Where were you when JUMP FORCE was announced? I know where I was: in my room, getting ready for bed, theorizing what a spiritual successor to J-Stars Victory Vs. would be like, and how I would make it. Then, out of the blue, AfroSenju uploaded a video reacting the announcement of JUMP FORCE, Bandai Namco’s contribution to Weekly Shonen JUMP‘s 50th anniversary. And I was shocked. I didn’t think Bamco could pull it off, considering they launched a few mobile games in Japan, which have a lot of content. But hey, I welcomed this, with open arms, and was excited to see what the future held.
WHAT THE FUTURE HELD…
Then they announced 1-2 characters bi-weekly, then monthly, then weekly when the game came around to release. I mean, that’s fine, the roster isn’t EVERYTHING in a fighting game, what matters is the gameplay after all…
Oh, you can create your own custom character? Okay, I guess. I mean, that was cool for the Xenoverse games, and Shinobi Striker, which I didn’t buy, but I don’t see how or why anybody would want to create a character when the whole appeal to this entire game is that it’s celebrated 50 years of Shonen Jump, but whatever…
Kane and Galena? Why are you putting original characters in an anniversary made for anime fans? Is anyone even going to play with them?
…WHO THE FUCK IS RYO SAEBA?!
Hold on now, Asta… Izuku? Kurapika? JOTARO?! KONO DIO?!?!?! HOLY SHIT, THIS IS GOING TO BE THE BEST ANIME CROSSOVER GAME EVER MADE! OKAY BAMCO, WHO ELSE YOU G-
I-Is this a joke? You’re joking, aren’t you, Bamco? AREN’T YOU?!
They were not joking. That’s the actual roster.
So… you have hundreds of series to choose from… and you only choose 17. And waste 2 character slots on people no one are ever going to play as… and half the roster is people are from Naruto, One Piece, Dragon Ball…
Okay, so the roster’s a bit underwhelming, but hey, the story may as well be good, right? I mean, it’s a bit too serious for my tastes, but Jump Force’s advertising focuses on nothing BUT the story. Unlike Dragon Ball FighterZ, which was focused on “Gameplay first, Story later,” and it worked! People bought the game in droves! Here, it’s the story and NOTHING ELSE that was advertised. So let’s see how the story will play out, I mean, it has to be the most worked on, right?
The very second you press “START”, the game launches you into the story. No options, no customization, no nothing. It’s just start, and into the story you go. This is frustrating, because, as a PC Gamer, the very first thing that I do is customize my settings so the game can run on my machine.
Anyway, once the story begins, the world is immediately destroyed by things called “Venoms”, which are another term for “Evil CaCs. Goku fights Frieza for what feels like the 90th time, and a stray Death Beam causes your CaC to get hit. Somehow. Trunks brings you back to life with a MacGuffin, and you create your character. And they will NOT. STOP. MOVING. After you create your character, and fight off the rest of the Evil CaC’s, you go back to the base with Goku and Trunks, where Naruto and Luffy are there, for some reason. No, no explanation for why they’re there, other than crossover into the real world.
After you meet with Director Glover, you get to decide which team you’re on. Alpha (Goku), Beta (Luffy), or Gamma (Naruto). Does it matter which one you join?
NO. No, it doesn’t matter at all.
After that’s done, you go around, fighting Evil CaC’s, recruiting other people into the Jump Force (or J-Force, even though the subtitles clearly say “Jump Force”), and it is the most tedious shit. Here’s how every recruitment goes:
Glover: Here’s a person, they possessed. Stop em
[Goes to enemy]
Partner: Hey stop it
Partner: Come on, (Y/C), fight him
[Insert Fight Here]
Enemy: [Knocked Out]
Partner: (Y/C), get the fucking cube
Enemy: Wha’ happuh?
Partner: You were possessed, now come with us
[Goes back to base]
Partner: Join us
Rinse and repeat, about 30 times. The most infuriating one has to with Kenshiro, because after 1 line of dialogue with Trunks, he joins the Jump Force, no struggle, no threat to refuse, he just joins because “50 YEARS OF JUMP!”
