By Jason Van Horn from mpogd.com
I followed Naruto and Bleach for quite a long time, but then Naruto got changed to another station, Bleach got moved to a different time, and I missed so many episodes I don't know who is who know or what's been happening. Luckily, you won't need to know any of the storylines or even be all that familiar with the characters of the two franchises to enjoy Pockie Ninja, but it certainly doesn't hurt matters if you do. Though I loathe the game's synthesis systems with the fiery anger of a thousand suns, it's still a fun browser-based game that both fans and non-fans alike should enjoy.
One thing that's slightly disappointing about the beginning of the game is that none of the A-list characters from Naruto or Bleach are available from the start, but instead you've got mostly B (at best) or C-list characters who I'm willing to bet a lot of people won't know unless they're huge fans of the franchises. I followed both shows for a while and there are a bunch of people - mostly on the Bleach side - that I'm unfamiliar with and their alternate versions are completely unknown to me. If you're a fan you should still find someone you know and like or at least be able to pick someone based on how they look.
The game features two primary ways in which to play the game. The first is the questing system, which acts like the questing system in any other game out there. You get a quest, deliver something, meet someone, kill something, and then talk to someone to claim your reward. Given the way the system is setup, it's very easy to jump back and forth around the map and instantly teleport to where your enemy is or the NPC you need to talk to. Furthermore, you don't have to run around looking for monsters, as they're all attacked by using a pull down menu that's attached to the picture of the creature you want to fight. After you've selected your monster you'll then watch them battle it out until only one of you is left standing. If you want to farm a creature with little effort while you do something else, you can do a Chain Attack, which lets you fight a character multiple times in a row without you needing to individually issue any commands; it just takes longer than usual, but you can spend real world money (or coupons you get that act like real money) to instantly finish the task in a second. When you're out in the field where you can freely choose monsters to fight, you can also explore the area by clicking on the glowing part of the screen and then flipping over a card to see what you've won or encountered, and there are boss monsters that sporadically appear that you can fight if you have the required item. One nice feature about the questing system is that you can spend real money (or the coupons) to put healing and mana items into a special container so that you instantly apply them each time you leave a battle, so it really keeps the game moving forward and doesn't make you stop and heal each time you're done fighting.
The game is surprisingly deep and it even features more things for you to do, such as taking repeatable quests from the bounty board for increased experience points and special items, training pets to help you in combat, and the different ways in which you can add stat bonuses to your items or socket them with gems to improve their functionality as well. The game doesn't always easily explain everything to you and I often found it best to jump in with a character, try stuff out, and just experiment and see what works. Once you get a grip on everything and have done some research and know how to properly use the synthesis system, then you delete that character or either start a character on a new server and then use what you've learned to start playing the game properly and without making silly mistakes.
If you're a fan of Naruto and/or Bleach then you'll probably love playing as and going up against some of your favorite characters from the anime and manga. Even if you don't know Sasuke from Sakura, Pockie Ninja does so many things right that I'd even suggest it to people just looking for a good, free-to-play, browser-based game. I just wish Orange Suits weren't so freaking hard to obtain.
You can read full review here.
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