Ninja Gaiden III
  Game by Tecmo
  For the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)

General FAQ/Walkthrough
  Written by Reverend Eric "Vegita" Johnson (VegitaBOD@aol.com)
  Version 3.14

Sections:

I    - Introduction
II   - Game Story
III  - General Information
     A   - Controls
     B   - The Screen
     C   - Items/Weapons
IV   - Walkthrough
V    - The Bosses
VI   - Various
     A   - Eagles, Flags, Drones, and You
     B   - Revision History
     C   - Thanks
     D   - No Thanks


============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================
     --------------------------I:  Introduction--------------------------
============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================

Welcome.  My name is Eric Johnson, sometime answering to the moniker "Vegita" 
and sometimes simply going by Reverend Eric.  I see you want help for the 
Nintendo game "Ninja Gaiden III".  Good for you!  This increasingly difficult 
game is NOT an easy task, so there's no shame in turning to someone (even me) 
for help.  Besides, I've been playing this game ever since it came out, losing 
myself at least once a year to the entire Ninja Gaiden trilogy.  Hey, it's 
tradition, and it's one that I've upkept for a while now.  As such, I like to 
think of myself as proficient in the game, beating it numerous times.  
Therefore, writing a guide for it shouldn't be TOO much of a task...

First off, let's get one thing straight: Even though I like to think of myself 
as Vegita (baha), I will try to write from an un-biased point of view (although 
I still think I'm the best at everything).  Second of all, if I catch anyone 
copying all or part of this FAQ, ANY part of this FAQ (not counting little, 
inconsequential sentences like "First off, let's get one thing straight), I 
will destroy you.  I will rip you limb from limb like the excessively weak 
individual you are, and then I will sue you for copyright infringement.  Well, 
ok, maybe I'll just sue you, but if I got the chance I'd certainly go for the 
ripping of limbs from other limbs.

Third of all, I do not own the rights to this game, the names of the characters 
in this game or FAQ, or have any ownership whatsoever of this game (except for 
the cartridge sitting in my room, that is).  Those are the property of their 
respective owners.  If I find a website with this FAQ on it, and it has been 
changed in any way, does not give me proper credit, or is selling it without my 
knowledge and consent, then I WILL have my lawyers contact that site.  Are we
clear (this means YOU, Vertsk8!)?


============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================
     ---------------------------II: Game Story---------------------------
============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================

The Ninja Ryukenden (original title, meaning "Ninja Dragon Attack Story") 
series first appeared in arcades in 1988, initially created as an Arcade beat-
em-up game.  This ridiculously difficult game depicted a single Ninja, named 
Ryu Hayabusa (and - oddly enough for a ninja - unarmed for the majority of the 
game), sent on a quest to avenge his father's death.  Ninja Gaiden ("Ninja 
Side Story", as the game was renamed for Americans) failed to capitivate 
audiences, most likely due to its insane challenge rating, troublesome 
controls, lack of plot, and general muddiness in gameplay.  You would beat up 
enemies, using the same few punches and kicks, then press onward to a boss that 
could kill you in 1 hit.  There's nothing quite like an excessively difficult 
game, designed to suck the quarters out of your life, to make you appreciate 
home consoles.  Thankfully, the Ninja Gaiden saga did not end at the arcades.  
Tecmo had enough foresight to know that home consoles were the way to go, and 
so that is the way they went.

The following year, Tecmo released Ninja Gaiden as a Nintendo Entertainment 
System cartridge.  Shunning the previous style of game, Ninja Gaiden instead 
took on a 2-dimensional platformer mode of gameplay.  Once again thrust into 
the role of Ryu Hayabusa, this time you were introduced to a plotline through 
the use of cinematics within the game.  It opens with a panning shot of a 
field, where 2 ninjas are dueling.  Upon one of them falling after a jumping 
slash, we are given a narrative through text - the fallen Ninja, a man named 
Ken, has left his son Ryu a note explaining where he has gone.  Reading the 
not, Ryu finds that - should Ken not return from his trip - he is to take the 
family's sacred Dragon Sword and travel overseas to America.  Once there, he 
needs to meet a man named Walter Smith, whom was an aquantance of Ken's.  This
is where the first stage picks up, with Ryu travelling down a street towards 
Jay's Bar, combatting lowly enemies and using his impressive jumping, climbing, 
and bounding skills to traverse the landscape.  The plot of this game would 
eventually take Ryu to caves, forests, lakes, ice fields, mountains, jungles, 
and temples, and would have Ryu facing off against expert fighters, demons, and 
a powrful magician - Jaquio - seeking to unleash a Demon's wrath upon the
world.

...of course, Ryu defeated Jaquio, killed the demon, and saved the girl.  As 
for his father, he may or may not have survived - it depends on whether or not 
you read the "Worlds of Power" Nintendo book.  Although short, I found the book 
to be surprisingly well written, and suggest picking it up (although it does 
try to avoid violence as much as possible, proof enough by the lack of a knife 
in Ryu's hand on the cover of the book).  Now, back to the story of the game.

