Naruto x Boruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections Review

Naruto x Boruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections Review
The OMG Review
Our review format is not your usual fare and we’ve broken it down into 3 very simple ratings!

“Buy it!” means that the game deserves a place in your collection. Be it day 1 or a slightly delayed purchase, it’s hard to go wrong with this title. In numbers, this is around an 8/10 and above.

“Wait for it…” means that while the game is good, it probably isn’t worth it at its day 1 price point. We suggest you wait for a sale before jumping in. In numbers, this is around a 5 – 7/10.

“Ignore it!” means that the game is not something we’d recommend playing, whether it be now or in the near future. Maybe ever. Let’s not even go to the numbers for this one.

Sneak Peek
  • Release Date: November 16, 2023
  • Platforms: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Switch, PC
  • Genre: Action Fighting Game
  • Similar Games: Ultimate Ninja Storm Series, My Hero One’s Justice
  • Price: starts at $59.99

Among the video games based on Naruto, the Ultimate Ninja Storm series is one that I have fond memories of. With its simple controls and amazing cel-shaded visuals that faithfully recreated the world of Naruto, it was pretty much a dream come true for fans of the anime, despite falling off my radar as the years went by.

The series has come a long way, bringing the epic shinobi battles to a 3D arena while elevating the experience with even better visuals, retaining its simple controls, and adding some interesting new modes. After Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 back in 2016, we finally have the latest entry in the long-running series.

Naruto X Boruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections feels both like a nostalgic trip and a new experience. It’s essentially the same game as it was before, which will bring a warm and fuzzy feeling of familiarity, all while adding some new features and bringing its largest ninja roster to date.

How does this measure up? Let’s find out!

Related – Let’s Unbox the Naruto X Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections Premium Collector’s Edition

Look and Fight like a Ninja

It took only a short while after booting up the game, but I’m still amazed at how simple it was to pick up the controls of Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections. With managing a team of three ninjas, you’d think it might be overwhelming, but it wasn’t.

The controls are universal for all characters, with the difference being each Naruto character’s features and fighting style. Choji, for example, is quite large so he moves slower than most shinobi but packs a punch with his power. Another example is Kankuro, who hardly moves around the arena since he has his puppets doing the fighting for him.


Players shouldn’t expect a deep and mechanically intensive game in Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections. Oftentimes, you can get away by simply pressing a single button throughout a match, and while there are combos and blocks and grabs, the simplicity of it all can be a boon and a curse depending on how you look at it.

In fact, Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections adds a Simple control mode that’s also seen in other recent fighting games like Street Fighter 6, allowing players to focus more on embodying the chosen ninja over actual gameplay by having one button do all of the work.

Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections continues the tradition of presenting amazing visuals. If anything, the game boasts visuals that are quite faithful to the anime, making it feel like a playable anime episode that will really wow the fans. From the normal attacks to the ultimate techniques like Sasuke summoning Susanoo, the graphics are commendable and are a highlight of the game.


Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections pumps up the anime references even more thanks to the specific Linked Techniques, where if you put together in a team those characters with special relations, it will trigger cinematic attacks that are very fun to watch. Some will be more obvious, like the Uzumaki and Uchiha families, along with the original Teams formed in the Naruto anime.

The developers have done well in recreating many aspects of the anime and bringing it over to Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections that makes it THE Naruto video game to play for exciting and intense battles.


Missing Nin

It can’t be helped that Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections does have some big shoes to fill, being the latest entry after a long while. The previous title, Ninja Storm 4, was released in 2016 and was considered the height of the series with its Story Mode and even a Free Roam hub feature. Knowing these were in the previous entry, it was disappointing to see Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections fall short on that front.

You have your standard Online Battles, and your Free Battle Mode with the usual modes like VS, Tournament, and Survival. What stands out the most is its selection of over 130 ninjas, the biggest selection ever in the series, featuring the likes of the Kara and much more.

