The war arcs in Naruto are arguably the most important arcs of the story, as they conclude everything that has been built up before them. Because of the many different events and aspects of the war, there is some room to make changes and create an alternative Naruto war arc.
One last important note, we write this article as a fan of Naruto and not to criticize Kishimoto and his writing.
1. No white zetsu
The army of one hundred thousand white Zetsu was one of the biggest weapons Obito possessed during the Naruto war arc, making him outnumber the Allied Shinobi Forces by a large amount. It makes perfect sense for him to use this move and pressure the allied shinobi forces this way, but story-wise it created some generic fight scenes and hollow story moments.
Use real people instead
There are many smaller countries that have suffered from the wars between the five great nations and their Hidden Villages. Amegakure is a perfect example of a village that has suffered greatly by being used as a battleground during the war.
We can assume that there are more villages and smaller countries that hold a grudge against the five great nations, and would be more than willing to align themselves with the mighty ‘Madara’.
Missing-nin could also be willing to fight back against the village they had abandoned. They can even have some skilled shinobi with unique jutsu, take Kimimaro and Haku as an example.
Show the consequences of the Hidden villages’ mistakes
Having these smaller villages participate in the war illustrates why Madara/Obito started this war in the first place. They are physical evidence of why the world is rotten and filled with hatred.
With the Hidden Villages uniting against a common enemy for the first time, it seemed as if Madara’s reasoning was flawed.
There actually was peace, real peace, so why continue fighting? However, real people fighting alongside him would strengthen his ideology.
2. Conflict within the allied shinobi forces
The Hidden Villages have been fighting against each other ever since they were founded, with 3 world wars even breaking out. They had united against a common enemy for the first time in history in the war arc.
This means that the majority of the allied shinobi forces hated and mistrusted each other before this war began.
There could have been many ways for Obito to exploit this, making the shinobi forces fight themselves instead of him. He did in a way, but it wasn’t because of the villages’ hatred for each other.
A villain as cunning and intelligent as Obito could have used this tactic during the war.
Show the consequences of 3 Shinobi World Wars
Many shinobi had lost friends, and family, and were forced to do heinous acts to protect their village. Many of them had even fought in the Third Shinobi World War.
Hence, it would make perfect sense for this hatred and mistrust to resurface again during the war arc.
For all the pain and suffering the shinobi had to endure during the previous wars, one speech of Gaara shouldn’t be enough to remove this.
Kakashi lost his 2 best friends, Tsunade lost her lover, and A lost his father. Like these examples, every shinobi has a unique story. Highlighting these unique stories would create another layer of suspense for the story.
Show the audience that you can overcome hatred
If there’s one thing that story of Naruto shows us, it’s how thin of a line there is between love and hate. No matter how deep into darkness someone might have fallen, there is always room for empathy and change.
Having the allied forces overcome their hatred would not only be a decisive moment for the war and the world’s future but also illustrate what Naruto has been about for all these years.
3. More Deaths
The Akatsuki had a powerful army with an immense number of white Zetsu and of course, the many shinobi reanimated by Kabuto with Edo Tensei. An army as formidable as this one should be able to do a lot of damage, and even kill some important characters.
The early fights of the Naruto War Arc lacked suspense and were won quite easily, despite the appearance of many kage level shinobi (defeated Akatsuki members, former Kage, Hanzō).
We feared these fighters at some point, making us worry for our characters’ safety when they appeared onscreen.
Unfortunately, many of the fights were forgettable and didn’t impact the outcome of the war at all.
Set the tone early
The death of a major character early in the war would immediately let the audience know that a lot of danger awaits our characters. Every fight would be suspenseful because our favorite characters could potentially die.
Let the deaths impact the story
The death of a major character would certainly create suspense, but it would be wasteful to have no meaning behind it. For example, Neji’s death came as a surprise. However, it didn’t impact the further events of the war at all.
In order to make sure death has meaning behind it, it’s necessary for it to have consequences.
An example would be the sacrifice of an important character to save the people of another village. This relates back to our previous point. As it could be a decisive moment to make other shinobi overcome their hatred for other villages.
4. No Ten Tails Jinchuuriki
This is a hard change to make because many fans love the Ten-Tails jinchuuriki versions of Obito and Madara, but the inclusion of the Ten-Tails in the war brought some problems with it. We believe that these problems outweigh the upside the Ten-Tails brings.
A power difference that’s too big
Summoning the Ten-Tails meant that a huge power-up was required to defeat Obito and Madara. For this reason, there is a huge gap in power between Naruto and Sasuke at the beginning of the war compared to the end of the war.
Unfortunately, many characters were forced into the background as they were unable to fight alongside Naruto and Sasuke anymore.
Even characters like Hiruzen, Tobirama, and even Hashirama couldn’t make a difference, even though they were known as one of the strongest shinobi in history.
Battles were more about raw power
The power the Ten-Tails and the Sage of Six Paths gave our characters made it impossible for regular jutsu to have any effect. Even brilliant minds like Kakashi and Shikamaru would not be able to do any damage to Madara.
This made the show stray away from the way its fight scenes originally went and made the fight scenes more about raw power. This makes it harder to create unique and memorable fights.