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Generally favorable reviews - based on 89 Critics What's this?

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8.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 892 Ratings

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  • Summary: Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, is a tale of a young boy named Oliver who embarks on a journey into a parallel world to bring his mother back from the dead. Along the way, Oliver makes friends and adopts many of the incredible creatures that live in the world, raising them to battleNi no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, is a tale of a young boy named Oliver who embarks on a journey into a parallel world to bring his mother back from the dead. Along the way, Oliver makes friends and adopts many of the incredible creatures that live in the world, raising them to battle other creatures with him as he takes on threatening enemies. Developed by LEVEL-5 with animation by the Studio Ghibli, Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch combines unique animated visuals, signature storytelling and a sweeping score into an epic role-playing adventure. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 81 out of 89
  2. Negative: 0 out of 89
  1. Jan 29, 2013
    100
    Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch is as much a triumph of curation as it is a technical showcase; Ghibli and Level 5 have cherry-picked the very best elements from their own past and combined them with the best that the genre has to offer.
  2. Jan 18, 2013
    94
    A magical, unforgettable voyage awaits us in Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch. This title brings back the essence of the JPRG genre, featuring great audiovisual beauty and a complex classic-flavored battle-system.
  3. Jan 17, 2013
    90
    With a heart-warming protagonist, beautifully illustrated world, and addicting gameplay, Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch is another masterpiece of which Level-5 and Studio Ghibli can be rightly proud.
  4. Mar 12, 2013
    90
    Level 5's highly anticipated collaboration with Studio Ghibli is just as great as it looks. And it looks great. The art style is exactly what you'd expect from Studio Ghibli, and the same goes for the music. Battles are fought with familiars, that you collect and train throughout the game. It's not a revolution, but it does almost everything right.
  5. Apr 1, 2013
    85
    Despite the delayed journey to the West, Ni No Kuni is definitely a title you should at least give a chance. There is a demo up on PSN that you can go ahead and download, and once you get used to the combat system and mechanics of the game, you’ll be treated to an adventure like no other.
  6. Feb 10, 2013
    80
    Not quite a masterpiece - but still pretty special. Ni no Kuni has the depth and artistic credibility to justify the partnership with Studio Ghibli. [March 2013, p.69]
  7. Mar 20, 2013
    50
    In a certain sense, Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch seems to be exactly as advertised. The quality of the artwork is unimpeachable, just as one might expect from the studio that created it. Unfortunately, the beauty of Ghibli has been painted onto the unimaginative and poorly-executed design of Level-5. As a result, Ni No Kuni turns out as blandly as its name suggests.

See all 89 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 16 out of 221
  1. Jan 22, 2013
    10
    I picked this up at midnight and I was amazed by nearly every aspect of the game so far. The story is beautiful and heartbreaking so far. I amI picked this up at midnight and I was amazed by nearly every aspect of the game so far. The story is beautiful and heartbreaking so far. I am really enjoying something that square enix forgot about and that is EXPLORATION!!!!!!!!! New gen RPGS are just hallways or sandbox games. This really brings back memories of psone style RPGS when you can explore a world map. I have 100s of games across psone, ps2, ps3, psp, dreamcast, saturn and wii. And even though I've only played Ni No Kuni for a few hours. It is by far the best jrpg NO best of any rpg this gen for sure. Doesn't matter how it ends I've had more fun with the first few hours of this game then 100s of hours spent on others. This game needs to be a best seller so game designers will stop making every game with guns. Don't get me wrong I love killzone but FPS is getting OLD!!!! I hope this brings new life into the game industry that has been costing on crap for too long. Expand
  2. Jan 24, 2013
    10
    I just picked this game up today, and just started playing (not spoiling anything, but just near the end of the walk through), and I wouldI just picked this game up today, and just started playing (not spoiling anything, but just near the end of the walk through), and I would have to say, this game is beautiful. Everything about it, the looks, the feel, the design, even the menus! Honestly I got this game for 2 reasons, 1) I am huge Miyazaki fan, I have seen just about all his movies. 2) I knew that the art would be unbelievable, and boy was I right. With in the few hours I've played it feels like I'm playing Howls moving castle! I've spent at least 10 minutes running in circles just looking at his cape ^_^. Though I was satisfied with those 2 factors, the game has already gone beyond my expectations! Joe Hisaishi blew me away with just the music on the title screen. The story line makes me feel warm, taking elements from his other films just add to my inner child. When I first entered a battle I was assuming it would just be one more turn based Really, which I really don't like. Then when I found out that it wasn't, and the created a whole new system, I was impressed. The only thing that I am not fond of is the in battle controls. because it is set where you can run, it is a bit difficult to switch between actions. it would be nice if that was set to R1 and R2. besides this minor setback, this game in my eyes is almost flawless. I would recommend this to anyone who is an RPG or Ghibli fan ^_^. Expand
  3. Jan 23, 2013
    10
    Slow start but picks up nicely. The visuals are so beautiful. I entered a zone and the music had my hair stand up and a shiver ran up mySlow start but picks up nicely. The visuals are so beautiful. I entered a zone and the music had my hair stand up and a shiver ran up my spine. The voice acting could be more professional but overall it is still pretty good. The dialog had me laughing - video games rarely make me laugh. Expand
  4. Jun 22, 2014
    9
    Despite the controversy with Namco and the wizards edition scandal, and having to wait two years for a proper English port of the game, Ni NoDespite the controversy with Namco and the wizards edition scandal, and having to wait two years for a proper English port of the game, Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch arrives! The game came out early in 2013, finally got the time to actually sit down and put in 50 hours of time to beat the game, which is standard at this point for JRPGs. Ni No Kuni has a mixture of emotions from gamers. Seems to vary between people loving the game naming it one of the best JRPGs they have ever played, or others just thinking it is an okay game. Haven’t come across anyone who passionately despises the game yet though.

