Source: Review Copy
Price: £32.99 (or £39.99 for the Master Collection), Gaiden Sigma 1, 2, 3 included. Controller necessary.
Where To Get It: Steam
Hrm… The Ham is strong with this one… I mean, it was hammy before, but Razor’s Edge… Yup, this is the hammiest of the Ninja Gaiden games, and also the one that brings in annoying stuff earlier, but… I have to admit, if it weren’t for the whiny voice of the first villain (as opposed to the mastermind), I think I’d have enjoyed the early portions of the game a bit more.
I still enjoyed them a fair bit, because slicing foes up in this one is fun, the blood is on by default, the ham is pretty hammy, and because unlike the other two, I gave in and played on Hero mode. Yes, I am not the best at these kinds of things. Yes, I still came extremely close to death several times in the first two levels alone, as while there is regeneration of health after fights, your max health lowers if you’ve taken serious wallopings until you can regenerate it all back at a health point.
Anyway, yes, Ninja Gaiden is a character action game, a game of jumping and running and clambering over maps, beating the snot out of enemies with combos and special attacks and all sorts of different weapons you can theoretically switch quickly between, ninja magic (Ninpo Arts), instakills on wounded enemies, and Flashy Boss Fights. It is my jam, even if I’m not terribly good at them.
Still… It’s time to mention the thing I really should have mentioned for the first two games, but will mention here because it’s pretty much mandatory to get the hang of from level 2: The bow. Is. Trash. Yes, it will instakill some enemies. Yes, for some enemies, it will auto-target. Yes, if you hold the aim button, you can switch enemies easily and it locks on most of the time. But also yes, this takes up valuable dodging time, murdering time, and seeing projectiles coming at you time.
Graphically, it’s solid. I won’t say it’s the prettiest, as it feels a little out of date, but it is pretty, the characters are designed well, and I can definitely tell when someone’s pulled out a gun. The music, also, is nice, it’s largely accessible, with subtitles and so on, it’s checkpointed well…
And of the three Sigmas, it’s… Not the one I’d most recommend. The other two bring the bow in a little later, as mentioned, it’s the hammiest of the three, and it’s also the one that uses the buttons most of all. Is it still good? Aye. Is it still peanut buttery, and not beginner friendly? Even the easiest difficulty is, make no mistake, a bit of a git… A fair bit of a git. But, since you’d be getting these in a trilogy pack anyways, well, at least try the peanut butter, since you’ve already resolved to taste it with one of the other two.
2 is still my favourite of the three, though.
The Mad Welshman wonders if we can get a BoJo mod, one where the model of the PM is slightly different, and there’s loud cheering and applause when… No? No? Well, it didn’t hurt to ask…