Jump Superstars

posted in Games on Apr 23, 2007

I’ve brought up some incredibly nerdy and weird stuff on this website before, and while this doesn’t necessary take the cake, it’s fairly high up there. Jump Superstars is a fighting game for the DS based on Shonen Jump manga. For the uninformed, manga is the word for crazy Japanese comics. Superstars basically takes a ton of the characters from these comics, throws them together, and creates an incredibly fun and rewarding game.

Gameplay takes place on the top screen with basic fighting controls. A is jump, B is weak attack, Y is a strong attack, and X is a special move. No surprises here. The biggest change to the fighting formula comes with the bottom screen, where you have a “deck” of “cards” that allow you to change characters and bring up support characters. I put “deck” and “cards” in quotations because they aren’t really decks or cards, but there’s no better description for them. If this was a card battling game a la Yu-Gi-Oh!, I probably wouldn’t play it because of my inherent distaste for card battling games. But I digress. As you play through the game, you unlock new cards that you use in combination with each other to make new characters to play with. There are also helper cards that give you in game stat boosts, and support cards that allow characters to instantly come on the screen and do a special attack.

The way you use these cards is by touching them on the bottom screen while you fight. The bottom screen consists of a 5 x 4 grid for you to fill in your cards. Helper cards take up one space, Support cards take up two to three spaces, and Fighter cards take up four to six spaces. You can place any combination of these types of cards so long as you have space, so fully customized decks are the norm, and it makes the game feel very fresh.

The only thing to complain about with this game is that it will never come to America through the normal channels, and by that I mean I have an import copy. It’s totally in Japanese, and I have to look up the translations online. That’s kind of a pain, but the game is so fun it doesn’t really matter. I’m not the biggest fan of fighting games, but this one is really great. There’s a sequel that has come out in Japan that allows for online play, and, being the nerd that I am, I must own it. If you are as nerdy as I, then you must own it too.