My name is Chris, I’m an editor at PC Games and I use the current Saure-Gurken time to catch up on games I missed back then, to return to favorites from the past and to give games that were too crazy for me a second chance. I am sharing my experiences with you here at 16 days of 16 bit.
Tag 5: The Ninja Warriors
When I think of my favorite games from the 90s, I quickly end up with the genre of brawlers. No matter if Final Fight, Streets of Rage, Cadillacs & Dinosaurs or Turtles in Time – I love sidescroll beating! However, I was still a school child at the time and didn’t read any game magazines. I chose games by name or cover in the shop or in the brochure from Theo-Kranz-Versand. Some brawler pearls have escaped me and now have to be made up for. This also includes The Ninja Warriors developed by Natsume.
The title is set in a dystopian future in which the mutant cyborg Banglar, the tyrant, rules the world with the help of his brainwashed army of soldiers and mutants. Since the resistance itself does not succeed against the overpowering regime, they build three ninja cyborgs, which are supposed to bring down Banglar and his hordes in a suicide squad. Of course, the player takes over one of these ninja cyborgs.
Those: PC Games
As a fan of Cannon trash films, I put Ninja Warriors in my fat nerd heart after the story is explained. More 90s nonsense is simply not possible! With the gameplay, however, I have to adjust a bit, because Ninja Warriors does some things differently than most of the brawlers from that time. In contrast to Streets of Rage or Turtles in Time, you cannot orientate yourself up and down, but only walk from left to right. So it is not that easy to avoid enemy attacks.
Although only three action buttons are used, the more important thing is to use the various abilities of the characters. With Kamaitachi or Kunoichi, for example, you can perform a kick attack over a longer distance. However, I mainly opt for the somewhat slower, but powerful ninja, as its special attacks are best for me. So I can briefly fly in the air, dash forward with the jet pack or perform a jump-stomp attack.
Another special feature of Ninja Warriors is the special display directly below the life energy. In contrast to many other sidescroll beat-em-ups, carrying out a special attack is not tied to life energy. If the special bar is full, you can let go of a devastating attack. The bar fills up again if you are not hit and deal properly yourself. If the bar is full, it will not be reset by a simple hit, but it will be reset if you are knocked to the ground.
Since the opponents often come from both sides and defeat you, you should use the special attack in a tactically wise way. After all, the boss’s bar should be full again.
The normal ranks of opponents range from soldiers to ninjas, snipers and monkey fighters with blades to huge bugs. But above all the bosses convince with varied design and heat you up on the normal of a total of two levels of difficulty.
Those: PC Games
Although Ninja Warriors can be tough at times, it never really gets unfair. You only have one life, but you have infinite continues and there are one or even two checkpoints depending on the level. Nevertheless, the title remains crisper than, for example, a Streets of Rage. Sometimes it is better to memorize the sections.
I really enjoyed my first foray into the world of Ninja Warriors. I have to admit that I haven’t quite played it through because at some point my patience ran out, but just like I’ve been doing it for years with my brawler favorites Streets of Rage 2 or Turtles in Time, I always become Ninja Warriors return again.
The sound is great, the game looks good, the action is fun, the presentation is great, and it’s just wonderfully satisfying to pound pixel bastards in the face. If you are looking for a cool beater for your retro collection, you should get Ninja Warriors. For everyone else, the remake The Ninja Saviors: Return of the Warriors has been available for PS4 and Nintendo Switch for some time. However, I will first play through the original.
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