Game Review: Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel (PS4)
07/04/2016 Leave a comment
When it comes to fighting games we only ever see the ‘traditional’ variations being released, such as Street Fighter and Tekken; but in recent years anime-based fighting games have recently started to make their way to the west with the likes of BlazBlue: ChronoPhantasma Extend, Guilty Gear Xrd -REVELATOR- and Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax all being released.
Well now it’s Marvelous’s attempted at joining in on the action; as they will be releasing the collaberation themed fighting game Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel onto the PS4 (and PS3). It sounds good; but is it? Well lets take a look in our review.
Developed by EXAMU / Nitroplus and Published by Marvelous Games Europe; Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel is the 2D Sprite-based fighting game that once again blends the reality of anime, Japanese-pop-culture and videogames into a single unitive title that actually isn’t half bad; once you ignore the games relatively basic nature.
There is no ignoring this fact; Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel offers a much more ‘basic’ and ‘doujin’ like experience than other sprite based arcade fighters on the market, such as BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma Extend or Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax; but what Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel does offer is instead an interesting storyline and a relatively unique selection of characters to choose from.
As with any fighting game the enjoyment comes from the social interaction with opponents through online, or local, battles; and while Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel provides plenty of this – with both online Local and Ranked as well as offline match types available – it also offers two relatively similar story modes; each of which are tailored to the twelve different characters available for selection.
For instance; the first story mode, which sees eight fights sandwiched in between visual novel styled dialogue, sees your chosen character battle their way through different worlds in an attempt to restore balance and order to the universe. The second storyline however follows a similar path but instead continues it with a slightly different array of opponents at a slightly higher difficulty level. Once again each fight featured in this ‘Other Story Mode’ sees visual novel styled dialogue play out the story for you; with Super Sonico acting as your guide to the worlds issues. I could detail the story here; but that would just spoil the fun of discovering it for yourself.
It’s not a complicated tale, such as the one found within BlazBlue: ChronoPhantasma Extend; but its enough to warrant the existence of multiple universes forming (i.e. different franchises) together into a single universe. Ironically enough however it is also nice to see the attention to detail that EXAMU/Nitroplus have gone to in order to make sure each ‘main character’ feels truthful to their initial source material. Confused? Well Sabre, the servant from Fate/Stay Night franchise, acts as though she must return to her world in order to retrieve the holy grail for her wish; but it is her mannerism and presentation that feel exactly like they do from the series she is based from. This same principle can also apply to the other twelve characters included in the game.
Despite the two story modes, and the attention to detail with each characters back-story, there are only twelebe characters available to choose from, with another two being added as paid DLC Content. However just like in Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax another selection of characters, in this case 28, are available as support characters and up to two can be selected per fight with each providing a different type of support for the player.
The idea is that once your support gauge has been filled you can select a support character to jump and help; and yes they are actually quite effective. This is where Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel receives most of the support from other anime/manga companies under the same label; as characters from Psycho-Pass, Gargantia, Super Sonico, Expelled in Paradise and even School Live, are available for selection. You could say that the support cast has more notoriety than that of the playable character list; which is an odd choice but at least there is a nice variety to be had in both forms of character selection menus.
Let’s be clear here; Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel is a 2D Sprite-based fighter with support mechanics and as such the game falls in-line with traditional fighting games with three different types of attack (High, Mid, Low), block and support action being usable during a fight. As you would expect by pressing (mashing) these buttons together combos and alternate types of attacks and be performed; with special abilities being activated once the Special Guage has been charged. Anyone who has played BlazBlue, Street Fighter or even Guilty Gear will easily become accustomed to this games fighting mechanics and those who felt disappointed with Dengeki Bunko’s Fighting mechanics will be glad to hear that Nitroplus opts for a more rewarding combo system. No quick-combo/simple-combos exist here; it’s all traditional button presses and timing; the same can also be said for the Special Attacks as while they are easy enough to pull off (using similar button prompts to Street Fighter) they do require the right timing in order to get the best hit.
From my experience Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel is a progressive step-up from Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax; it’s a nice entry in for newcomers to fighting games while veterans will find it relatively easy – and thus it has a nice balance shrouded in anime goodness. Rounding off this anime-themed-fighting-game is the inclusion of Score Attack, Training and Gallery; each of which add some additional game-time to what’s already a relatively long experience and each utilise features found within other gameplay modes.
Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel may offer a relatively basic and simplistic game, especially the main menu and loading-screens which look horrendous, but underneath this is a budding fighting game that deserves your undivided attention. Basically it’s great; but with a bit of extra care it could have been a lot better!
Nitroplus Blasterz: Heroines Infinite Duel is now available for the PS4 within the UK and Europe.