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JoJo’s Bizarre Adventures Review

There are not many games with bizarre in the title, then again there are not many games as bizarre as this, a versus fighting game based on the Manga series, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventures.

With such a weird and strange back history to digest the first port of call really should be the story mode, as not only do you get a brief glimpse into the world of family JoJo but also this is where the majority of unlocks will occur. The story mode takes us through and brings us up to date with the goings on with the JoJo family line, starting off with Jonathan Joestar battling against the vampire menace Dio to his grandson Joseph Joestar taking on the mysterious Pillar Men and then onto more modern family members before going far back in time in an alternate reality with Johnny Joestar. Not only will the story mode unlock many characters for later modes but it also gives you a glimpse of the many characters and fighting styles available.

Though the characters border on insane, the gameplay turns out to be one of the better fighting games I have played on this generation. Fantastic visuals aside the fighting is fast and furious, utilizing a simple three button attack button setup that allows a wide selection of moves and specials. With over 40 fighters to choose from there are plenty of favourites to pick. To differentiate even further from one another and also any other fighting game the characters are split into different groups or stances. Some, like the Hamon technique allow extra powers to be charged up or the Stand, where the fighter will also use a spirit that appears behind your fighter like a shadow who allows you to pull off some even more insane and powerful moves. You even get to fight on horseback, yes you read that right, horseback, with a selection of characters from the latter episodes offer a first (to my knowledge) for a fighting game, with equine combos and special attacks a plenty as horse and rider battle it out; it sounds nuts but it really works.

It is not just your opponents and horses you have to worry about but also level hazards. Ranging from falling chandeliers and runaway cars and chariots, with luring unsuspecting fighters into these areas being quite rewarding.

The story mode battles also try and keep a resemblance of a plot, with battles being altered to make them feel like more than just another versus mode with extra secret goals and level rules, with goals like defeating your opponent within a certain time limit and pulling off certain moves to rules like constantly depleting energy as a result of an earlier wound or lowered defence. These rules can be quite troublesome; especially on the latter fights so the game also offers help with "cheat" cards. With the gold earned through fighting and completing secret missions you can purchase cards before each fight, with you able to stack benefits like health regeneration or a pre-loaded specials gauge to sway the fight in your favour. Whilst addressing the story side I will mention the only real disappointment in this game being the lack of cut scenes, with each fight interspersed with a brief but wordy description, it’s a bit static and it would have been great to have even some anime or in game graphics to make it less stale; it is a minor point which is a shame as the overall presentation is fantastic, using a cel shaded approach but also giving the characters real presence with an original art style, the game looks great and the camera manages to keep up with the unfolding frantic action, never dropping a beat even during the more frenzied special moves.

As you progress through the story mode you will slowly unlock all sorts of extra content from characters and arenas to music and artwork. Moving onto the campaign mode and there is even more to unlock here, though it is a little confusing at first but the general idea of it is that you spend energy searching for fighters, sometimes they will be avatars of other online players, other times they will be bosses who you need to whittle down across a series of battles to break them and then earn some special bonuses like new costumes and trash talking slogans which you can then go online to use against the rest of the world. I managed to get through a couple of bosses and avatars and earn plenty of customisable options for my fighters on just the regular energy bar however if you do wish to speed up the process you can use micro-transactions to speed up the recharge rate, though in game it is a bar per minute which I felt was more than enough.

Just when you think versus fighting games can’t offer any more JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: All Star Battle shows there is plenty of life left, offering a huge and varied roster of fighters and loads of modes to fight through.

Words by Ash Buchanan.

(Version Tested: PS3)


+ With arcade, story, campaign, training and online modes there is loads to do.
+ The campaign is due regular updates.
+ A great replacement for the Street Fighters and Tekkens.
+ Loads to unlock.


- The unfamiliar characters may put people off.

Edited On 29 Apr, 2014

( 3 )
Loli-Nox-Tan's avatar
Loli-Nox-Tan 3 years ago
Was on the fence about getting this since I want to read/watch JoJo's first. I'll need to do those sooner than expected it seems
Ash Buchanan's avatar
Ash Buchanan 3 years ago
The story was so nuts it made me grab the first volume
Loli-Nox-Tan's avatar
Loli-Nox-Tan 3 years ago
Well it looks like I'll be starting the Anime tonight. (Crunchyroll FTW) Sooner I do the sooner I can buy this

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