review
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POSTED 31/3/12


NINJA GAIDEN 3

Tecmo
PS3 (also on Xbox 360)

It’s the end of the world as we know it, and we feel fine...

A revered videogame series, many diehards have waited long and hard (if indeed that’s possible) for this latest Ninja Gaiden. They’ll almost certainly be disappointed.

Gone is the deft strategy, carefully orchestrated precision and the reality that one solitary enemy could induce your demise. Weapon selection’s slashed – to slashy-slashy swordiness, chuckable daggers and a crossbow kinda arrangement. Yes, Ninja Gaiden aficionados will wanna tear off this one’s head and shit down its neck – strategically and precisely.

However, anybody craving a thrilling thrill-laden thrill ride is in for a treat. Recently, Asura’s Wrath aimed for the bit-of-fighting-and-a-whole-lotta-quick-time-events (insert Led Zep guitar SQUOWRLLL here) target. It was OK, but you didn’t feel overly involved, and it hardly nudged red on the ooh-ooh-ooh excitingometer. Ninja Gaiden 3 – or to please old-schoolers Not Ninja Gaiden 3 - flips that. Shitloads of fighting and occasional QTEs, equalling more excitement than nursing home inmates at a Viagra van crash.

You, ninjatastic Ryu, have to save the world. You start by swooping into London and going evisceration-a-gogo on a relentless stream of hired goons. Blood splatters everywhere, even on the ‘camera’, which shooms and zooms like Tarantino drank a fucktonne of red cordial before taking its reins. Cue more henchmen hordes and bosses galore, often in set pieces that’ll leave you gasping once completed.

Controls like wall running just work – hey, Prince of Persia, take note. These – and most else - function instinctively. Some may argue it’s heavily scripted, and it is. But there’s plenty to do, an engaging, sometimes comically ‘so-why-so-serious?’ story and, crucially, it’s bloody exciting to be amidst.

It’s not traditional Ninja Gaiden, but this rebirth shows how to do an interactive movie right. Think of it as Kill Bill, just without the yellow jumpsuit.

Oh yeah – Leonard Bernstein!

take me back to the start...

 



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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2017. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.