Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm is very clever in targeting its intended audience. It should come as no surprise that, like the majority of licensed games, the fanbase is Namco Bandai's target. In this sense, the developer has succeeded. For those not familiar with the programme, its sharp visuals and odd humour are the foundations of what makes the show so appealing to a worldwide audience. To ensure this is carried over into the videogame space, the visuals and art style are excellent. It is almost as if Namco has reached into a television set, ripped the environment straight from the Naruto cartoon and laid it back down to rest on a Blu-ray disc. Furthermore, the animations don't let the visual effect down in the slightest and the two combined allow Ultimate Ninja Storm to blur the line between game graphics and high quality anime. If you fancy boasting just what your HDTV and PS3 can do (after showcasing MGS4, naturally) you could do far worse.
Unfortunately, this is where all praise ends. While the odd besotted youth will feel satisfied with their purchase as their eyes are wowed by Naruto's on-screen antics, it's fair to say a larger portion of gamers will be baffled by what they're experiencing. In an attempt to be a 'Jack of all trades', Naruto manages to end up being a confused, muddled mess that riddles you with constant tedious tasks and a very inconsistent fighting mechanic. During the first hour or so this is excusable and can even be enjoyable – wandering around Konoha Village is initially entertaining – but it soon becomes apparent that every mission and encounter is essentially identical to the last; the only difference being a change of scenery and an elevated level of supposed purpose."