The One Piece manga celebrated its 25th-anniversary last year, marking an important milestone as the series sails ever closer to its finale. With such a long-running franchise, it’s no surprise that there have been a number of video game adaptations over the years. From retellings of the manga’s arcs to completely original stories, the games have gone in a number of different directions. One Piece Odyssey is the latest attempt to adapt the One Piece franchise, going for a more subdued turn-based affair than something along the lines of Pirate Warriors or World Seeker. Unfortunately, while the premise certainly had potential, Odyssey just ends up being a mediocre JRPG and not much more.
One Piece Odyssey takes place during Luffy and the crew’s adventures in the New World. After discovering a mysterious island while sailing, a freak storm causes them to be shipwrecked. As if being lost in uncharted territory wasn’t enough, a mysterious girl also causes most of the crew to lose their abilities. It turns out that this can be reversed by entering Memoria, a strange place that allows them to relive memories of their past adventures.
It’s an OK setup, giving you a quick intro to this Odyssey-original area and the couple of new characters it introduces. You have Adio, someone who also ended up stuck on the island, and Lim, the one who causes the Straw Hat Pirates to lose their powers in the first place. However, due to the story splitting time between sections on the island and time reliving past events in Memoria, you don’t actually get to see Adio that much. Even Lim, who accompanies the crew into Memoria, is absent during most events, merely making remarks in the background every now and then.
This lack of focus is really where One Piece Odyssey’s narrative falls apart. You’ll visit four different arcs from the manga, with the objective being to defeat the main villains and restore your abilities. But for most of the time you spend in Memoria (especially during the first part, Alabasta), you’re just stuck doing boring fetch quests and other filler. Areas are small and lack interesting landmarks, with only the occasional set piece breaking things up.
Each arc represented is done very little justice, skipping over huge chunks of the original story without adding anything meaningful in its place. Going back to Alabasta should have been a fun trip down memory lane, but instead, it's a boring slog. Later Memoria sections are much shorter, but still fail to capture the charm of the source material — one section is barely even an hour long and lacks any narrative impact.
In the end, One Piece Odyssey’s story is the worst of both worlds. The original story sections make up a small part of the game and feature a number of predictable twists, and the Memoria sections are a poor retelling of classic One Piece arcs. It all leads to a rushed finale, as Odyssey attempts to wrap up the underbaked story of its two original characters. While it doesn’t do the worst job, I couldn’t help but feel like not much actually happened during my time with Lim or Adio.
Now, this wouldn’t be too bad if the main RPG gameplay was engaging, but it isn’t. Whether on the island or in Memoria, you spend a good chunk of your time going through mostly linear areas, occasionally exploring to get extra accessories or materials. While you’re sometimes rewarded for exploration, most of the time you’re better off making a beeline for the next story objective. This isn’t helped by the fact that most side quests or other distractions are locked until you’ve already completed a specific Memoria chapter, though maybe that’s for the best (more on this in a second).
Some areas at least capture the spirit of locations found in One Piece, though many are incredibly generic — there’s even a sewer section, the least interesting place you could add to an RPG. Most of the crew also have their own unique abilities that can be used outside of battle, though three of these just amount to finding hidden items. You’ll spend most of your time playing as Luffy anyway since he’s needed for most platforming and can grab items at a distance.
Battles also suffer from being generally boring, though the battle system does have some potential. Outside of a few status effects, damage is done based on a rock-paper-scissors style system, with characters and enemies sorted into power, speed, and technique types. Combat is also split into multiple small areas, with different attacks able to hit enemies in your area, or areas further away.
This area mechanic attempts to add some extra strategy to what is mostly a standard turn-based battle system, but there are a few reasons why this doesn’t really work. For starters, the main strategy is still just to use your most efficient moves. Nearly every move the crew has access to is some variation of damaging a specific enemy or area, with the occasional status effect thrown in. There’s no real variety, which is made even worse during late game when more characters have moves that hit all enemies regardless of which area they’re in.
Compounding the issues with battles is the simple fact that they’re just far too easy. Outside of a couple of boss battles that try to “balance” this by making them take zero damage at random, you can make it through fights with little thought to types or move choices. The aforementioned late game moves make this even worse, with Luffy able to one-shot groups of enemies with ease.
One Piece Odyssey is not the worst JRPG I’ve ever played, but it could be one of the most disappointing. It fails to tell an interesting story, drops the ball when it comes to balance, and attempts to rely on nostalgia rather than quality. One Piece fans might still get something out of it, but only if you’ve absolutely exhausted every other piece of modern media that’s available for the franchise.
TechRaptor reviewed One Piece Odyssey on PC using a copy provided by the publisher. It is also available on, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X|S
- Decent visuals
- Poor story
- Padding during Memoria sections
- Boring battles