Ninja Gaiden was a huge success, bringing wonderfully creative changes to the 
platform genre.  The cinematic elements helped tell the plot of the game quite 
well, and the action within the game was top-notch - granted, the difficultly 
could get insanely at some points, almost to the point of smashing a controller 
out of frustration, but these sections COULD be bypassed.  I still think it's a 
true test of a gamer's skill and patience to be able to beat Ninja Gaiden I.

As you might have expected, Ninja Gaiden had a sequel.  "Ninja Gaiden II - The 
Dark Sword of Chaos" continued the plot of the first by introducing a new 
villain, Ashtar, claiming that he was the master of Jaquio.  Ashtar decides to 
press onward with his plans, unimpressed by Jaquio's death and failure to 
summon the demon.  Elsewhere in the world, Ryu is attacked by men dressed in
the same garb as Barbarian (the first boss in Ninja Gaiden I).  He fights his 
way through the enemies, only to find himself facing off against a strange 
monster named Dando in a trainyard.  Upon beating his adversary, a blond man 
from the shadows steps forward and tells Ryu of what he needs to do next 
(before disappearing back into the shadows).  Thus, Ryu is sent on another
quest, this one culminating in another gigantic life-or-death battle inside a 
giant fortress (and, oddly enough, also taking place in a 3-part battle with 
Jaquio...doesn't that guy EVER stay dead?).  So Ryu defeats the madman again, 
and everyone goes home happy.

Although lacking in the challenge of its predecessor, Ninja Gaiden II was still 
a huge hit.  Logically, NG III would follow shortly.  Thus, let us fast forward 
to Ninja Gaiden's opening story:

                       ---Ninja Gaiden III: Prologue---

Irene Lew, the CIA operative that befriended Ryu in NG I and II, is snooping 
around a factory in a rocky, cliff-edged landscape.  Unfortunately, she is not 
as secretive as she hopes to be, and is spotted by a shadowy figure.  This 
figure chases Irene to a cliff, where she is unfortunately left with no other 
escape routes.  Turning to see whom has been giving her chase, she is 
shocked to find that it is Ryu.  He laughs and wonders if she realizes that her 
life is over.  Wanting an explanation, Irene is instead treated to more threats 
- anyone who has seen the inside of the laboratory is not allowed to live, and 
so she shall now die.  Irene, backing away, takes one step too far and slips 
from the cliff, falling to her doom.  "Ryu" looks over the cliff, then returns 
to the factory.

Ryu (the real one) finds that Irene has gone missing, and sets out to locate 
her whereabouts.  In his searching, he finds that she has been murdered, and 
that HE is the one that killed her.  Knowing that he obviously did not, he 
retraces her steps, arriving at the factory scene where she died.  Ryu enters 
the factory, and is immediately beset by strange creatures and machines...

      ..=-++x,.                         ...and thus, Ninja Gaiden III begins.
   x##++x+=++x###
  +##  =xx++++++X#=
  ## -Xxx++++++++x#
   # #x+====+++++=#
   # #+=-x#+x++++++#
   # -+-#x- ,,;;;=X#        ~Ryu sez:  "Let's take out these mad creatures
   # .=############              and find Irene's killer, yo!"
   ;# =## -+#####-
    #.-+#-+-,.. #
   # - ++++++##+#
  -x#,=+,==+xxx#.
### X ##X;,-##
##- #+x;+###X#.


============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================
     -------------------------III:  General Info-------------------------
============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================

Before we get to the walkthrough, it helps if you know how to control Ryu in 
his plight.  Therefore, let's discuss the controls of the game, how to read the 
screen, and the various items you collect.  How's that sound?  But before we 
get to that, I should probably give a quick rundown on how to play the game.

 _____________
_~A~  Gameplay_________________________________________________________________
 =============

Ryu Hayabusa (of the clan Hayabusa) moves about in this horizontal (and 
occasionally vertical) platformer, using his weapons and maneuvering skills to 
both dispatch enemies in his way and leap from platform to platform.  Each 
stage has a variety of powerups, items, and enemies, all located in the same 
locations each time (thankfully, though, the "elusion" glitch has been removed; 
for more info, go down to the "Various" section and read up on it); however, 
the difficulty arises when particular combination of enemy types and their 
locations are intertwined with the jumps you have to make.  Predecessors of 
this game, such as Castlevania and Super Mario Brothers, were among the first 
to create such a concept...however, the Ninja Gaiden series took this 
conceptual style and sharpened it to a point of mass difficulty.  Enemies, 
projectiles, and tricky jumps all combined into a wicked ballet of evil, your 
ninja dancing about the screen as he fights for his life.

