese is a whole lot better, when the full game will be available?

Avatar image for GunGriffin

I for one will play with the English VOs because I don't understand Japanese and I also don't get the different emo set they use. Not that I hate Japanese VOs I just perfer the way i hear them first. To me that means English VOs. But still this game is going to rock! I hope the demo gets out soon! I wan't to play Naruto and own some noobs! LOL! Another thing I hope is that this has a strong online componant to it. CyberConnect2 has been doing a great job with Naruto as of late. Their PSP outing with NUNH2 was kick butt! And ten times better then Ubisofts crap lets pump out a new Naruto game each month! junk............ BTW did you know Ubisoft no longer publishes, or is even envovled in Naruto games any more? Bandai and VizMedia took the rights away from them and sold them to CyberConnect2 and so fare it's been a great move. From the start on the PSP CyberConnect2 has had Japanese VOs in their versions of Naruto their Graphics rock, and they show alot of promise as a game developer!

Avatar image for Outer_Raven

Can´t wait for the full game! Jeremiah's right, I don't think anyone is going to play with english voice, since japanese sounds a lot better.

Avatar image for mushroomslave7

looks good, m getting a ps3 soon and this looks like a pretty good fighter, wonder f L be better den ultimate ninja

Avatar image for akuya32

The demo was pretty good. The only problem I have with it is the controls are a little to simple. It plays well and looks good. I might buy this at launch once there is more information on the game.

Avatar image for jeremiah06

lol I wonder if anyone is going to play with the English voice actors? but when is this demo available

Avatar image for Tregster

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

Avatar image for Tregster

I seen the trailer for this. It's like you're playing the anime. Awesome stuff ^_^ It's ABOUT TIME on the Japanese voice option!!

Avatar image for LSS_Broly29

Finally! A Naruto game with some depth on Playstation! Ultimate Ninja was alright for casual fan fare, however if this is the new formula for the series, Dragonball will not be the only anime fighting game I will own! It sucks about the online play, Hopefully the story mode will be solid enough without some form of online play. I know some D/C is planned but I don't know if that's going to cut it, especially with the online on Naruto Rise of a Ninja.

Avatar image for MesterLuxord

I want that game !!! Nice grafics its like playing on anime episode xD

Avatar image for theman0077

but you just bought qore episode 2 and played?

Avatar image for marcl18123

This demo is freaking sweet, only thing disappointing is that there isn't anyone around to beat the crap out of. Cpu barely fights back (but it is a demo, so its probably easy on purpose). Anyways i so can't wait till it comes out---->day 1 purchase And yes I'm a Naruto fan so that may make me a little bias but I'm also a fighting game junkie favs include Tekken, Soul Caliber, Virtua Fighter and Marvel vs Capcom series

Avatar image for theman0077

july 17 is the day the demo will be released right?

Avatar image for Sulima

I have to say - the demo is freakin awsome. Very short unfortunately since you only get 2 chars, but the combat and visuals are beutiful. I am definitely sold and will be getting the full game when it comes out. AWSOME looking game.

Avatar image for Macdaddy0

haha, too bad shippuden wont be out till middle if not the end of 2009. Depends on if they keep showing 2new here or 1new per week. Ohh well, I just cant wait until they catch up to where japans at, the games will be even better to match how well the characters have.

Avatar image for sand_king_gaara

I don't have a PS3 but I bought a WII and DS for Pokemon and now I'm waiting for Naruto but if this game is over 9.4 I'll buy the console and game because I'm a really big fan.

Avatar image for Sulima

You have to download the July issue of Qore in order to get the Naruto demo, or just wait till the end of July when it is made available to everyone for free on PSN Store.

Avatar image for theman0077

but you just download episode 2 right? and how did it feel to play it?

Avatar image for alishaikh199

I have the Demo and let me say, IT'S **** AWESOME. BEST GAME EVER. I have Qore though.

Avatar image for theman0077

does anybody know how to download the demo?

Avatar image for deactivated-5925dfb1d1fe6

It looks waaaay better than Rise of a Ninja graphically. I just wish they'd release more info about the exploration part of the game, but whatever.

Avatar image for _RA0_

looks like rise of the ninja from xbox360

Avatar image for OptimusMegatron

Wow man! Cant wait for this!!

Avatar image for qzzzzzzzzz

nerutu sand ninjas

Avatar image for kilik22

so does this mean that if this is a hit, they'll make da next sequel will be da "shippuden" series?

Avatar image for Becent

MetalMan im sorry a port of what? I find it hard to believe ya since this is an exclusive....please research at least a bit so you dont sound a lil stupid..but thats just my advice

Avatar image for MetalMan300

Seems good. But really, another port? The PS3 is slowly becoming the PortStation3.

Avatar image for sauke2099

WOW man the graphics are incredible i mean look at the way the clothes moves and the expressions are precise

Avatar image for Arctic_Rush

yep it has Japanese voices

Avatar image for ghostlvl9

I just hope for Japanese voice acting. The American versions are terrible.

Avatar image for Sony-tha-champ0

best naruto game ever ! oh wait,i cant say anything unless i get it first,lets hope its not like that "haze game >_>"

Avatar image for deactivated-594be627b82ba

i have no idea how far the anime is in north america because I read the manga and watch the anime sub, but isn't time for a shippuden game already? But anyways this game look pretty cool

Avatar image for gangstamario1

This looks awsome i cant wate till it comes out i mean seriously they atcually move like they do in the episodes and books the other ones made them look disabled and slow but this is sweet they look awsome realistic to cant wait.

Avatar image for laperikein

nice game but i like the most the shippuden games already played and its amazing having the new characters including sasuke and naruto grow up with the new abilities hope sony will launch them in no time for ps3