If near to nude ninjas and Dynasty Warriors-esque gameplay is your thing, look no further. With hilarious and ‘inventive’ mechanics, an overload of fan service and insane jiggle mechanics, this game surprisingly offers a lot in the hack ‘n’ slash department. Oh, and Senran Kagura: Estival Versus is tied together with visual novel sections, so if 24/7 combat isn’t your thing, then you’re in luck.
The game provides you with the ‘Kagura Millennium Festival’ story mode, Alongside this, there are also the Shinobi Girl’s Heart side stories and new missions with AI-controlled allies, all these new to the series. If you’re unfamiliar with series, there is zero explanation of who any of the characters are, and they constantly reference events from prior games, so either do your homework or be left in confusion. The different rival shinobi schools that are all very good friends are transported outside of reality to fight in the ‘Kagura Millennium Festival’. There actually is some character growth the story includes and with some heavily emotional themes like death and grief, which only grows more intense the longer the main storyline goes on. Although mixing this with crude humour at times feels awkward and a bit stale.
Alongside the ‘Kagura Festival’ story mode, there’s also the Shinobi Dojo where online battle play is available, with adjustable conditions and game modes including ‘capture the bra’ and ‘Shinobi Deathmatch’. These battles hosting up to 10 players. The game also provides a ‘dressing room’ mode where you can choose from the array of characters, dress them up or down in your chosen attire and take photographs. How lovely!
Robyn Goodall | @lilrobyngoodall