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  Review: Ninja Gaiden
On 04/15/04 by Jonathan 'Ringo2000' Sharpe

Developer: Team Ninja
Publisher: Tecmo
Release Date: 03/02/04
ESRB: �M� for Mature
Official Site:
Platform(s): Xbox
Played On: Xbox

When I first dropped by the game store to pick up my pre-ordered copy of Ninja Gaiden, I was already expecting many good things. This had been a title that I had been waiting on for, well, a long ass time, and I really didn�t feel there was any way this game could end up disappointing me. Yes I had been annoyed at the constant push back of the release date (especially the one right at Christmas) but I still felt that it would end up being well worth the date. And of course, it was.
:: ninja gaiden ::
:: ninja gaiden ::
:: ninja gaiden ::
You play Ryu Hayabusa, whose clan has the task of guarding the Dark Dragon Blade. However as we all know, when there�s a powerful sword that can cause great evil and harm, someone is going to try to take it. That someone is Doku, who ends up destroying Ryu�s village, trying to acquire the sword for his master. Now some of you might be thinking that this sounds like a horrible plot and that it would, in some way, ruin the game. However it doesn�t, not in any way shape or form. Mostly because the game is so incredibly perfect, at almost every moment.

Really, from the moment that I started the game, I was impressed. Well, impressed would probably be an understatement. More like I was shocked and amazed. The first thing that really impressed me was the cut-scenes. You could tell just how much work and effort went into them, and the time that went into actually making them look good. There were moments were I found myself actually looking forward to a cut-scene, just because I enjoyed watching them so much. Another thing that greatly impressed me was the loading times, or the lack there of. There were a small amount of brief loading times between chapters and between large parts of the world, but that was about it.

Another thing that makes this game truly enjoyable is the difficulty of it. Saying that this title is hard is an understatement, simply because it�s so much more than that. The easiest mode in the game is �normal�, and even on that mode, you will find yourself constantly caught in moments were you could be killed at any second. There is no �easy� mode in this game, and that�s part of what makes it so much fun, at least in my opinion.
:: ninja gaiden ::
:: ninja gaiden ::
:: ninja gaiden ::
I was constantly sitting in the edge of my seat, fingers numb from doing numerous combos, hoping for that one last strike that would defeat my enemy. And that�s what made me enjoy this game so incredibly much. There really wasn�t ever a dull moment, were I was bored and just wanted to get on to the next part of the game. I was constantly having enemies thrown at me, over and over, and the constant action just made we want to play more. And if you are in any way expecting the bosses in this game to go easy on you, then you are seriously misguided, because they wont. I can still remember facing the first boss, and thinking to myself the battle would be over in seconds. And in a way I was right, because a few seconds into the battle Ryu was thrown across the room like a limp rag doll. So whether you are facing regular enemies in the game, or the bosses, you can be sure to always expect a challenge.

The controller set up is also very well done, and no matter how you play, I can almost guarantee that you will feel right at home as you play and carry out various combos. Yes, in the beginning it might take some time to get use to it all, but after a bit of playing time, the controls will just start to feel right. And that�s really the only way I can describe it.�

In the end, I would definitely recommend picking up this title if you own an Xbox. Ninja Gaiden takes full advantage of everything the Xbox is meant to be, and meant to be able to do. There was never a moment that I was dissatisfied or disappointed by this title, and it was definitely worth the wait.

Wow, just what can I say here other than they were amazing and wonderful. I mean truly, I think this could be one of the best looking games on the XB to date, and I say that with full confidence. I was constantly impressed by the way the game looked, as I went from one chapter to the next. One tricky aspect when making a game, in my opinion, is the water, and Team Ninja pulled it off perfectly. Sometimes I could almost swear the water was real. Not to mention how smoothly things looked when I was running around, jumping on walls, and swinging my katana like there was no tomorrow. I really don�t think I ever came across were the frame rate lagged at all. The graphics in this game are very well done.

I can�t really say anything negative about the sound in Ninja Gaiden. First off the music is great. It in no way overpowers the sound effects in the game; rather it balances out with the sound effects quite nicely. And the sound effects of the game are also very well done, at least in my opinion. Things like hearing your swords cutting through the air, as well as hearing the sounds that come from the various weapons as you strike enemies, makes the game just that much better.

In a Word: Amazing

Word to the Publisher: I was more than impressed guys; this was definitely a kick ass game.