...but I digress.  Ryu jumps, climbs, and slashes through his opponents, using 
special attacks to handle enemies in different styles (above and below, 
distanced, etc), ultimately allowing him to progress further in the stage until 
he reaches the boss.  These boss figures have a lifebar similar to Ryu's, and 
he must work their lifebar down to zero while keeping his own intact (duh...to 
quote Yogi Berra: "the best way to win is to have more points than the other 
guy when time runs out").  If Ryu's life runs out, or if he falls onto spikes 
or off of the screen into a pit, then he loses a life and is forced to restart 
at the beginning of the stage (or certain checkpoints, if he has reached one); 
he also loses whatever Ninjitsu Art he possessed, resorting to the Windmill 
Shuriken again (it is his base art, and he always starts with it).  If he loses 
all of his lives, he must use a continue (you get 5) and then restarts the 
whole stage over.  Run out of continues and it's game over, chum.

So that's it - run out of life, lose a life.  Lose all lives, lose a continue.  
Lose all continues...and you lose the game.  Wee!!!

   _____________
___~B~  Controls_______________________________________________________________
   =============

A BUTTON                    - Attack.  By pressing the A BUTTON, Ryu will swing
                              the Dragon Sword horizontally in front of him.
                              This is his primary attack, never requiring
                              anything special to be performed.  He'll never
                              lose his sword, so make good use of it.  It may
                              not have that good range or damage, but it's a
                              weapon you'll always have.
DIRECTIONAL PAD UP + A      - Ninjitsu Attack.  By holding UP on the
                              Directional Pad and pressing the A BUTTON, Ryu
                              will perform a Ninjitsu Attack.  Which attack he
                              will perform, as well as whether or not he will
                              have the energy necessary to perform it, depend
                              on what the most recent Ninjitsu Ability he has
                              obtained and how many Ninpo (ninja points) he has
                              picked up.  More information in regards to Ryu's
                              Ninjitsu abilities will be covered in the "Items"
                              section.
B BUTTON                    - Jump.  By pressing the B BUTTON, Ryu will jump
                              upwards.  As you'll notice, his Ninjitsu training
                              gives him a very impressive vertical jump, which
                              you will use to traverse the landscapes and
                              levels.  This is use (arguably) more than the
                              Dragon Sword, so you could say it's Ryu's #1
                              feat/ability.
DIRECTIONAL PAD LEFT/RIGHT  - By pressing either of these, Ryu will run to the
                              left/right (corresponding to which direction you
                              press).  Obviously, this is important, since it
                              allows you to move.  You can control Ryu in the
                              midst of a jump (B BUTTON) by pressing LEFT/RIGHT
                              as well, giving him more control in directing
                              where he lands.
B BUTTON (TOWARDS A WALL)   - Wall Climb/Jump.  If Ryu jumps onto a wall, he
                              will automatically grab onto it (using hidden
                              "claws", which Ninjas were known for concealing
                              within their sleeves, to make climbing easier).
                              Once on a wall, Ryu can climb up or down it by
                              pressing the DIRECTIONAL PAD UP/DOWN (depending
                              on which direction he wants to go).  Although Ryu
                              cannot attack his enemies with the Dragon Sword
                              while perched (apparently because it requires too
                              much work to unsheath, strike, and resheath the
                              weapon), he can still use a free hand to perform
                              any Ninjitsu Attacks he (might) have.  While
                              perched, simply pressing the B BUTTON will cause
                              Ryu to use the Ninjitsu Art he currently has
                              equipped (LEFT/RIGHT will direct the attack in
                              their appropriate directions).  To dismount from
                              the wall, simply jump off and direct Ryu to where
                              his landing point shall be, or climb all the way
                              off of the bottom of the wall (where applicable).
B BUTTON (ONTO AN OVERHANG) - Grab and Hang.  Certain ledges and overhangs can
                              be grabbed onto by Ryu by holding UP when jumping
                              to them, allowing him to hang from and move
                              LEFT/RIGHT (depending on the direction pressed on
                              the Directional Pad).  While hanging, much like
                              when perched on a wall, Ryu is relegated to the
                              use of his Ninjitsu arts instead of his sword. In
                              order to dismount, Ryu can simply jump down (Hold
                              DOWN and press the B BUTTON), jump to the left or
                              right (LEFT/RIGHT + B BUTTON) or jump up onto the
                              ledge (only certain ledges can be walked upon;
                              press UP + B BUTTON).
START                       - Pause.  By pressing the START BUTTON, you pause
                              the game.  Go ahead, take a breather from the
                              game!
SELECT                      - Nothing.  What a waste of time!  I wish they'd
                              implemented a "Ninjitsu Art Select" ability, via
                              the Select Button, that would allow you to switch
                              from art to art at will.  Since he does not, Ryu
                              is forced to use the most recent art he has
                              picked up.  I call this "Early Platformer
                              Syndrome" (EPS), since this sort of special-item
                              regime was also followed by Contra, Teenage
                              Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Castlevania.  Wait a
                              second...those are all Konami games!  I blame
                              you, Konami!  You influenced Tecmo to put that
                              idea into their game!  YOU!!!

* - This begs the question of why can he NOT swing his sword while hanging from 
a wall, where he has more stability due to his feet being planted as well?  The 
answer is simple - Ninjas could climb walls through use of their claws, small 
pads attached to their hands, with spikes protruding.  Unfortunately, you 
cannot easily grasp a sword with these claws attached, so rather than drop the 
Weapon, Ryu instead opts to not bother using it.  Apparently, though, Ryu must
use these claws to remain stable when hanging as well, and thus you cannot use 
your sword in those instances either.  Strange, but that's just how the game 
works.