    Ni No Kuni is based on a story where a young lad name Oliver comes across a pretty serious tragedy that changes his life. Oliver then goes to another world in which he hopes to reverse the tragedy that has happened in his world there, while also helping this other world with the perils it is going through. Pretty standard for JRPGs if you ask me, boy has to save the world from big bad evil and spoiler alert, he needs to have some big bad weapon to do it. However, there isn’t anything wrong with staying with the standards set of blueprints of typical JRPGs, and in fact Ni No Kuni’s story is one of thee best if not thee best part of the game. The story is a story we can all relate to, and may even give some nostalgic memories of childhood with dare I use the word “cute”. Despite Ni No Kuni being cute, it is no kids game. In fact, the story is actually rather dark and sinister. In addition, the story has some interesting twists, some that I didn’t really fully suspect until right before the end. The side stories of the various side characters “Drippy, Swaine, and Esther” are also very well written, and there are even more side stories than that! The voice acting dialog and writing of the game are top-notch, and at points funny with characters like Drippy and Swaine.

    So the story is good, it should be something you expect from a solid RPG honestly. How about the gameplay? It is very similar, if not an extensive rip off of Pokemon. You catch familiars “Pokemon” train them and evolve them with large amounts of sweets and then fight with them. It is quite surprising that all my familiars did not end up with type two diabetes by the end of the game, because holy **** eating 10 sundaes, chocolate bars, ice creams, pies, or cakes will never end well. Not to mention, the whole concept of leveling your characters with these damn sweets is awfully tedious and time-consuming to give them the treats one by one. Course, you could just give them the sweets that have more fullness, but I have other things to buy then just making these sweets to evolve them. It got to a point where I just stopped evolving them because the whole task just got so cumbersome and took forever. Despite barely evolving them, the game was very easy. I only had some troubles with about one to three of the regular bosses, and then had quite some trouble with the very last boss. Other than that, I played the entire game on normal and had no problems doing much of anything. About half way through the game, you get a spell called travel that makes matters only worst for the games difficulty. Essentially, travel is the fast travel of Ni No Kuni. Once I got travel, the game went so much faster, which was something it didn’t need because it was pretty damn easy already. Others have claimed they never had enough MP or always ran out, and for some reason caffeine must be scarce because Coffee costs a fortune at 1,000G or so eventually. I never really used the spells, and still had no problem. The one I did was Oliver’s healing touch, and that only took 3 MP per cast. There is a whole thought out system of weaknesses and strategy and all set for you, but didn’t use any of it as I didn’t need to. Many people I have seen complain about the battle system and the battle UI. I had no problem with it, and quite frankly liked the battle UI.

