Balls to the wall crazy!

Title: Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions
Platform: Nintendo Switch, PS4, and PC (reviewed)
Developer: Tamsoft
Publisher: Bandai Namco
Release date: Out now.
Tl;dr: A wild ride in the world of football and anime.
Price: $50/£40
Family Focus?: Click here for more information

I am a general fan of anime but usually battle anime like Dragon Ball, Bleach and Yu Yu Hakusho, however, recently I got into sports anime. I don’t know what happened, I just suddenly started watching them like Haikyuu and Kuroko’s Basketball. Then, I saw Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions and I thought I would give it a look and I am glad I did because this game is truly insane as it is probably the most anime game, I’ve ever played!

The main story follows the titular character, Tsubasa as a middle schooler in a football team at Nankatsu Middle School. The story follows the Middle School Arc which is the second story arc in the manga/anime. You also have the New Hero story mode which follows your own created character as you tackle Japans greatest players. Tsubasa’s story acts much like a tutorial for the game teaches you the basics of the game such as tackling and sprinting.

Throughout Tsubasa’s story, you have the chance of performing special scenes, if you manage to recreate actions from the anime or if you finish the game with the score that is achieved by the players in the anime which is a nice touch for fans of the series. A similar thing was done in Dragon Ball FighterZ and the Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm series. You also obtain packs of cards that help level up your create-a-character and thankfully these aren’t microtransactions as they only obtainable through the game’s in-game challenge log.

There is some multiplayer you can dive into both offline and online. The offline component allows up to four players to jump and have a game with each other which is pretty cool as offline multiplayer has unfortunately become a thing of the past and I’m glad more and more developers are looking to bring it back. The online side of multiplayer can pit you against people in regular matches or you can climb the rankings in ranked matches.

What I love most in Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is how wildly over-the-top the game is, some of the shots you can take are just borderline bonkers like holy shit insane! One kick I did literally made the football look like it was reentering the atmosphere and the keeper tried to stop it but was catapulted back into the net. Plus, I’m pretty sure some of the tackles in the game could be considered as an offence in the football world, red cards would litter the floor for how many the referee would flash at the players.

Graphically, Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is beautifully cel-shaded which makes the game look like the anime brought to life which is weird to say as anime is the manga brought to life… Anyway, some of the attacks or should I say special kicks or shooting are so well animated with flashy colours. The soundtrack is some head-bopping, foot-tapping and full inspiration that gets you hyped for the matches that lie ahead of you as well as the matches you are currently playing through. Thankfully, there is a gallery which allows looking back over previous cutscenes, character bios and a music player.

Overall, Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is a great game and it’s even perfect for those who don’t usually enjoy sports much like myself as it isn’t like your ordinary football game with its insane over-the-top actions. Honestly, I recommend everyone to give it a go as it is great fun. However, the game does experience a few crashes here and there, in fact, I struggled to get the game to run initially as the game usually crashed during the first cutscene but thankfully that has been addressed.

The Good

  • Over-the-top actions that your characters can perform including atmosphere bending shots!
  • Stunning cel-shaded graphics that truly compliment the series.
  • Not bogged down by microtransactions!

The Bad

  • Load times can be somewhat tedious.
  • A handful of game crashes.

Family Focus

Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is rated PEGI 7 and E10+ for Everyone 10+ by the ESRB.

Contains anime violence that would most likely net you a red card in a real game.

This review is based on a retail code of the game supplied by PR for the purpose of review.