Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 is comfortably one of the best anime based titles on the PlayStation 4, and now almost exactly a year after its original release, it's getting a pretty meaty expansion in the form of Naruto Storm 4: Road to Boruto. As the title suggests, this add-on features the exploits of Boruto, Naruto's skilled but somewhat wayward son. It's based upon the rather divisive post-Shippuden storylines, but even if you're not overly keen on the latest manga chapters and movies, there's still fun to be had here thanks to a set of memorable battles and a sprinkling of new playable characters.
Much like the base game's adventure mode, Road to Boruto sees you dash around the Hidden Leaf Village in between important fights that progress the plot. There's a smattering of small side quests to undertake and a few secrets to sniff out, but other than the battles themselves, it's all very familiar - perhaps overly so. Don't get us wrong - it's still a pleasant gameplay structure, but if you've sunk a decent amount of time into the aforementioned adventure mode, then this new chapter may seem like a bit of a grind at points.
Fortunately, the big story brawls just about make up for the potential tedium. As we've come to expect of developer CyberConnect 2, the cinematic battles are incredibly impressive in motion, and when it's at its best, Storm 4's combat system still feels effortlessly cool. The animation quality still seems to be on another level when compared to other licensed games, and the flashy special attacks remain as eye-popping as ever.
What's more, fans will appreciate the effort that's gone into making the new characters feel every bit as authentic as the existing cast. Boruto and the gang slot straight into the already gigantic roster, offering yet more options when it comes to building your dream team of ninja. That said, it is a shame that some prominent characters didn't make the cut - you'll go up against several fresh faces during the story that aren't actually playable, which does sour things a touch.
It's also worth mentioning that in order to play as the handful of characters who can actually be used in other modes, you'll need to progress through Road to Boruto, gradually unlocking them as you go. It's certainly not a deal breaker, but players who are eager to simply jump straight into the action with their new fighters may find the whole thing a little arduous.
Expansions are rare when it comes to fighting games, but Road to Boruto manages to add a reasonable chunk of content to a brawler that's already stuffed with things to do. Most of what's on offer is nothing new, but if you've been looking for an excuse to leap back into CyberConnect 2's super polished title, then this additional adventure is as good a reason as any.