     _______________
_____~C~  The Screen___________________________________________________________
     ===============

Reading the screen is important; if you don't know what you're lookin' at, then 
you might get confused...or something...yeah.  Ok, so I include this just for 
the sake of completion.  Hey man, it's not like this is off-topic or anything, 
eh?

________________________________________________
| [         1         ] [      2     ] [  3  ] |
| [       4      ] [5 ] [          6         ] |
| [   7   /   8  ] [  ] [          9         ] |
|                                              |
|                                              | 
|                                              |
|                                              |
|                                              |
|                                              |
|                                              |
|           That's Ryu!                        |
|                  |                           |
|      O   /    <--|                           |
|     \|__/                                    |
|      |                                       |
|     / \                                      |
¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯
1)  Ryu's Score.
2)  The current stage, listed by stage number (1, 2, 3) followed by section
    number (1A, 1B, etc).  This'll become important when you get to the  
    walkthrough.
3)  Number of lives remaining.
4)  Time left in the stage.  These aren't counted in minutes, but rather a
    count of seconds left.
5)  Current Ninjitsu Art selected.  Remember, Ryu starts off with the default
    Windmill Star.
6)  Ryu's remaining health.  This is something you'll probably be monitoring
    heavily throughout the game, as it reflects just how many hits Ryu can take
    before he succumbs to icy death.  Each hit he sustains takes off a certain
    number of bars from the total, replacing them with an '0'.  When they run
    out, Ryu drops dead.  Try to avoid that, eh?  Ryu has 16 bars of health,
    while most of the enemies (not counting bosses) take a single swipe to kill
    them.  Unfortunately, enemies can take off anywhere from 1 to 4 bars per
    hit, so you're going to be in for a rough ride if you get hit more than 3-4 
    times.
7)  Ninpo Remaining.  The number on the left side of the slash is just how many
    Ninpo points you have left to use Ninjitsu abilities with.
8)  Maxiumum Ninpo.  The number on the right side of the slash is the total
    amount of Ninpo that Ryu can have.  This is increased by nabbing Ninpo
    Scrolls.
9)  Bosses' remaining health.  This only matters when you get to a boss, as it
    is just how much life they have remaining.  Unfortunately, Ryu's sword and
    Ninjitsu arts only do 1 point of damage per hit, so you're going to have to
    play the hit-and-run game a lot.  Ryu simply can't tank like his opponents
    can, so going toe-to-toe is pretty much ALWAYS a mistake.

       __________________
_______~D~  Items/Weapons______________________________________________________
       ==================

One of the most integral factors of the game are power-ups, 1-Ups, and points 
that Ryu can pick up throughout each stage.  However, the most important series 
of items he can lay his hands on are the Ninjitsu abilities, since they give 
Ryu an added style of attack with which to destroy his enemies.  Each one can 
be found by slashing open a floating orb (or "Item-Holding Container") that 
particular stage contains, and is picked up by simply walking over it (or 
jumping through it, or whatever - you simply have to come in contact with it).  
These orbs will flash what their contents are, allowing you to find out what 
you'll be slashing at before you...uh...slash at it.  Let's discuss the items 
now.

                               ---Ninjitsu---

The various Ninjitsu Abilities that Ryu can attack with all take a different 
amount of Ninpo to use, and have different damage levels and properties all 
their own.  Unfortunately, you can only carry one Ninjitsu Ability at a time, 
so make good use of the one you have, and make sure you don't accidently pick 
up on you don't want!

By the way...yes, I do use bad ASCII art to display all of the various items 
and Ninjitsu Arts.  Hey, I never use ASCII art; besides, isn't it easier to 
look at what eat item looks like rather than reading a description and hoping 
that it looks (on the screen) how you imagined it?  Oh yeah, and if you have 
trouble seeing what each drawing is, try squinting - it works for me!

 .=- ,====xxxx+=,       WINDMILL SHURIKEN - 10 Ninpo
### #  .#   .. x##   This more powerful version of the Shuriken is larger and
#   #--  #       #;  more damaging, although it costs more to use it.  When
#   #,;== =######+   Ryu throws the Windmill Shuriken, it will travel
#   #-,-##+..,;   =  horizontally across the screen (in a straight line)
#  #  ++  -x-+ .##,  before halting in mid-air and returning on its original
##- +-++  -x. X, #.  path.  It's applications are a little different than the
.  -;..=##+,-#   #.  Shuriken, since you'll have to get in a little closer if
-######+ ;--.#   #.  you want to hit enemies in front of you; however, if you
#       #  -;#   #,  jump over the Shuriken as it returns, it will pass behind
##X      #,  # +##.  Ryu, then turn around and boomerang back towards him
 .+xXXXX+++=. -=;    again.  By keeping up a consistent jumping pattern, you
                     can have a veritable Windmill Shield that flits about
                     your Ninja, protecting him on a horizontal axis.