    The second complaint I had with the game was the whole concept of errands. All the errands and such are repetitive, to the point where they use the same characters. Most of them involve finding someone with a broken heart and then mending their heart. I don’t really want to explain the whole concept of the hearts, but essentially it is a “take this from this person to this person” type of situation. At first, they had some variety in Ding Dong Dell with errands, and then post-completion they had the variety they needed during the game all along! Errands however, are still worth doing despite being awfully linear and boring, as they remove the grind from the game “for the most part, I still did some grinding at the end”, give you the majority of your funds, and supply you with neat bonus attributes by turning in your merit cards you earn from doing errands for a reward of attributes that may boost the xp gained per battle to boost the loot of battles and much more.
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  5. Feb 6, 2013
    9
    FIRST IMPRESSIONS I shall return to review this upon completion. Well I'm 9 hours in have only two familiars and am thoroughly enjoying thisFIRST IMPRESSIONS I shall return to review this upon completion. Well I'm 9 hours in have only two familiars and am thoroughly enjoying this impressive JRPG. I'm still currently having my hand held through gameplay with new spells, responsibilities and tools being unlocked as I go which really contributes to the depth on offer here. Ni No Kuni IS an important JRPG because it demonstrates to the Japanese what western players love about the genre and this is being shown in sales and acclaim (though some western critics still stubbornly dismiss the gameplay and combat as dull). Personally I have always loved turn-based combat, and whilst the FF series lost this when square soft merged to become square-enix through awful ATB, Level-5 bring it back via Pokemon and form something that's fast, fluid and not a chore. Battles come and go so quickly that there's no tsk when an enemy forces you to engage. What's even better is the fact that if you grind for a while enemy encounters will generally lessen because the enemies no longer attack and instead will attempt to flee from a confrontation. This is a much welcomed move which really refines the combat and any qualms modern gamers may have with it. In terms of story, Ghibli has not been watered down that much, providing a fantastic coming-of-age tale that comes off as touching and mature. The cutesy animation may put players off, but for those who have always enjoyed Ghibli's output (myself included) there is really no excuse not to pick this up. The characters of Oliver and Mr Drippy are fresh, vivid and more importantly relatable, and the dialogue exchanges are humorous as well as informative if you're getting overwhelmed with the gameplay information. You're even provided with a pokedex type journal which allows you to view all the creatures you'll come across in the game, which includes video animations and information which can aid you in defeating them. Couple this with side quests aplenty, a beautiful world map to explore, towns with talkative inhabitants and some the gorgeous animated cutscenes and you have the recipe for the finest JRPG since Disgaea (just my opinion). Expand
  6. Feb 6, 2013
    8
    Anyone who would give this a 10 is ignoring some serious flaws. The game has great audio and visuals, the story is okay, and it's a lot ofAnyone who would give this a 10 is ignoring some serious flaws. The game has great audio and visuals, the story is okay, and it's a lot of fun, but some of the gameplay elements are seriously lacking in fun, and some of the stages of the game suffer from lack of consideration. Side quests in the game are more of an optional chore than anything else and never add anything meaningful to the game. The primary story quests are mostly fine, though some don't make a whole lot of sense; however, many are mundane tasks that would be more enjoyable to watch then to actually do yourself.

    Imagine a game where you raid a castle full of enemies, but every room is separated by a locked door, and to open the door you have to go back to one of the rooms you previously cleared to grab the key. You don't have to search for it, you're told exactly where it is, but you have to manually walk over there, pick it up, and bring it back. Now imagine that every time to go between rooms you've already cleared, you have to open the door separating them, slowly walk through it, and then close it behind you even though you know you'll be coming back this way in a few minutes. This is how the story quests in Ni No Kuni feel. I understand for the sake of the plot the main character has to do some less than interesting things, but why did the game designers think it was a good idea to make the players experience these things, and even hold the player's hand while they do them. The game also feels like you never quite completed the tutorial part of the game. Part of it is that they continue to slowly introduce you to new features as the game progresses, but sometimes they slowly walk you through a process you've already done 20 times and it makes absolutely no sense.

