One Piece Pirate Warriors 4 Review – Playstation 4 – 3 May 2020 – move aside Dynasty Warriors, the lead franchise is One Piece

During this COVID-19 lock down, I’ve been able to complete numerous titles. One game that I completed and earned the Platinum Trophy for is One Piece Pirate Warriors 4.

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One Piece Pirate Warriors 4 is another Dynasty-warriors like hack and slash game. It allows you to select from range of One Piece characters that you unlock to play in various 1 vs 1000 plus enemies, including gigantic enemies like Big Mom and Kaido. The game play is simplistic and mindless, yet it is fun to play.

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I found the visuals interesting in this game, from the colorful battlefields and vistas of the Whole Cake Island saga to the Wano Country saga. I found myself liking the aesthetics to the game and the graphical improvements to One Piece Pirate Warriors 3.

The developers managed to fix some of the characters heights in this game. One noticeable character they made taller and bigger is Whitebeard. I was impressed with how they incorporated these larger characters. In total, you have Whitebeard, Big Mom and Kaido as oversized characters who can rampage through the battlefield.

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The game adds plenty of new playable characters, like Katakuri, Carrot, Sanji’s sister Reiji and brothers Ichiji, Niji and Yonji, Kid, Hawkins and Bege. However, there are some notable characters that are no longer playable such as Garp, Megallan, Cesar and Eneru. The latter three do not make an appearance in the battlefield. Cesar does appear in a cut scene though.

The cut scenes between battles is a mix of static text, pre-rendered videos and dynamic scenes where characters are moving around and talking within a scene. I loved the pre-rendered videos and thought they should have focused on having more of those videos throughout the storytelling. If you have played all the prior Pirate Warriors game, you will notice a lot of recycled videos with slight touch ups.

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The story mode only covers six sagas and has an original saga for the Wano Country saga, which still is still to be completed as at May 2020. The story mode covers Alabaster, Enies Lobby, Marineford, Dressrosa, Whole Cake Island and Wano Country. There are around six missions in each of the sagas. Each following the story beats of the actual One Piece story. While the game does a good retelling of the story, you won’t get the whole picture as so many characters that are no playable or important are either given generic faces.

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The gameplay is similar to the prior games. You still use square for normal attacks and triangle to unleash different attacks. Unlike Pirate Warriors 2 and 3, there is no Kizuna attacks or rush in this game, so you won’t be calling in your allies to attack during battles. Instead, each character can assign attacks to R1 for ‘musou’-like attacks. You can load up with transformations or powerful attacks. For example, Luffy can transform into his Gear Four Bounce Man or Snake Man. Each transformation can be added to his R1. In many battles, you could have Luffy almost permanently be in a transformed state pounding enemies. I found both Gear Four states were hard to control since Luffy is almost in the air.

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Each character is given a specialty, such as Power, Technical, Speed or Sky. Sky introduces a new mechanic and allows long aerial combos. Reiji was my favorite aerial character as she was able to crowd control and keep enemies in the air for extended damage. I also found that Sanji’s post-timeskip was better since he turned from Speed to Sky.

In terms of character progression, there is a shared progression map for you to spend coins and berries leveling up. The share progression map allows all your characters to gain a powerful even if you haven’t used them yet. Each character has two personal progression maps which allow you to increase their stats, unlock and level-up skills and abilities.

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I found Chopper’s skill Doctors Tactics really useful, because it provided constant health regeneration during battles. You should also unlock Sabo for his Brothers Sake Cup skill which helps with results after battles.

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Unlocking the Platinum Trophy is not hard as more than 15% of people have already unlocked the trophy on the Playstation 4. I recommend jumping into a multiplayer session and playing with random people. It makes the battles go faster and the total killed in the results page is a total of all people’s kills.

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I really enjoyed the game. I found myself using Whitebeard a lot during the Platinum Trophy hunt while playing multiplayer

I’m looking forward to the additions of Smoothie later as a playable character and other additions.

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