 .=+xxx+==++xx+=,       ART OF FIRE WHEEL - 8 Ninpo
### ..  ==   . x##   A more potent Ninjitsu magic than the Shurikens, you'll
#      =##+      #,  most likely find yourself using this against bosses due
#   # -#..X+ #   #.  to its power and range.  Ryu throws his hand outward,
#  ; +#=  ,## .  #.  sending several bursts of flame at a diagonal-upward
#   #X,     X#,  #.  level.  These bursts expand, giving excellent anti-air
#   x-      =x   #.  coverage and doling out a good bit of damage (each burst
#=. #X.     x#  -#.  hits an enemy, meaning several bursts can do a LOT of
#    -      =    #.  damage).  Its Ninpo cost makes it a tad costly, but if
#    xX,  .x#    #,  you save up your points you should be able to tackle most
-,#X # ,#xX#= #.+#+  any problem with a little flame (several little flames,
X===++=----==++==#=  actually).

 .=++===+xxx==-=,       ART OF FIRE DRAGON BALL - 8 Ninpo
###  X#+  .. # -##   The antithesis of the Art of Fire Wheel, the Art of Fire
#       x    x#, #,  Dragon Ball provides a fiery offense at a downward angle.
#  ,x#-   =###   #.  Unfortunately, most enemies will be at either a level
#;+#  ;## -,     #.  field with Ryu or above him - because of this, his
##x  #+;x;x##   ,#.  opportunities to use AoFDB are quite limited.  In order
#-   ###=x-=#  -##.  to feasibly use it in most situations, Ryu will have to
#     .= x#=  #X;#.  jump and fire off a salvo...which is usually not a wise
#   #XXx   .#=-  #.  maneuver, given the fact that he has to then concentrate
#  #x    =       #,  on jumping, connecting with the Ninjitsu attack, then
##+ #     -#X  x##.  landing safely so that he isn't in harms' way.  I'll
 .===+xXXx+=+xx+;    stick with the Art of Fire Wheel, thank you.

 .=+xxx+--=xxx+=,       INVINCIBLE FIRE WHEEL - 20 Ninpo
###     +#     x##   Hoo boy...lemme tell ya about the Invincible Fire Wheel
#   ###+ #++#+   #,  Ninjitsu attack.  For a fairly tidy sum of Ninpo, you can
#  #,   # ,; =#= #.  have Ryu completely inscorled in flames, making him
# .#  ,=# ,+x  .##.  invincible for a short period of time.  That's right, you
#X, ,##X    #-;=+#.  can run through enemies and dispatch them simply by
#xx+#        ##  #.  having this Ninjitsu art activated (although you can
#  ##  x###X . .X#.  still die by falling down pits or onto spikes).  If you
#   # .+      #x #.  have this art, keep it for as long as possible so you can
#     ;#-   #=   #,  save it for those trouble spots!
###     #X#-   +##.
  .+xXXX+=-=+xXx+;

     .  ....  .          VACUUM WAVE ART - 10 Ninpo
    +. ;x..+=  +.     Another oddity of an art, Vacuum Wave has Ryu shoot out 2
  ==  #= -- ,#  ;x    crescent blades, above and beneath him, that weave up and
 #   # .#==X- #,  #   down before disappearing.  Unfortunately, these provide
  -x# .;.   ;. X#=    absolutely NO horizontal coverage, meaning you'll have to
# .##          ##- #  be directly above-below your enemies to use it.  Also, if
=#, ,+###  ###x;  #+  you're directly above/below an enemy, you're ill-equipped
  -x. .,=##+,, .x+    to protect yourself if the attack misses or fails to kill
 #  -#  -;,-  #=  #   them; thus, it's not all that good in terms of defense,
  =-  #- == .#  ,x    either.  This attack it so situation-oriented for its own
    x  -#  x+  +,     good, and I highly suggest you not bother picking it up.
     ,.  --. .,

                                ---Items---

Although not quite as important as the Ninjitsu abilities, Ryu can collect 
items to aid him in his quest.  Some give him more Ninpo, some increase his 
Ninpo Capacity, some restore health, some simply give points (good enough for 
the gaining of extra lives), and some are 1-Ups.  Let's look at each item, eh?

   -----------;,+-       BLUE NINPO
###x#########X#xx#-  These handy little items are your primary source of
#x;           .#x #  Ninpo, given the fact that they are quite abundant
#= ;### ### -# #X #  throughout each stage.  By picking one up, you (re)gain
#+.;      # -# #X #  10 Ninpo, not exceeding your maximum (your max starts out
#+,-;-;##x ##X #X #  at 40, and can increase later on).  Since each art takes
#+, ##.#;.=#+ x#x #  a different amount of Ninpo, it's good to have as much on
#+  X#x       ##x #  hand as possible.  However, if you don't need any, don't
#=.##x ####### xx #  bother going after one if it means risking your life.
###  .,..... ,##= #  These are bluish in color, with white writing on them.
=+++xxxxxxxxx+=.-x#  You'll have to excuse my rather shoddy ASCII art
 ,x+++++++++++=X###  representation of it.

