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Ninja Gaiden


Phelan
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I only just picked this up in the second hand section the other day. I have been playing PoP: Warrior Within and remembered people saying that at times it was similar and that the fighting was good.

Something else was niggling at me but I couldn't remember what the hell it was. Then I took it home, put in in my Xbox and it all came flooding back to me.

How fucking hard did they decide to make this game? Normal mode makes me want to actually hunt and kill the designers, I haven't even attempted to put on hard mode for fear of what I will do to my Xbox and anyone around within a ten metre radius.

It's fucking impossible. Enemies who appear right BEHIND you as you fight two other guys, WHILE some fucker is firing magic bolts at you, WHILE you try to flip, can't move and die ... AGAIN.

Who the hell enjoyed this game? It's not fun. It seems to have sapped all fun out of life. It's grating. It's annoying. It's a fucking travesty of a game. Sure it looks nice but it's combat is unbelievable. Even when you think you have it all figured out it turns out you don't. And you die again.

Don't even get me started on the horsemen.

I want to take it back, but someone might actually buy it and go through what I did. I think I'll do an Atari and bury it in the back garden.

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For me the graphics didn't live up to my expectations - however, I've barely played it in recent times and not got far at all. Maybe it looks a lot better after the initial stages?

I don't like frustrating games at all, so fear this will get a short attention span from me anyway.

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It's probably my game of the year. Yes, it seems impossible at first, yes, it get's very frustrating from time to time. But when you stick with it, invest some time, figure out why you died and adopt your strategy accordingly it's one of the most rewarding games ever. When you die it's because you're not good enough, never because the game is unfair. And the camera is nigh-on perfect as it is, as far as I'm concerned.

When I first played it on Normal I was killed about 10 times when I first encountered the horseman. After completing it on Normal I tried the first couple of levels on Hard and guess what - I beat the horseman the first time. The game forces you to improve your skill so much it's untrue.

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Maybe my patience has gone for really tough games, but this one did me in. In the first 5 minutes I got a huge amount of fun from it, getting some great kills against the general ninja contingent.

Then I got to the first boss...

..and died horribly.

Then went through that whole proces again... and again.... and again. Taking 15 minutes to get to the same spot 10 times and then just getting slaughtered is enough for a game to lose any fun it once provided for me, so I'm not bothered trying ever since

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It becomes a lot easier once you learn to block. I just got fed up with the respawning enemies. Once an area is cleared it should stay cleared.

File alongside Ikaruga - too hard for it's own good. Also like Metroid Prime 2, a Ninja Gaiden sequel would not perform too well at retail due to memories of it's overly hard prequel.

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The difficulty harks back to the days of Jet Set Willy and, well, any game on a home computer system. There aren't many games of this generation which are so punishingly hard on the default setting (Maximo springs to mind) so it can be a shock to the system. If you have the time to invest, then it won't seem so hard. The trouble is that once we leave school, free time becomes a precious commodity and spending it on Ninja Gaiden may not be such a wise investment.

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I was thinking about this recently. If someone broke into my house and stole all my games, as long as they left me with Halo 2, San Andreas and Ninja Gaiden I wouldn't be too bothered.

It's easily one of my favourite games. The combat system is just a total joy once you've got it, especially after you've learnt all the moves. The respawning enemies are great - it gives you some sword-fodder to break up the back-tracking, and also lets you pump up your money reserves.

I didn't mind repeating sections umpteen times because just playing through them again is enjoyable and rewarding, and no two battles are ever the same (unlike an FPS, when it's often 'shoot that corner of the room, move behind that box. Shoot guy who appears to my left. Bugger dead again').

I think you have to really, really enjoy the basic gameplay to get on with this game, as it is crushingly hard when you start out. Persevere past level two, and it all clicks into place.

The first Hurricane Pack download was too hard however. Did anyone get Hurricane Pack 2? What's that like?

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It's probably my game of the year. Yes, it seems impossible at first, yes, it get's very frustrating from time to time. But when you stick with it, invest some time, figure out why you died and adopt your strategy accordingly it's one of the most rewarding games ever. When you die it's because you're not good enough, never because the game is unfair. And the camera is nigh-on perfect as it is, as far as I'm concerned.

When I first played it on Normal I was killed about 10 times when I first encountered the horseman. After completing it on Normal I tried the first couple of levels on Hard and guess what - I beat the horseman the first time. The game forces you to improve your skill so much it's untrue.

too right.

I love Ninja Gaiden. Maybe I'm just a closet masochist but I like games that actually make me have to turn off the xbox in frustration before thinking of a strategy whilst washing the dishes or whatever and then run back to get past the bit.

if anything, some games are too easy nowadays.

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At least for me, it was not so much the general difficulty of the game as the limited pleasure I got out of it that made me take it back. Got past both of those first dreaded bosses without much of a hassle but just didn't find it very enjoyable.

I can see why others like it but sadly it didn't do anything for me.

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Absolutely. Think of Ninja Gaiden like Halo on Heroic.

The crucial difference for me, between Ninja Gaiden and Halo even on Legendary, is the save system. Rock hard with a modern, instant back-in-the-game, finely placed checpoint system like Halo? Bring it on. Limited save points that got old 5 years ago? No thanks. That's why I agve up on Ninja Gaiden when I was attacked by the ninjas on horseback.

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It is really hard, but really rewarding for it. Tomonobu Itagaki has created a game that I think will still be entertaining me and challenging me 5 years from now. It's a definite, considered old-skool approach that was always going to piss off as many gamers as it enamoured.

The fact is that most things about the game (bar the camera and the odd dificulty spike, arguably) are beautifully designed and balanced, and the combat is especially so, and when you get the knack it is fantastically rewarding. But getting that knack is harder than most games, unarguably.

If you want to be the Ninja you're really going to have to work for it, and it teaches you several punishing, harsh lessons along the way. I found victory all the sweeter for it, though. I totally get Pob's statement above; this is a game that can consume you and your gaming time for years if you let it, and it's always immensely satisfying and rewarding.

Blocking and counters are the two things you really need to master to make progress, IMHO. It's worth the time investment to get your head around them, it really is. But it's not the sort of game you can dabble in; you've got to give it your full attention for a concentrated period.

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I'm no ultra gamer (although I have completed Bug-a-boo the Flea on the Spectrum TWICE) but I really found NG to be just right in terms of difficulty. As you progress, the enemies get theoretically tougher and yet at the same time are actually easier due to your sharpened skill. I hesitate to call this generation of gamers who find NG hard weak...actually no I don't, you're weak. WEAK!

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The best console game of the year...easily.

Anyone whos complaining its too hard just hasnt played it enough. When you get it its quite possible to complete the whole thing without coming close to dying.

Its no where near as hard as any of the other games mentioned, or at least its a different type of hard, its similar to Super Monkey Ball in that factor, once youve figured it out its just pure fun, as long as you are concentrating its not hard at all.

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