One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3

Game review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 Game Poster Image
Lots of fan service keeps this repetitive title afloat.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Though the bulk of the game involves typical "good vs. evil" plots, the main story follows Luffy as he works to realize his dream of becoming the Pirate King, building lasting friendships and helping others along the way. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Being pirates, Luffy and his allies follow their own moral code. In this case, that involves a strong belief in helping those in need, supporting "family" (in this case, family being the Straw Hat crew). Other playable characters include more morally ambiguous characters and even some series villains, which don't make for the best role models.

Ease of Play

Though there's a lot of simple, arcade-style button-mashing action, characters do have individual nuances and combos, which require more strategic thinking to use effectively. It's also important to keep track of specific objectives, which can be difficult during chaos on-screen.

Violence

Lots of nonstop, over-the-top violence, most of which centers on cartoonish melee combat, though some cut scenes depict characters getting shot and stabbed.

Sex

Some female characters show off an abundance of cleavage, and characters make occasional suggestive references.

Language

Occasional use of offensive words, such as "bastard."

Consumerism

The game is based on the popular One Piece franchise, which includes a host of manga and anime series, as well as toys, games, and other merchandise.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some characters shown smoking cigars.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 is an action-packed, beat-'em-up style of game based on the popular One Piece manga and anime series. Players must fight their way through waves of opposing armies, using a variety of over-the-top attacks, to achieve specific objectives. Though the main story follows the heroes' adventures, Free Play and Dream Log allows players to take on the role of a variety of One Piece characters, be they hero, villain, or something in-between. Some of the female characters are presented in revealing outfits, and occasional suggestive comments are peppered throughout the dialogue. Though the violence tends to be cartoonish in nature and lacking gore, some cut scenes do feature characters getting shot, stabbed, and killed.

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What's it about?

ONE PIECE: PIRATE WARRIORS 3 takes the popular series back to its first port of call, then sails right on through the history of Monkey D. Luffy and the rest of the Straw Hat Pirates. From Luffy's start in the Foosha Village all the way up to his most recent adventures on the island of Dressrosa, players will relive key moments in the franchise while battling against overwhelming forces in hand-to-hand combat. Players also can call upon fellow pirates in either split-screen or online co-op play and even send out a rescue call to get an assist online for those particularly difficult stages in the lives of the Straw Hats. 

Is it any good?

If you enjoy this anime and manga franchise, this adventure game is a treasure trove of fan-service goodies. The story, the characters, and the trivia alone make Pirate Warriors 3 a virtual encyclopedia of the continuing adventures of Luffy and his crew. It has an unquestionable wealth of content, but conversely, it's almost a pittance in substance. The gameplay gets repetitive very quickly. Even with unique combos and abilities exhibited by each playable character, after beating up the first thousand or so cloned cannon fodder, it's hard not to feel like you're just going through the motions.

Although the play is repetitive, high marks have to go to the game for managing to squeeze so much onto the screen at once. No matter how many enemies are surrounding you, not matter how elaborate your attacks are, and no matter how much is happening at any given time, the game never skips a beat. The action stays fluid, the chaos stays frantic, and the visuals are always a colorful bit of anime-style eye candy. This is definitely the game One Piece fans have been clamoring for. For anyone else, though, Pirate Warriors 3 might have a difficult time staying afloat.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the violence in the game. Does the over-the-top, cartoonish nature of the fighting make the violence any less influential to your behavior?

  • Discuss the values of friendship and working as a team. How can people with diverse backgrounds and talents come together to form bonds of friendship and overcome obstacles?

Game details

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