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Now, more than ever, it"s a good time to catch up on your backlog of games. Social distancing and self-quarantining has been oddly enough a fantastic boost for new releases. And, a line of games that has a deep well of playtime with a new sequel coming out just this next week is the One Piece: Pirate Warriors games.
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Pirate Warriors 4, in particular, is dropping on March 26th (27th for PC) and it seems like a big jump forward for the franchise. Frankly, it"s been five years since the last game so we"re hoping they learned how to fix a large portion of the bugs and mechanical issues from the previous interactions. Let"s look at the biggest examples.
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First and foremost what needs to be changed in PW4 is the multitude of uninterruptible cinematics and cutscenes throughout any of the modes. Kizuna Rush, Kizuna Attack, Ultimate Attacks, Treasure Events, even Story Cutscenes. All of these are most unavoidable during normal play and frequently interrupt the satisfying combat.
The story cutscenes are made even worse by the fact that many players frequently experienced missing cutscenes or black screens on the PC version. We liked the combo attacks that the Kizuna system introduced, but just let us choose if we want to skip them or not!
Another huge issue that players had with the PC port of Pirate Warriors 3 is the save data. Protecting the players save data has to be of the utmost priority, right behind making sure the game works. But, even in 2020, players who are going back to experience the franchise before PW4 comes out are realizing that their save data has been corrupted, deleted, or more.
Plus, overwriting Save Data is much too easy and can be done accidentally. If a game has an option to overwrite data, it should make the player agree to it at least twice just to make sure it wasn"t an accidental press, and PW3 doesn"t do that.
Okay, so here"s the thing about Pirate Warriors 3 for Steam, it"s a bad port. In fact, it"s kind of awful. But, all could be forgiven except for one thing, the absolute nightmare we have to go through to use a controller with it on Steam.
The game doesn"t seem to recognize X-input controllers by default, and it wasn"t until Steam"s Big Picture Mode started helping that we even played the game. Basically, players have to always launch the game from BPM on Steam and try out a variety of solutions until they stumble upon one that happens to work for them. It"s absolute nonsense.
7 Let Us Choose A Speed For In-Game Dialog
We get it, allowing players to skip the cinematics for Ultimate Attacks and Kizuna Rush"s seems a bit extreme. But, if they"re going to do it, they might as well allow us to speed up the in-game dialog as well, right? When playing any Pirate Warriors game, your chosen character and a variety of NPC"s in the mission will almost constantly barrage you with quips and dialog bubbles throughout each mission.
And, if you get really good at doing missions quickly, these info pop-ups and dialog bubbles will stack up and just keep going and going to catch up with your play speed. We get that enemy spawns depend on these prompts, but maybe three different speeds would be possible?
One of the best aspects of any One Piece game is the dedication of the developers to include all the little lore aspects and gimmicks of each character. And the Pirate Warriors series, in particular, seems to nail it better than most other games we"ve seen. Usually, it"s just subtle things like Luffy not being hit by Enel"s electric attacks or Chopper being immune to Hancock"s DF power because he"s an animal.
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But, sometimes it has a big impact, such as Sanji"s inability to hit a female character. It shows great dedication to the lore but makes him nigh-unplayable in most missions. We love these gimmicks being in the game, so just give us an option to turn them off if they affect gameplay too much.
5 Don"t Restrict Form/Transformations To Kizuna State
It already seems like they"ll be fixing this in the fourth installation, but we want to talk about it just to make it clear in case they don"t. The One Piece IP has always had characters that had different forms, starting all the way back with the introduction of the blue-nosed reindeer, Tony Tony Chopper.
Nowadays, there are a lot of them such as Luffy, Capone Bege, Franky, and even Carrot. So, we need moves in-game that let us "change forms". Pirate Warriors 3 attempted this by allowing characters to form change during their Kizuna Rush, whether it was Logia types or just transformation users. Now, in PW4, it seems like there will be separate skills players can equip to transform for a period of time in-mission.
A lot of this article has been us ranting about the bugs of a game from 2015, and while that is still fair, it"s a bit non-essential (especially with current world events). But, we"ve got to eat, so why don"t we talk about hypothetical mechanics for a minute. Haki, the mechanic of the One Piece universe formally introduced after the timeskip, should be more integral to the core gameplay.
There were examples of it in past games such as Shanks"s rightfully overpowered moveset or the Conqueror"s Power skill, but there should be more. Haki is a part of every single confrontation in the story now, so Observation, Armament, and Conquerors should all be crucial aspects to the characters that can wield them.
3 No More RNG Coins Or Luck-Based Grinding
This is, by far, the worst aspect of Pirate Warriors 3 and by extension the older games. In Pirate Warriors 3, level two ultimate attacks, costumes, and even the stats of individual characters were all influenced by "coins" that players would pick up from defeating characters/missions.
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Most of them were relatively easy to obtain, but many of the "Gold Coins" that were required to limit break characters or max out their stats were restricted to the Dream Log. But, they weren"t restricted to particularly hard missions or anything, rather they were a random drop from defeating specific islands in that mode. And, most of the time, they wouldn"t even drop! It was a horrible implementation quite frankly.
Maybe this was just an aspect that bothered us, but the cinematic camera in most of the PW games has always bugged us. Never take control of the camera away from the player, it always feels forceful and unnecessary.
PW games do this whenever a player destroys a huge amount of grunts/enemies with a single attack. But, If you"re using a move that takes a second to activate or doesn"t hit until after you"ve moved on such as Fujitora"s comets or Whitebeards Shockwaves, then all this camera does is whip your view around 360 degrees. So, trying to grind out missions as Admiral Fujitora in the late stages of Nightmare Log becomes a constant battle against the camera and we need it to be fixed by PW4.
1 Accurate Sizes For Characters
And finally, let"s talk about character sizes, which are all over the place in One Piece. Whitebeard, in canon, is 21 feet tall. Is that absurd? Oh totally. Is it accurately shown in the games? Not really. that would be fine if Whitebeard was still much bigger than most other characters, but he and Doflamingo are around the same size in PW3.
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For reference, Donquixote Doflamingo is 10 feet tall, Whitebeard is again 21 feet tall. The String-String fruit user is supposed to tower over Luffy who is then supposed to cower underneath Whitebeards shadow. But in-game, they all look around the same. Seems PW4 is looking to fix that considering both Big Mom and Kaido look absolutely gigantic in-game.