   -;---------;,=,       ORANGE NINPO
 ###+x#######x+#=+#,  Even handier (and rarer) than the Blue Ninpo, Orange
,#=;.         ,,x= #  Ninpo icons fully restore your Ninpo count to its max.
.X-.-### x## .# ++ x  Of course, these are going to be harder to come across,
.X=,-,     # .# x+ x  but in later levels where you depend on Ninjitsu
.X=;=   #X- ##x ++ x  Abilities more and have a higher Ninpo total, finding one
.X=- #X #;,;#= ++= x  of these can be VERY beneficial.  Don't forget, though,
.X=. =x-       #x= x  that the folks who make the levels for this game realize
.x-;x#+;######x.== x  how useful Orange Ninpo is, and will often put them in
-+xX..,,,,,,,,,X+- +  troublesome sports where you're likely to be ambushed or
 -=============-..,X  killed by going after it.  Use judgement before you go
# .=------------=X##  after one, ok?

      X++++++-.         HEALTH BOTTLE
     +=------=+.      Oh yeah, this thing is nice.  Ryu will probably take a 
      ,++++++;        licking throughout the game, which is where this comes 
        .,,.          into play - pick it up and you'll restore a good portion 
      ,x=--=x;        of Ryu's life (10 bars).  For some odd reason, these seem 
      ,x=--=x;        to appear in places where you not only need the life, but 
      ,x-..;x;        can easily access them (as opposed to 1-Ups or Orange 
######+.=xx+.=######  Ninpo).  It's almost like the programmers began to 
#+-xx#X+-,,;+X#xx-=#  realize how difficult their game was, and therefore 
,=x##x+-++++-+xX#x+,  strategically placed these bottles to make the journey a 
-x#x+,;------;,+x#x-  little easier.
+xx=-..,,,,,,,.--xx+
#xx---;......,---xx#
#Xx+++=------=+++xx#
###x+;-++++++=;+x###
####X++x=;;-x++XX###

,      ,x=+X=           DRAGON SWORD UPGRADE
#-+==###+= ;==#x      Ah, another wonderful addition to Ryu's arsenal, this one 
#x-+###XX#..-X#=XX    new to the Ninja Gaiden series.  By picking up the Dragon 
 X#+   .#x,,-+ .,-#   Sword Upgrade, Ryu's sword length is increased, giving 
##     =x,,..==;,,=X  him a much needed range boost.  Unfortunately, these are
+x. ;x   +-+xX#;.;#+  VERY rare, almost as rare as Ninpo Scrolls.  However, 
xXX####=  .X#x#,.;Xx  don't let that get you down - by nabbing one of these,
.#++xXx=;.  x#x,=X#.  you are pretty well guaranteed an easier time through the
 ##XX, ,x#x   =-x##   remainder of the stage.  Extra range on your base attack
  ;x. +xxx,x=   -#    is a definite plus, believe me.  To top it all off, you
 #x-x##Xxxx=--#    #  even get to hit enemies that are slightly above and
       ,x++xx=,       below your normal range, meaning you no longer have to 
                      crouch to catch pesky, smaller enemies - you can slash
                      at them from a further distance without the trouble of
                      getting down on your knees!  Yay!

 #==+++=-;;;;-=+=;      ONE UPS
 ###,. +######.,###.  The quintessential item...One Ups are small items that
.#.  ##+.....;#   #,  are embroidered with Ryu's head, increasing his total
 # ,#x;..;--;;.#+ #.  count of remaining lives by 1.  This means more mayhem
 #.,#-##+..... =. #.  from the rogue Ninja, and more chances for you to get 
 #. ;##+=#####X#; #.  through the blasted game, so grabbing them IS in your 
 #,   ==. ##X#X#= #.  best interests.  However, 1-ups are often placed in very
 #,  ###X .  . =; #.  troublesome places, meaning you have to practically risk
 #  +#X##X;;=+,   #.  your neck just to get one.  Logically, it doesn't make 
 #####.=X.#=..##- #.  much sense to die while gaining an extra life, now does
 =;. x++-  =##X.+#+-  it?
 #x++++..=xx+-..===x

    NINPO SCROLL (Picture not available)
  Ok, so I don't have a picture of these...big deal, eh?  Arguably some of the 
most important things you can get in the game (and the most difficult to 
locate), the Ninpo Scrolls raise the total amount of Ninpo Points you can have.  
These increments come 10-per-scroll, so finding them can become extremely 
beneficiary to your cause.  After all, having more points to use special 
attacks with can be VERY helpful, yes?

============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================
     --------------------------IV:  Walkthrough--------------------------
============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================

Oh boy, the walkthrough!  This should be MAD fun, yo!  For each stage, I'll 
give a brief plot summary, followed by if there is a Ninpo Scroll to be found 
(and, if so, what stage section it's found in) and the name of the boss.

One final note - I use the term "Flag" quite a bit throughout this guide.  If 
you're not familiar with what I mean by it, then go visit Section VI-A.