Final Score: 9.5/10

#1 - Cool_Cow - 04/15/04 @ 09:23 PM EST
....Its most definatly a kickass game. But your wrong about the loading times....Yea after ur in the game there quick...But every time when I first load my takes like 1-2 minutes to load. Very annoying
#2 - Anon@ - 04/15/04 @ 09:26 PM EST
No doubt, I just finished the game, truly amazing!
#3 - chiuyan - 04/15/04 @ 10:02 PM EST
I wish I was a ninja
#4 - Bulldog - 04/15/04 @ 10:05 PM EST
#5 - Megahurtz - 04/15/04 @ 10:25 PM EST
How can you not mention the horrible camera at all?!?
#6 - Physick - 04/15/04 @ 10:48 PM EST
Camera has its moments but I got used to hitting the R button so much it didnt affect me much anymore. I have beat it twice. Second time was on hard and HOLY SHIT did it take me forever. Lets just say I had to buy a new controller and some wall plaster. Now I think I will go thru the 3 Gaiden classic games.
/ /
#7 - Ringo2000 - 04/15/04 @ 10:55 PM EST
Same thing here Physick, it got to the point were the camera didn't really bug me that much at all.

But thats just me.
#8 - dougman - 04/15/04 @ 11:05 PM EST
Bad cameras are there only if you don't know how to use it.

playing on very hard now, and OOOHhhhhhh boy.... got my ass kicked by those axe swinging zombies...

#9 - Megahurtz - 04/15/04 @ 11:20 PM EST
I don't buy that at all. Yes, the player can adjust to the camera issues, learn to anticipate them, and compensate for them, but he wouldn't have to if it was designed properly in the first place.

Whoever thought that it was a good idea to have the right thumbstick pop you directly into 1st person sh/ve been so much easier if the thumbstick just panned the camera around in 3rd person and you clicked it to enter first person.
#10 - Bulldog - 04/15/04 @ 11:50 PM EST
#11 - dougman - 04/16/04 @ 01:51 AM EST
ya/ pretty lame.
but if you played Dead to Rights, clicking R is like second nature.

btw. Dead to Rights ROCKS (after level 3).
/ difficult is just like ninja gaiden, except with guns. Wait till you get to the chinese brothel.
/ /
#12 - sweetjimmy - 04/16/04 @ 10:18 AM EST
the NG camera does have issues. I didn't mind the system personally, but I did mind the fact that the Japanese guy that heads up team ninja said something like: "anyone who cannot make an intuitive camera system in a 3d game is just stupid". He was patting himself on the back when he said it but it was before NG had been released. hype mongering, basically.

Times like these that make me want a 'dipshit' stamp to press against people's foreheads.
/ /
#13 - Adopted - 04/16/04 @ 11:38 PM EST
mediocre game w/ un-neccessary difficulty shitty camera angle and weak story

only thing impressive was presentation (audio, graphics) ... if you don't count the vaseline covered CGI
Austin316 - 04/17/04 @ 04:34 PM EST
Yeah ... I feel about like Adopted. The audio and visuals were fantastic ... the control was great as well. The gameplay sucked a bit ... having to pause the game to drink potions and change weapons and shit, not to mention that there was no use at all for various (melee) weapons.

And the cut scenes were great for a VG but a little too plasticy. It really isn't that hard to make things look good in maya.

I'm actually still playing it (I'm actually playing right now) ... I think I'm on chapter 11. The camera does suck, but you sort of get used to it, and yes, right thumbstick should adjust camera not snap into 1st person.

Finally ... I'd be interested in playing the classic games, but the only way is to get all the scarabs or some shit. I am *not* going to play through the game again ... couldn't they have made it easier to play their shit?
/ / / /
#15 - spank_it - 04/17/04 @ 10:22 PM EST
what i found interesting about the review was that he doesnt mention why he thought the game was so great in any detail. it was like it was written by a 5 year old that had just had finished talking about it in the playground with his friends.

there is nothing in this review that makes me want to check it out since it's most dribble with alot of adjectives thrown in.
#16 - Adopted - 04/18/04 @ 02:31 AM EST
tell us how you really feel spanks
#17 - dougman - 04/18/04 @ 04:25 AM EST
beating up crap is fun. Decapitations and blood makes it better.
therefore: ninja gaiden is good.


/ Actually it isnt that fun, there should be a multiplayer mode. Co-op Please!
/ /
#18 - Anon@ - 04/18/04 @ 12:50 PM EST
/ /
#19 - sweetjimmy - 04/18/04 @ 02:31 PM EST
damn, spank. let's try to be a little more constructive with our criticism, eh?

/ ringo did go over what he thought made the game good: Controls, difficulty, and cutscenes, to name a few.
#20 - Austin316 - 04/18/04 @ 02:49 PM EST
In general ... from the ones I've read, don't count on GG reviews to be in depth, just a thumbs up or down with a few paragraphs in between.

If you want a more in depth review I'm sure gamespot or others would do you better.
#21 - Bulldog - 04/18/04 @ 08:47 PM EST
#22 - sweetjimmy - 04/18/04 @ 11:57 PM EST
#23 - spank_it - 04/19/04 @ 01:11 AM EST
of course, if that's all the game is about then the review was spot on!

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