NINJA GAIDEN 3
PS3 (also on Xbox 360)
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!