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As I said
before, I love me some Ninja Gaiden. So I was really looking forward to seeing
some real gameplay at this year’s E3. My wish came true and that’s exactly what
I got. While not perfect, I was certainly pleasantly surprised by what I saw
for the most part. I’m just going to break this down simply, the good and the
bad from an avid Ninja Gaiden player.
Combat – Even with mid-fight QTE’s I still really really want to play this game, like right frikin’ now! I love the look of the new steel on bone mechanics they have been talking about and I’m pretty sure OT’s are back from Ninja Gaiden 2. Ultimate Techniques seem to be tied into Ryu’s right arm, kill a certain amount of enemies and it becomes usable. This is an interesting departure from how they have been done in previous games, especially seeing how integral on-landing ultimate techniques were in those games.
Violence is back – Now I’m not saying the game has to be violent to be good, but when the emphasis is on cutting up dudes, you need to have some blood in the game. There was an overwhelmingly negative response to the purple mist in Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2, so it seems Team Ninja have taken note of something. I sure do hope they have been taking other notes, but it’s a step in the right direction.
No trust me, your stomach will look soooo much cooler on the floor
The Enemies – It’s great to see more human enemies, this makes sense considering the ideals they have for the game, and machine enemies were way overused in Ninja Gaiden 2. There also appears to be a lot less per encounter this time around, NG2 threw hordes of enemies at you sometimes but they were about as sharp as a bucket of hammers. It’s always better to be fighting a smaller number of smarter enemies, which is hopefully what they’re going for here.
Stealth Sections – This has always seemed like the one thing Ninja Gaiden was missing, not a huge deal but they looked implemented well enough and show off some great looking animations. They seem simple but I don’t think that’s a bad thing, Arkham Asylum proved beyond doubt that a simple but reliable stealth mechanic is better than a flawed but complicated one.
Izuna Drop is back – This needs little explaining, you can’t have a Ninja Gaiden game without this move. It’s sort of like Scorpions spear move from Mortal Kombat, always a great way to win some easy points with the fans.
OK, so the Bad
Quick Time Events – I’m not going to jump on the band wagon of bashing these. Used right, I like them. But this is supposed to be a Ninja Gaiden game and they have no place being in it. There just seemed to be an abundance of them in the videos, I can deal with a few, maybe in boss fights but certainly not in regular encounters interrupting my normal moves.
No no no no no no no no no no, and no, and no no no, aaaaand NO!
The Wall Climbing – Oh dear god this looks horrible. I’m not even going to bother stating the obvious as to why, just please remove this from the game. Wall jumping is way cooler and already works so why the hell are they replacing that with something that looks this clunky.
That’s about all I have to say until some more gameplay is shown, I really hope we see some new enemy types in the near future. Ninja Gaiden has always had unique enemies for you to face and is an important aspect of the franchise. Be sure to tear up the comments below with your impressions of the game so far!