All the Anime in the Palm of Your Hand
SIAMGAME’s Bleach 3D is based on one of the world’s most famous anime series. It follows the adventures of Ichigo Kurosaki, a high school student who obtains the powers of the Grim Reaper and has to defend humans from evil spirits. In short, it’s your standard crazy anime fare, filled with brooding protagonists and bubbly costars. It’s the perfect setting for a JRPG.
Fans of the Show will be Excited
Bleach 3D embodies the soul of the landmark anime series. The game begins with a prologue that acts as a quick tutorial. This mechanic is a smart way of introducing you to the world of Bleach and to the game’s controls. Here you learn how to move your player and battle a mini boss that’s more intuitive and complex than your standard mobile gaming villain. Afterwards you’re hurled straight into the story, jumping right into your new powers and duties of delivering souls to the afterlife. If you’ve never seen Bleach, there’s no need to worry; you’ll catch up. If you’re uninterested in the story, these cut-scenes can be skipped by tapping the button on the top right corner of the screen. Although they’re not great, they do show off the original show’s artwork and give some context to your protagonist’s story.
The controls are simple and almost feel as if you were holding a PS4 remote. There’s a joystick on your left and attack buttons on your right, which can be customized as you level up. Fights are straight forward, with opponents appearing by the dozen; during the best fights, you might find yourself smashing your smartphone in moments of stress. Mini bosses grow progressively stronger as the game develops, with the first couple being almost laughably easy. The more you play, the more individuated the monsters become, having eerie designs and complex moves that give Bleach 3D an air of the Persona video game series. It’s common to run into enemies that have three eyes, scary masks, and look like giant spiders or fallen angels.
Fun JRPG-Like Design
The game is long, having several chapters in story mode and plenty of challenges to keep players busy. While it’s easy to sweep by the first couple of chapters, the more you play the stronger your enemies become. Some battles require your protagonist to be of a certain power level, making you grind (or purchase experience orbs) in order to confront them. While there’s nothing wrong with a good grinding session, Bleach 3D asks for a lot of it, with most visuals remaining the same. After a while, it made it hard for me to stay engaged and to experience the story in full.
Bleach 3D had me wishing I could play it on console, with a budget that allowed it to be more. It has the building blocks for something great but it’s held back by a story that we’ve experienced a dozen times. Although the Android game is rudimentary and comes with its fair share of bugs, the battle remains satisfying.
Bleach 3D is a great compliment for fans of the story, giving them the chance to live through some of the anime’s greatest moments. Although there’s no narrative innovation, bugs that slow down the game and a fair amount of grinding, it’s a satisfying experience for a JRPG fan.