With this many ninjas to choose from in Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections, the developers have done some work for balancing and efforts at keeping things fresh, implementing some minor adjustments to existing characters like Mitsuki and Momoshi with new skills and techniques. Admittedly, not all of these characters have vastly unique playstyles, and some of them are just grown-up versions, which might make the 130-character roster feel a bit padded.


While Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections shines on that front, the audio is a mixed bag, specifically the voice performances for each of the characters. While I do prefer to play with Japanese voices, as might many, there is no doubt that Naruto’s Western voice cast has its own appeal. Sadly, players expecting strong performances will be let down.

Simply put, the English voiceovers in Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections felt bland and unenergetic compared to their Japanese counterparts. Even during more intense scenes where you expect some strong emotions, it felt awkward how some characters talk like they’re reading from a script. This persists in fights and even cutscenes, making the English-voiced experience dull and listless.

This is my story, Dad!

One of the more anticipated features of Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections is the addition of a brand new Special Story Mode which focuses on Boruto as the main character. Penned by Naruto creator Masashi Kishimoto, the new mode tells the story of a brand new video game called Ninja Heroes rapidly gaining popularity in the Ninja World, with Boruto being a huge fan of video games (pretty much like all of us).

It’s in this game that he meets a mysterious NPC guide named Nanashi, who is unusually expressive for being simply a character in the game. What follows is a series of mysterious events where the Ninja World is thrown into chaos and a brand new war is starting, with Seventh Hokage Naruto being all too eager to join the fight.  


Playing through this Special Story Mode, and expecting that it was a new story from Kishimoto-san, I felt that it was very predictable. If you’ve been exposed to many of the Shonen Jump series for a while, you know very well the power of friendship saves the day, and that rings true in Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections. One thing I did like, though, is how the theme of “Connections” is an integral piece, something we’ll let the players find out.

Another angle that felt like a letdown was that a major portion of the story involved reliving past events in the Naruto series. I’m not going to say how, but if you’re an avid fan, these scenarios will feel very familiar. With these anime tie-in games, it’s been a pet peeve of mine that every new entry simply retells the same story of an anime series, and Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections is another culprit caught guilty of the same offense.

I was certainly expecting something interesting with the Special Story Mode, and knowing that part of it involves recycled storylines in the Naruto series was definitely a huge disappointment. Stories don’t need to be groundbreaking but they should at least be interesting enough to feel enticing enough to follow. Having seen storylines that have used the same “power of friendship” concept, Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections’ so-called Special Story Mode didn’t feel that special to begin with.


Looking at it from another angle though, it’s this type of story that should appeal to fans of the series and possibly even to newcomers. Despite seeing all of this before, it was undeniable that the Special Story Mode had some emotional moments that felt good to see. I may be a more casual fan of the series at this point, but I still think newcomers and fans will like this overall story, even if it involves retreading familiar story beats.  

What We Liked:

  • Anime-like visuals are a sight to see
  • Easy to pick up combat controls
  • Faithful recreation of the world of Naruto

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Missing modes from previous games make the selection bare
  • Lackluster English voice acting
  • Special Story Mode was predictable and didn’t feel new

Verdict: Wait for it…


Naruto X Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections is another serviceable entry in the series, and while it doesn’t break or tread new ground, players can expect a fun but shallow outing with some of their favorite ninjas in the Naruto series.

Even with over 130 characters, the game is bogged down by a lack of modes, lackluster English voices, and a new story that felt predictable. While it did have some high points and some emotional moments, it doesn’t stand out too much, which might be a disappointment.

Overall, Ultimate Ninja Connections may be the latest entry in the series but after a long wait, fans may feel a bit disappointed at the offering. Still, if you’re looking for some good old Naruto action with friends, it is a title worth considering.

*Naruto X Boruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Connections was reviewed on a PS4 and PS5 with a review code provided by the publisher.

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