    The biggest flaw with the game is the combat system. It's very similar to Final Fantasy 12's combat system where you control 1 of 3 party members at a time and can switch control to perform important tasks. The big difference is that FFXII had a deep system of customizable AI called gambits that let the players control how the other members acted without your assistance, and even that system left mature players wanting more control. The Ni No Kuni system gives you a handful and a half of vague commands such as "keep us healthy" and "go all out" which all seem to disappoint in some way other than "do whatever you want" and "do nothing" which work as you'd expect, unless you were expecting the AI to be smart that is. Since most of the bosses in the game revolve entirely around protecting yourself from charged up attacks, a big part of combat is hitting the defend or evade button to protect yourself at the right time. Now when you only have 1 character this is fine: all you do is cancel your attack, scroll through the clumsy console AI to defend or evade, and press X(cross) at the right time. It's a shame the developers didn't choose to use any of the many unused buttons to defend, but this could be due to some familiars not having either defend or evade or the ability to make all your characters defend with a different button. The strange thing is, they don't give you the ability to make all your characters defend until after you have all 3, so there's this awkward time where you have 2 characters and a boss is about to go nuts on you, but all you can do is protect one of you people. It's actually easier to kill some of the bosses by letting your partner die and then proceeding to outplay the boss according to his mechanics with the character you control.

    Despite the incredibly flawed combat system, the game is really fun. Even on normal difficulty and with the AI problems, none of the boss fights are more unacceptably challenging. Even if you do find something overly difficult, you can just grind a few levels or buy some more items to make up the difference. It would be nice if the game had more readily available information on the different choices of familiars and the tricks available to their various forms as well as stat values, but since you can beat the game with any randomly thrown together crew, it's hardly an issue. The game is certainly more appropriate for a younger, more casual demographic of gamer than myself, but there's plenty there for more mature gamers and powergamers to enjoy as well.

    +Amazing graphics
    +Good (Japanese) voiceovers. Have not listened to English.
    +Simple and trite but well executed story
    +Plenty of content
    +Noob friendly and kid friendly
    +Visually impressive, engaging, and fun boss battles
    -Awful AI foundation for core combat system
    -Too childish for some, and too easy outside of the artificial difficulty that comes from the poor AI
    -Lack of depth to combat and training system.
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  7. Feb 18, 2013
    0
    An amazing game ruined by a horrific battle system.
    First off when you battle there are 2 computer controlled companions which help you out.
    An amazing game ruined by a horrific battle system.
    First off when you battle there are 2 computer controlled companions which help you out. Now, you can control them individually by freely switching back and forth between them and your main character or just let them do their own thing. But seeing as the game isn't turn based and the A.I is terrible I have a few BIG issues which kill the game for me (I have now stopped playing after 15 hours). Fighting normal battles isn't really an issue as just spamming the attack button seems to work pretty well. There isn't the tactical aspect i was hoping for like with turn based battles.
    The final straw came was whilst fighting a certain boss. And the things which really drive me crazy is when a Boss does a special move you HAVE to defend or evade otherwise you take massive damage, its just how the game is, the tutorial teaches you all about defending and it is vital to all boss battles. So image my joy when I defend the bosses special attacks to find that the other 2 computer controlled players NEVER defend or evade. So i'm constantly having to keep healing them which soon depletes your magic. An even bigger problem is when Ester, the female AI, runs out of MP instead of using a captured Familiar (aka Pokemon) to fight, she just runs up to the boss and starts attacking with her harp doing a really useful 1 damage per attack, all the while getting smashed by the boss.
    Its a real big shame. The graphics, sound, and different things to do are brilliant, i was really enjoying this game. There's so much to do, tons of side quests, you can make you own items, weapons, armour etc. Apparently there's a casino and a battle arena and all sorts of other stuff to do and i was really looking forward to it. If this game had turn-based battles like Final Fantasy 7, it may have possibly become my favourite RPG to date. I just hope they fire whoever it was who decided to have computer controlled team mates, and make a sequel with turn-based battles because this real time idea was a massive FAIL. I'm certain alot of these reviews where written after just a few hours of gameplay, and if I had written a review after just a few hours I would have also given a 9 or 10, the battle system at first is fine because you don't have any stupid A.I team mates to ruin your day. But once you have the A.I on your team that all changes. I suggest you have a read through of the critic reviews, but don't read the paid for 90-100 scores. Read up on the fighting in the "mixed" reviews for more info on the poor battle system. Good luck, if you can see past the shocking battle system then you're in for a treat! Why, oh why, isn't there a proper Pokemon game in this style on a console! Oh and one more thing, when your captured familiars (aka Pokemon) take damage your character takes damage, that's right they share the same HP and MP which also sucks big time!
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See all 221 User Reviews

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