Imagine a world where the ridiculous is
plausible and the art of Ninjitsu is the only thing between us
and them. Modern times, monsters and Ninjas, yes my friends, that
is the story of Ninja Blade as gamers are transformed into
a relatively new Ninja novice.
Reminiscent of games such as Ninja
Gaiden, God of War and Devil May Cry, Ninja Blade revisits the franchise
where cutscenes are driven by carefully crafted button combos and
players fight an almost unending line of villains as players tackle some
of the most remarkable maneuvers in a video game (visually) in a long
abilities. To help defeat the genetically mutated monsters, players
will have the special abilities of Ninja Vision and Todomé Attack at
their fingertips. Enabling Ninja Vision will allow players to detect
and analyze potential enemy weak points, secret paths and hidden
information within the environment. Beware, though, that while using
Ninja Vision, characters become susceptible to excess damage. Todomé
Attack is a special attack that destroys an enemy character’s core
(heart), by dealing a fatal wound. Balanced and calculated use of
both these abilities will be critical to progressing through the
Variety of weapons,
tools and Ninjutsu — specialized Ninja powers — offer an enticing
array of options. Varied environments force players to think
strategically about which set of weapons and tools will be most
effective at conquering their way through different levels.
Everything from dual-wielding swords to grapple wire hooks and
grenades has distinctive features and characteristics, so choose
wisely! Ninjutsu is a special power that results in an explosive
electrical force to either stun enemies or protect oneself from
attack. Only true Ninja Masters can achieve this technique.
quick-time events. Scattered throughout integral parts of the
storyline, characters will come across various quick-time events
where players will have the opportunity to directly interact with
in-game cut scenes. Quick reflexes will be rewarded as players
interact with controller buttons as directed on screen during
“Ninja Blade” offers a fresh twist to the classic ninja saga by
basing all 3-D gaming maps directly from the actual skyscrapers and
building tops in modern-day Tokyo.
At its core, you need to stop the an army
of strange powerful monsters from destroying Tokyo and the scope is like
Cloverdale with buildings coming down around as you jump from building
to building, perform some amazing Silver Surfer like maneuvers on
missiles and fight many Godzilla like creatures in some carefully
The combat of the game is reminiscent of
games such as Devil May Cry as you perform some impressive feats as you
slice, dice and hack your way through the enemies that looks impressive,
however fails to deliver anything meaningful or deep.
Even though we've
seen it all before, there's something endearing about the game which
makes it a joy to continue. To spice things up, Ken has access to other
weapons such as his Dante inspired gigantic sword which is ideal for
certain enemies and is a blast to use. The combat maneuvers in the game are easy to master
with most gamers having no difficulty in mastering this aspect of the
title... in theory anyway!
While the majority of the game will be
spent exploring this visually impressive world where you fight foot
soldiers, run up walls and precariously walk on places that are humanly
impossible is where the fun starts in this game. These cinematics generally
include a timing game where you need to push certain buttons in order to
successfully move on such as A, B and X, and if you fail, the game will
rewind to start of the cinematic with Jumper (the movie) type
I think this is what makes the game so
appealing, trying to get to the next interactive cinemas to see what
outrageous events the developers has thrown at us and of course the
impressive boss battles that at times have been taken out of a Warner
Bros cartoon show at the unrealistic yet entertaining physics which our
hero Ken has found himself in.
Ken does have another super power with
"Ninja Vision" that slows down time in order for you to inflict more
damage to your enemies by selecting key damage spots. More super powers?
You betcha! Ken can access fire, wind and lightning... err
electricity which are deadly blades surrounded by these elemental
forces. These deadly forces are not only needed for battle but they assist with certain puzzles in the game.
Graphically, Ninja Blade is a truly
visually and surreal experience and the developers should be commended
in making the environments so compelling which really showcases the size
difference between Ken and bosses that he fights which is like David and
Goliath but bigger. Ken is
brilliantly modeled with some great texture details and is animated
extremely well as are all the other characters and cinematics in the
game. There were a few slowdowns but thankfully these are far and few.
In relation to the music, it suits the
genre perfectly and has hints of cheesiness as is the voice acting and
through a surround sound system, the special effects sound great.
Nothing memorable but the "cheese" aspect suits the gameplay, graphics
and story perfectly.
Although no online play per se, the title
does allow you to upload your scores to an online leader board and there
are some unlockable costumes and modifiers in single-player. To
complete the game, it took us around 8 hours to successfully finish,
maybe a little less but it was an entertaining experience, albeit we had
the feeling that it was all done before. The problem with Ninja Blade is
that once you have finished it, if offers very little in replay value.
If you have never played a game like Devil
May Cry, God of War or Ninja Gaiden before than you'll definitely enjoy
Ninja Blade, however for veteran gamers, they may find it a little
stale and repetitive. Even so, there was something compelling about this game,
perhaps it was the boss battles or the over the top story, it did have
some cool moments!