Another problem I have with the characters is that they have no personality. I mean, they get one or two moments here and there, BEFORE they’re recruited into Jump Force, but other than that, once they join, NOTHING. All of them might as well be cardboard cutouts, with how little personality they show. Izuku has self-doubt issues about being a hero, and Jotaro’s a brash, rude Japanese high-schooler who has his moments of caring for others, but you wouldn’t know this fact until, you know, YOU WATCHED/READ THEIR SERIES.
Mira and Towa, because that’s what they are, they’re fucking Mira and Towa, and I refuse to call them anything else, are the most unnecessary additions in this game celebrating “50 YEARS OF JUMP”. All they do is take away from the ACTUAL JUMP villains, you know, the ones we’re supposed to be celebrating?! Their designs, courtesy of Dragon Ball and Dr. Slump creator, Akira Toriyama, are literally “Hit with Cell’s armor” and “Towa with Wings”. Maybe he Toriyama saw the script and said, “Okay, if they aren’t going to try, I won’t either.” And that’s not even getting into the final boss, which is completely pathetic.
The final boss is Director Glover, who is Prometheus. And, well, he wants to become a God. Y/C defeats him, even though Goku, a universe buster, and Naruto, a (possible) small planet buster, are in the same room, and could probably sneeze and kill him, and that’s the end of the entire game.
“But hey! What does Light Yagami do? He was shown at the end of the reveal trailer!”
Well, the devs answered that question for you! He does…
All he does is pick up the dark MacGuffin at the end of the game, and the story mode just ends. No fight, no anything. The game ends on Blue Jiren.
“50 YEARS OF FUCKING JUMP!”
I mean, seriously, did someone look at Sonic Forces, and say, “Oh, we can make a game that’s 10x as disappointing as that!”
But that’s not even getting into the worst part about this game…
Simply put, the cutscenes are the absolute shits. I swear, everybody either looks stiff as fuck, because they’re animated so poorly, it looks like Sonic ’06 or MvC:I at times! Even the facial expressions are terrible! Or, moreso, the LACK of facial expressions. Everybody looks pissed off for no reason, even when their character is SMILING! Is it really that hard to rig facial bones?! The WWE Video Games don’t even have this problem, and they’ve been glitch-ridden for almost a decade! This is bad, because some of the more expressive characters, such as Asta, are completely screwed over by having one expression!
Don’t believe me? Well, just look at these:
The models even suffer from clipping issues, such as Piccolo’s cape, Asta’s cloak, Jotaro’s jacket, etc. And I can’t find the tweet right now, but someone even got Hancock’s whole body IN THE FUCKING NUDE.
It’s such a shame that the final product has so many problems, because the game itself is actually pretty fun!
The gameplay is actually the best part about the game. It’s basically the Xenoverse series, if the Xenoverse series had about 95% less flying. Super Attacks are fun to pull off, and Ultimate Attacks look flashy as all hell. It’s just a shame that a decent game is surrounded by a load of shit!
Jump Force had a chance to be a good game. It was (allegedly) in development for 4 whole years.
I seriously hope that at some point, Spike Chunsoft just gave up, and half-assed the game to the point where Bamco didn’t care, and they just released the game because “50 YEARS” or whatever. Because this is not an anniversary game. This is a glorified commerical for anime fans.
You wanna know something? Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 went through a 6-month delay, after the developer said that they needed to polish the game, so everyone would be satisfied. The end result was: THAT GAME LOOKED AND PLAYED FUCKING GORGEOUS.
This is a game in which Bamco wanted to prove how low Anime fans could take their expectations. Well, I have standards, Spike Chunsoft, and I want to do better. I refuse to spend money any of your Bamco-published games from now on. If you want to release another Danganronpa game, so be it, but I am never touching JUMP FORCE with a 10 1/2 foot pole for the rest of my life.
As a matter of fact, I dare somebody, anybody, to create a game in honor of Shonen Jump’s anniversary, and write a better story than they did. Because the time and resources were there, it’s just in execution, they ultimately ended up shitting the bed.
It’s kind of sad that the best thing about this game was it’s E3 announcement.
FINAL GRADE: D+
+Asta & Izuku in a game at one time
-Models have a permanent “pissed off” expression
-Characters are Boring
-Final Boss is a Joke
-50 YEARS OF JUMP.
If you want to
torture yourself play this game, JUMP FORCE is available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Mircrosoft Windows, via Steam.
Until next time, Stay Twisted.