Based on the popular Japanese manga written and illustrated by Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto tells the story of a young ninja boy coming of age, who aspires to one day be the head ninja (Hokage) in his village. Along with an equally popular animation often seen on Cartoon Network, Naruto can also be found on various gaming consoles, the latest being UN3 on Sony's Playstation 2 console. So for those of us itching for some Naruto action and do not own a 360, don't panic.
Though this PS2 title fails in comparison, technologically, to 360's Rise of the Ninja, this is still a good substitute to the $280 dollar next-gen system.
2We've not had a chance to really sink our teeth in this title as yet, so for now here's what we know already.
Naruto: Ultimate Ninja 3 sports quite possibly the largest roster of quirky ninja's from the series to date. From the dog loving Kiba to the bone chucking Kimimaro, UN3 presents well over 40 characters for your playing pleasure, including the first and second Hokage as well.
To complement the evolution of the animated series so far, players will have the opportunity to play in over 20 unique stages. And this time around Konoha village is a bit more jazzed up from its predecessors with a huge bonus, it's in 3D. You can now experience the village hidden in the leaves as it's meant to, like a true ninja, scaling rooftops, running on walls, etc. as you engage in a brand new, original, story arc.
To help you along the way, Namco Bandai has introduced some role-playing elements, like upgrading your character. Similar to Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3, you can upgrade characters' strength, defense, chakra, agility and even special abilities which lends itself quite nicely to being able to use those incredible summoning jutsu's which brings large creatures into the playing field as allies.
And no Naruto game would be complete without the ability to relive all the events leading up to and including Sasuke's (Naruto's best friend and worst enemy) rebellion against the leaf village.
Naruto: Ultimate Ninja 3 is definitely a game to look out for next month. It's scheduled for a March 25th release here in the States.