Expanding the Library
As a self-proclaimed connoisseur of anime, and more specifically the Naruto franchise, the announcement of the first three Ninja Storm games coming to Switch was a pleasant, yet unexpected, surprise. After all, what Naruto fan wouldn’t want to play through the entire storyline on a handheld device that will undoubtedly make battling against other players much more accessible? Then I began thinking about why release it now? And what does this adoption of an anime-based fighting game mean for future anime titles on the on the Switch?
For those that have not been keeping up with the rapid release of the Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm games, the series began as a reboot of the core Naruto fighting games. Making its debut on the PlayStation 3, Ninja Storm covers the original Naruto series while Ultimate Ninja Storms 2 and 3 allowed players to journey through the Shippuden era of the series. Shortly after announcing that the trilogy will be released on the Switch in Japan, Bandai Namco released a video announcing that the games will be headed to the west on April 26.
As one may expect from an anime fighter, the Ninja Storm games allow players to battle using various ninja from in the shinobi world, utilizing the vast amount of jutsu introduced in the anime and manga.
What makes this announcement so exciting for anime fans in particular, is the now glimmer of hope that the vast amount of anime games originally released for the PS4 will be re-released on Switch. Finally, players will be able to experience the epic adventure of the Attack on Titan games and may even fight to survive in the Danganronpa series. It also means that, thanks to the massive popularity of the Switch in both America and Japan, more anime games are likely in development for Switch as well as the darling PS4.
“In Japan, Nintendo sold 3.4 million Switch consoles in 2017,” Brian Ashcraft, reporter at Kotaku, said. “Website Nintendo Soup notes that during the PS4’s first year, Sony sold 920,000 consoles. Meaning? It looks like the Switch ended up outselling the PS4 three to one.”
The huge sales numbers of the Switch help explain why possibly the biggest selling anime game is being brought to the system. With One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 Deluxe Edition making its way to Switch, we’ll more than likely see the latest Sword Art Online game announced for a Switch re-release sometime in the near future. Fans are excited that the upcoming My Hero Academia fighting game will see a Switch release, and are hopeful about One Piece: World Seeker and Black Clover: Quarter Knights hopefully getting a Switch release, too.