Truth be told, I have never seen an episode of Bleach. I know almost nothing about it, other then the fact that Ichigo and his friends fight evil spirits and demons. I may not know much about the premise, but that didn’t stop me from having a decent time with Bleach: Soul Resurreccion.
Most people cringe when someone says “Dynasty Warriors,” and in all honesty, Bleach does share some of the same characteristics of a Dynasty Warriors game. You will have a ton of enemies coming at you at one time, and with a quick combo, they will all go down rather easily. There are mini boss characters you’ll fight that put up a bigger challenge and, of course, big boss fights. What Bleach has that differs from your run of the mill Dynasty Warriors game is the versatile combo system that involves normal attacks, special attacks and finishers. Instead of mashing away on the square button, you can change it up and do an air combo after your initial attacks, or you could use energy special attacks to launch enemies in the air, followed by a devastating finisher.
The game breaks down into 3 modes of play: Story mode, Mission mode, and Soul Attack mode. The story mode consists of 14 chapters that have you using a wide variety of characters in the Bleach universe. It is a bit short. When playing on normal difficulty, it will more than likely take you about 4 hours to finish all the chapters. Story mode is not the biggest part of Bleach. Mission mode is where you’ll spend most of your time. In mission mode, you can use any character you’d like from the roster. Some missions will give you a certain objective to accomplish or have special rules like “jumping is disabled during mission.” It seems like you’re always unlocking new characters and models while you’re playing the game, and let me just say, there are a lot of characters to play as in Bleach.
While killing baddies, you’ll gain soul points. These green orbs will serve as your experience points that you can use to upgrade the characters. You can gain more soul points by keeping your attack multiplier up in the triple digits. The more hits you land without stopping, the more soul points you’ll get. You also gain more points at the end of a mission depending on how well you performed. The level up system is a grid where you will unlock new sections that give higher attack power, more vitality, or even new abilities. Think of it like Final Fantasy X’s Sphere Grid system. There are so many upgrades for each character that fully leveling up one character could take hours.
The game does look really amazing. Much like the Naruto games on the PS3, Bleach looks exactly like an anime with smooth animations and colorful visuals. On an HD television, you’d think you were watching a high quality episode of the show. On a more unfortunate note, the visuals may look amazing, but the environments almost never change. I honestly think there are only 4 or 5 areas in the entire game. Granted, the actual layout of the areas change, but you’re either in a desert, a city, or in a fortress.
While the combat can be mixed up and you’re allowed a ton of options, there is no denying the fact that Bleach can become repetitious over the course of a few hours, but there is enough here to keep the completionists busy for a long time. Just remember, the combat can get old after a while.
Bleach may be a short experience in story mode, but there are plenty of other things to do in the game that could easily last you 10 to 15 hours. The combat, while satisfying, can become tiresome. Also, if you’re not a fan of Bleach, or you don’t know much about the show or manga, you will have a very difficult time following this story. For the Bleach fans out there, there seems to be a ton of fan service for you. Yes, it may look like another Dynasty Warriors game, but that’s just on the surface. Underneath that exterior is a rather enjoyable and deep game if you allow it to pull you in.
Review copy provided by publisher.