Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch Review


Developer: Studio Ghibli & Level-5
Publisher: Bandai Namco Entertainment & Level- 5
Original game released on DS: Ni No Kuni: Dominion of the Dark Djinn
PS3 Review

I know this is a fairly out of date game but with the release of Ni No Kuni 2 (Revenant Kingdom) not far off I wanted to write up a review about the first game. A good few years back, Ni No Kuni Wrath of the White Witch became part of my PS3 collection, I initially saw the trailer and knew I had to have the game within the first few seconds of watching it, my reason for this was because it was clear that Studio Ghibli played a big role in this RPG, they actually produced the animated sequences in the game. This is a game I feel every Studio Ghibli fan should give a go, you may need to borrow a PS3 but you can get the game for as little as £4.99 from some places. The game is about a young boy named Oliver from a town named Motorville, the game starts off very dramatically and heartbroken, Oliver is trying out a new car that was designed by his friend Phillip, whilst trying it over Oliver goes into a lake and almost drowns. Oliver's mum rushes to save him but dies suddenly from heart problems. In a flash just like that Oliver's world is turned upside down, he loses the most important person in his life which pulled at my heartstrings so badly.


We see Oliver's doll that his mother gave to him come to life with Oliver's magical tears and find out the doll was more than just a toy it was, in fact, a little fairy named Drippy, I loved this little fella he is the most adorable and lovely thing about the game for me, I was so jealous when I found out that people who got the collectors version of the game had a Drippy teddy included! After Drippy comes to life he explains to Oliver that he is from another world, basically another dimension where there is an exact same copy of people from Oliver's world, Drippy explains they are called soul mates and that Oliver's late mother Allie looks just like like a great sage named Alicia. Unfortunately, Alicia has been captured by Shader, an evil Wizard who has taken over the world Drippy comes from. Oliver puts two and two together and worked out that his mother's soul mate is Alicia and decides to go with Drippy in order to save Alicia, he believes if he saves his mother's soul mate then there is a chance of saving his mother.



The evil Wizard Shador has the power to make people heartbroken and whilst Oliver is in the other world he finds out he has magical powers to restore the pieces of heart these heartbroken people have lost. At times I would have breaks from this game and would find it hard to remember what I was meant to be doing or where I was going but after a little while of exploring I would find myself immersed in the game all over again, I'm planning on going back to it at some point and playing it back through as Ni No Kuni 2 will be out within a few months, from what I hear it will be a lot more different from the first. If you like games that involve a lot of battling then I'm sure you will enjoy this game. You will find yourself spending a lot of time battling against monsters, at times I would find this annoying but I think it helps me with being able to battle harder enemies within the game, other times you will travel all over to find heartbroken people who Oliver will have to help.


When Oliver comes across an enemy he will enter a battle system, this is a lot like Pokemon except all battles take place on an open battlefield allowing Oliver to be moved around. Whilst in battle mode you will have something called a familiar to fight with a familiar are creatures who fight alongside Oliver in battle, they level up and evolve just like Pokemon and Digimon. You can use these familiars to fight in your place when a creature battle takes place and they can be controlled with commands from whoever owns them, there are around 444 different familiars which include what they can evolve into. Once you have defeated an enemy in the game you receive experience points, money or items which will all come in handy to help you as a played evolve/level up. 



Magic is a huge part of this game and Oliver relies on it a lot in the otherworld, throughout his journey he starts to get more powerful and learn more spells which I enjoyed, it was nice learning more about Oliver and how he went from a frail heart broke little boy to a young man fighting against the odds in the hopes of saving his mother, although it can feel very demanding the game as a whole is well worth a play through. This is coming from someone who spent hours trying to work out how not to die and what buttons work best, that sounds pretty dramatic but back in 2011, I wasn't that much of a big gamer. I played games but nothing like Ni No Kuni before, the graphics continuously drew me back into the game, it was vibrant and gave me a sense of happiness even if most people in the game were heartbroken and sad.

This is a game I could come back to over and over again and still appreciate the artwork, it wouldn't matter to me how ages it would look because I'm still in love with the older Studio Ghibli movie My Neighbor Totoro which was brought out back in 1988 making it 30 years old this year! I give this game 4 stars.



- Elle Robson

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