For those of you that don’t know, Bleach Brave Souls is now officially ready to download and install. If you signed up with Prelaunch.me then you should have received an email notifying you that the game is now available, but if not you can head over to the Google Play store or the iTunes app store to download Bleach Brave Souls now.
Bleach Brave Souls is developed by KLab Global, it is a hack and slash adventure RPG game that officially launched for the USA and global regions outside of Japan on January 13th. When you start the game you will have to wait for it to do a HUGE update, for me this took a really long time because it took forever to download, so just let it sit around for a long time and go do something else while it updates (I went to go cook dinner, it was finished by the time I was done). Get used to this, because the game will only download and install content you access, so when you start a specific mission it may need to download that content first before you play (This goes for all players on your team if you play online).
Players can choose to play solo or also play online with other players to make friends and team up in cooperative battles. When you start the game, Rukia will serve as your guide to help you through the tutorial phase and will teach you how to play and how to fight.
All of the battles take place in real time combat, giving you four attack buttons (those are unlocked as you progress through the game) on the right, and a movement pad on the left side of the screen. If you do a quick swiping motion in any direction, you will dodge out of the way of attacks. You can even perform the swipe dodge while in the middle of attacking, giving you a lot of freedom to maneuver around the battle field while fighting enemies.
The combat is actually really well done and I enjoy the battles a lot. When you or an enemy uses a special attack, the game will switch over and show special cut scenes and images and will make the transition seamlessly between the cut scene and the battle. Targeting and fighting is easy, because as long as you hold down the attack button the character will automatically attempt to target the nearest enemy unless you maneuver to target another enemy instead. Sometimes the buttons are a bit too small which can make it difficult to perform your special moves, and swipe dodging takes some getting used to in order to perform it at will, but overall the battles function and play really smooth from what I have played.
When you choose the co-op option you can choose to randomly join other players, create your own room, or join a specific room. There are also preset phrases that you can select to quickly chat with your team (such as asking to be healed) without having to type out long sentences during battle. You can also do PVP where you fight against other players. The PVP matchmaking works similar to the co-op mode, except instead of working together you are going head to head against a rival team.
On the main screen, you can also go to the summon shop to earn more partners by using Spirit orbs, which is a special type of currency used for various things in the game ranging from buying characters to leveling up. When you summon a new character it will randomly roll which character you will unlock, so if you are looking for a specific character you will most likely have to spend a lot of Spirit orbs to unlock them.
Login bonuses also rewards you with Spirit orbs if you consecutively log in everyday for the week, and you can also gain them by getting a perfect score from a mission and earn them as a reward. However, beginners will be rewarded with a large sum of spirit Orbs after completing the short tutorial, so you will have plenty when you start off as long as you use them wisely (Players that signed up with Prelaunch will also get an additional bonus). There is a gift button at the top right corner of the screen on the main menu for you to collect the free items. This now brings us to the cash shop.
In Bleach Brave Souls you need summon tickets, spirit orbs, and soul tickets to unlock more content in this game. In order to get a lot of these items the easiest way is to buy them from the cash shop, the hard way is by completing story missions and special events. All players start with Ichigo, and one other character will be given to you for free when you start the game and you can use those two characters to form a team. Team’s can have up to three people in the team, and you can also form up to three additional teams slots to quickly switch between different characters before starting a mission. Even if you switch Ichigo out of the team, you can still play through the entire story mission with characters and a team of your choice.
After clearing a mission, you will be given money and experience points that will help level you up. You can then use those coins to upgrade your characters to make them stronger, and even buy accessories and new abilities from the Soul Tree (like a skill tree) to make your favorite characters more powerful. At any time, if you run out of Spirit orbs or any of the other currency items, you can of course buy them from the cash shop.
The main story mode for Bleach Brave Souls is fun to play through and is filled with dialogue and small scenes from the anime and Manga, but it is also a bit rushed and doesn’t do justice to the characters or make clear sense of what is going on if you never watched the anime. You pretty much get a small bit of talking with stagnate pictures so that you know who is saying what, and then you move you on to the next battle. In this regard, the story doesn’t make a lot of sense and is mostly there as an excuse to fight more enemies.
Outside of story mode, there are also Daily missions known as “Orders” that you can complete to unlock more special items, as well as weekly tasks and special events. These Orders are like Achievements that you have to unlock and complete to gain more money, items, or Spirit orbs by completing the special requirements listed for that Order- such as kill one hundred enemies within one week.
If you happen to get kicked out of the game or the app crashes, it has a really neat Mission resume feature so you can pick back up where you last left off, and I really do mean where you last left off. I wish other games had this when getting disconnected because it allowed me to finish the boss fight without having to start the entire mission over from the beginning. I have a lower end Android phone and occasionally it will crash if it runs out of memory, so adding this feature was quite considerate of the developers.
On a related side note, the game also runs perfectly on my phone. I bought a cheap Alcatel Touch Android phone for $1 during Black Friday, and this game runs flawlessly on it, meaning that Bleach Brave Souls has almost perfect optimization for lower end Android devices. I’m sure that Players that are using older devices will appreciate that the game will mostly run smoothly without too many hiccups.
This was shocking because the visual graphics with this game are actually really nice to be a mobile title, and I had really smooth framerate the entire time while playing (minus the occasional internet lag). While on the main menu you can also join the public chat room to socialize and talk with other players in game to make a few new friends, or maybe even ask for a bit of help. When I entered the chat it was quite lively and there were several players engaged in conversation.
Overall, for a free to play hack and slash mobile title I actually really enjoy this, and I’m not even a fan of Bleach. I’m sure that players that have watched the anime and read the manga will really enjoy playing this game. I highly recommend you check it out and play through it a bit to see if you like it, because it won’t cost you anything but your time.
For more information you can check out Bleach Brave Souls at the Google play store as well as the iTunes store. For additional information and details, you can also visit the Bleach Brave Souls Official website.