 _______________________
_~A~  Act 1: The Bio-Lab_______________________________________________________
 =======================

Plot:    Ryu has traced Irene's work to this factory.  Upon entering, he is 
         attacked by a variety of strange robots and monsters, forcing him to 
         take action.  He drops into the factory, ready to do battle with all
         that dare face him...and then-some.
Scroll:  None
Boss:    Mantis Warrior

Ok, so this stage is just a warm-up for things to come.  You can tell because 
it's short, it's easy, and there are items a-plenty that are easy to grab.  
Experiment with each item, getting a feel for how they work, and learn to 
maneuver around each enemy (as well as simply slashing through them).  Get used 
to the controls, 'cause you are going to need to do so.  Finish the 3 short 
sections and you'll be treated to an easy boss fight.  Sound good?  No?  Well, 
though - that's how the game goes.

~~~~~Stage 1-1A~~~~~

Instead of a doing a step-by-step walkthough, I will instead give you 
"bullets" of information per each area.  If it's pertinent to mention, then 
I'll do so; in later stage, I can pretty well guarantee that it'll get hectic 
enough for me to (almost) constantly give point after point, but I'll try to 
avoid placing information in-tandem as such.

°°°Stop before the end of the bar with the Spider Drone on top (and the Fire 
Dragon Ball above), as a Running Alien is headed your way.  Jumping blindly 
will send you right into him, so halt, allow him to come to you, and slash him 
before he can harm you.  Removing him this way saves you precious health, so 
don't risk it.

°°°Following cannister with the Orange Ninpo above it are 2 items that I highly 
suggest you pick up and try to hold onto for most of the remainder of the 
level: The Art of Fire Wheel ability, and a Dragon Sword Upgrade.  Hey man, 
nothin' beats being able to run through your enemies without fear of being 
hurt, and having that much more range certainly ain't bad (even if this IS a 
"basic" level).

°°°By the 2nd bar of this area, the screen will probably be getting crowded 
with enemies.  I suggest you drop down beneath the bar, dispatching the Red 
Ninjas on either side (they usually have a break between them), then continuing 
on without bothering the enemies above.  You don't have to jump up to their 
level (yet), so it's no worry.  

°°°There's another Running Alien coming up, just after this bar on top of the 
taller cannister.  Run up next to the shorter cannister to initiate his 
appearance, then slash him or avoid 'em altogether.  As soon as you jump on top 
of the taller cannister, a White Wave-Floater will appear; make sure you stop 
and slash 'em instead of blindly running (this WILL get you nicked, unless you 
stop).

°°°Falling down between the ninjas in between the cannister and the wall, 
another Runner will enter from the Left side in an attempt to catch up.  Wait 
for 'em to jump overhead, then dice him...or ignore 'em, climb the wall, and 
run off the right screen to the next area.  It's your choice.

~~~~~Stage 1-1B~~~~~

°°°This is a vertical stage, meaning most of the work is travelling upwards.  
Unfortunately, this means that you'll be clinging to walls quite a bit, so if 
you want to attack your opponents without using any precious Ninpo, you'll have 
to dismount the wall and attack.  Make sure you remember, especially if you're 
running low on points.

°°°There really aren't any specific things to mention here; there are a couple 
of White Wave-Floaters, but they appear on the opposite side of the screen, 
well before you reach them.  As such, you should be able to dispatch them 
before they can reach you.

°°°Roughly halfway up, you'll encounter a vertical climb to the left, whereupon 
the top of the cannister is a Spider Drone and a Red Ninja.  If you don't want 
to waste any Ninpo, just climb all the way up (make sure neither are near the 
edge, so you don't get hit), then leap to the wall on the Right before bounding 
(and slashing) back left.

°°°Once again, scale to the top and exit right off of the screen.

~~~~~Stage 1-1C~~~~~

°°°Very, very short section, although rushing through it can cost you a few hit 
points (if you're not careful).  Move forward until the Running Alien and White 
Wave-Floater appear; hack through them in whatever order you choose, so long as 
you're not running into either.  Walking further along the edge will cause 
another Running Alien to enter from the left, so dispatch him as well.  Drop to 
the ground where a trio of Red Ninjas await, along with their pet spider-drone.  
Await their demise, that is!  2 more Blue Ninpo and a Fire Dragon Ball are to 
be had, followed by the exit stage right to fight the boss, Mantis Warrior (see 
the Bosses Section for more info).

   ________________________
___~B~  Act 2: Desert/Caves____________________________________________________
   ========================

Plot:    A mysterious figure has told Ryu that he knows about Irene, and that 
         he is perfectly willing to inform Ryu of all he knows...if he goes to
         Castle Rock Fortress.  Apparently, getting there requires that Ryu
         travel to the middle of a desert and then into a deep cavern system,
         because that's where this stage takes place.
Scroll:  Yes (2-2C, along the left wall)
Boss:    Night Diver

If you thought the first stage was a breeze, then you've been successfully 
deceived as to the nature of this game.  The following stages, starting with 
Stage 2 (this one), are NOT easy by ANY stretch of the imagination.  I hope you 
don't fret too much...this isn't an easy game, nor should you believe it to be.  

This stage starts off as a desert locale, with irritating enemies above and the 
sand below you seeking to drag you underneath.  Following this, you enter a 
series of caves that are dangerously close to a flow of lava - fall in and 
you're toast!  Finally, you have to deal with another mechanical being, this 
one known as the Night Diver.  Joy.

