Revenge of the Shinobi Review
Ninja games, you gotta love 'em. Jumping off walls, throwing shurikens at the enemy, performing feats of unimaginable and impossible skill....yep, they are normally awesome games were you get to do what ninjas are known to do best. But some games don't execute this well. I have yet to see a ninja game not work well when it is a platformer, and I don't think I'll ever see one. If you want to make a game, make it about ninjas, your sure to have a gem right there.....so long as you do it right. Yet, I fear and dread a certain ninja game for the Sega Genesis (Ha! I finally got it right! Take that seemingly hard but relatively easy to understand when you learn about it system). The Revenge of the Shinobi! After playing the games for this system, the graphics and game play seemed cheap (apart from Street Fighter, Gunstar Heros and Mortal Kombat), although the music was pretty good. Oh come on *causally waving an arm* it's a ninja game, how could it possibly be bad? Lets put our outfit on, grab a sword or two, and a controller as we look into Revenge of the Shinobi....sorry, I'll need that controller ifI am to review this game *takes controller off your hands*
So the story is that the world is at peace after a Ninja defeated the army of Neo Zeed. But three years later the Neo Zeed came back with an even stronger army, he killed your master and kidnapped your sweetheart. You have vowed to defeat every last on of his minions and bring an end to his plans of him taking over the world. Simple story. No magical artifacts? No secret sword? No hidden art or magic which the ninja can preform? Oh, you do? Ninjutsu? Well, I take that back. In this game, you have magical powers which all ninjas have, which is Ninjutsu. It's basically your special attack. But you get to choose from four! that's pretty sweet. A special attack for every occasion. Too bad there's no "Arrive on time to work" Ninjutsu. You get a fire Ninjutsu, which sends pillars of fire to scorch your opponent, a thunder Ninjutsu, which makes you invincible to every attack for a certain amount of time, a.....bouncy Ninjutsu...? This doubles your jumping abilities.... ok...and finally, an explosive Ninjutsu?!? What? A Ninjutsu so you can blow yourself up? I thought ninjas were meant to be silent and stealthy. Not very stealthy if suddenly you decide to blow up in someones face. This uses up a life.
As you start the game, you'll notice that you'll have a number of shuriken. You can throw these with the attack button when your not close to the enemy. You can double jump (yay ^^) but you can't wall jump (awww, =< what a shame). The double jump isn't even much of a double jump. You just sort of spin around and you go a little higher. But you can do something awesome during that time. If you try and throw a shuriken, you'll throw eight instead! It'll use up eight shruikens, but it looks damn cool. Also good when your fighting several enemies. When you are close, you use melee attacks (kicking and using a weapon) depending on weather you are crouching or standing. Now, all this sounds really cool and fun, but when you play it, that's when it's true colours shine. For starters, it's a little slow-paced. It looks like you are just casually walking through the level like "hey, there's a guy with a sword that wants to kill me. No biggy." Jumping is ok, but preforming the double jump is a bit of a pain, as you need to do it on the top of your jump. No ifs or buts. You either double jump for height, or you don't at all. In other games that have double jump, you could do that second jump whenever you like, no matter how close you are to the ground. That adds alevel of freedom that adds a lot to the game play. Here, they didn't think about it.
Another thing is why do all the enemies explode when they are defeated? Do they know the exploding Ninjutsu as well? Maybe they all preform it, but die just as they are about to unleash it. But then, why do the dogs explode? They surely can't know Ninjutsu....*screws up paper and chucks it behind his back, then I turn around* Damn! I missed.....hey, my theories on the obscure logic of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde when i did the review. *unscrews* "Everyone is bomb proof. Bomb man runs away when placing bomb. Why?" Ahhh, good times. *screws it up and chucks it behind his back* but I digress. The enemies are what I would have expected. There are samurais that can deflect your attacks, so you have to hit them while they are attacking, grunt ninjas that jump and throw stuff at you, and dogs....are just dogs...
You can smash crates for goodies. Such as more shurikens, extra lives, more Ninjutsu power, more powerful weapons and....what's this? Looks interesting, it's rectangular, got some wires on the outside. Might be armour. Ah, I can't seem to pick it up *box starts to flash* It's flashing, is that a good thing *box explodes*. Oh come on! Ninjas. Don't. Use. Explosives! What makes you think that *someone whispers in my ear* t-this bad guy isn't a ninja? What? Uses his beard to attack? Don't be silly. Well, this "Neo Zeed" isn't a ninja, so I will let him off for that with his traps and exploding guards. Sorry man.
Now this game is hard. When ever you die, you go back to the start of the level, which is annoying, given the low health and abundance of enemies. You are also given pretty much no recovery time, so you better be good at how you attack your enemy. Not that hard, but the game play is rather annoying. A thing they got right was the bamboo, which seems to resemble spikes in this game (the first level). This is one of the few games that spikes injure you, rather than kill you as you ever so slightly brush your hand on one. I got to a boss fight, but could not land a hit on the guy. He seemed invincible. I tried attacking from above, attacking while he attacked, trying to attack his back....nothing. Ninjutsu seems the only thing that works. I tried the exploding one on my last life....wasn't such a smart move =P
Overall, I give this game a 6.6/10 This game seems terrible to me. The graphics are far too gloomy and grim, but he is a ninja, and ninjas normally travel during night. The music seems repetitive and boring, but not all that bad. The game play, though, is a mystery. I don't know what they did. They somehow turned everything that seemed awesome, and stripped half of it's potential away, and then some. I think it's due to the fact it is slower paced than the other ninja games. Ninja Gaiden was a fast-paced action game were you could wall jump, required awesome skill to complete and above all, fast-paced. You don't get the rush of adrenaline like you do with the other games. But that's just me. I can see that this game is much loved by fans. So with that, I must combined the theories of explosion of this game and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to see if I can see why people aren't affected by bombs....