~~~~~Stage 2-1A~~~~~

°°°Welcome to the desert.  The first thing you'll notice onscreen (at least, 
it's the first thing I noticed) is that there is a patch of ground in front of 
you that appears to be scrolling downward.  This is actually quicksand, and is 
something you'll want to avoid standing in for too long.  It impedes your 
movement, slowing you down, and if you are dragged too far down then you'll 
automatically die (as if you hit spikes or something).  Don't that happen; by 
jumping, you leap out of the quicksand and return to the top of the much.  Play 
it safe!

°°°The 2nd quicksand mess has a small, round creature standing on top of the 
quicksand.  These guys will quickly become an irritation to you, assuming you 
do not wish to use a Windmill Shuriken to drop 'em.  When you move close 
enough, it will start leaping right and left, which is difficult to avoid since 
the quicksand makes movement more difficult.  Furthermore, it's a smaller 
creature (which I have playfully dubbed the "Ball Bounder"), so hitting it with 
your sword can be a challenge, too.  My suggestion?  Go ahead and use your 
Windmill Shuriken, then jump over it and allow it to take out the Running Alien 
(Version 2) behind you...and the next one to appear in front of you...and the 
next...see, frequent jumping can be helpful!  

However, if you don't want to use any Ninpo, then I suggest timing your jump so 
that you end up following the Ball Bounder as it bounds to the right, slashing 
it at the apex of your jump (which, coincedentally, is its apex as well).

°°°Shortly before the next quicksand spot, you'll come across an orb containing 
the Art of Fire Wheel.  This is what we like to call "foreshadowing", kiddies - 
you'll probably have to deal with some airborne enemies when you see this (or 
lower-enemies when you find a Fire Dragon, or a bunch of everything if you find 
an Invincible Wheel).  In the next quicksand pit, you'll find 2 more Ball 
Bounders, shortly joined by 2 Sky Drones above you.  If you wish to time it, 
move far enough over for the Drones to drop down, then get the Ball Bounder to 
jump and nail 'em all with a Fire Wheel.

°°°You'll soon come across another quicksand pit, this one with 2 more Ball 
Bounders.  Slice 'em to ribbons and move further forward, where a Running Alien 
(ver. 2) will appear from the right.  Most people seem to think that they can 
simply outrun him, and this is where you're wrong - stop and dice him before 
continuing, so that you don't end up with far, far more on your hands than 
necessary.  Moving forward again, you'll see another Bounder and a Blue Ninpo 
above him - scroll the screen to flag the 2 Sky Drones to drop in, then Fire 
Wheel the Bounder, Ninpo, and 1 of the drones (you can slash the left one with 
your sword).  Further down, you'll find another bounder, quickly joined by a 
flying Insect.  Remember the eagles from Ninja Gaiden I, the ones that would 
quickly drive you nuts with their homing flight pattern?  Well, that's what 
these guys are.  Don't give it a chance, just Fire Wheel him before he gets 
close.

If you didn't do all this, then you have 2-3 Bounders, 2 Sky Drones, 1 insect, 
and a Running Alien all crowding you.  The insect makes it difficult to remove 
anything else, since he effectively lands on you and stays on you...so a little 
patience saves the day, eh?

°°°Once you exit the last sandpit, just keep running to the right.  There will 
be a Running Alien that jumps in, but he'll soar overhead and you'll be free to 
continue on to the next stage.

~~~~~Stage 2-2A~~~~~

Welcome to the caves!  You're probably not going to like them...see, there are 
quite a few areas where the floor has been eaten away by lava, making a 
volatile ground area to deal with; furthermore, the ceiling is covered in 
stalactites (not stalagmites; those start at the ground and work up), and 
touching these takes off a whopping 6 bars of life!  No touchie!

°°°Running to the right, you'll see a Wave-Floater (brown) appear on the right.  
Ignoring it, running leap onto the bar above the lava and slash the stationary 
turret as soon as it opens up its doors (this should scroll the screen fast 
enough to elude the Wave-Floater).  If you need the Art of Fire Wheel, drop 
down to hang from the bar, and wait for the soldier to move far enough to the 
left to give enough room to drop down and hack at him.  Remember, you cannot 
hang-climb beneath the turret, as you'll still take damage from touching it.

°°°You see the guy on the platform to the right of the Bar, yes?  Well, simply 
wait until he moves far enough right so you can jump over and slash him.  
Immediately crouch and get ready to slice the Spiney-Ball as it rolls towards 
you, and then exit this area through the door to the right.

~~~~~Stage 2-2B~~~~~

°°°Here's a good ol' fashioned vertical stage, where you start at the top and 
work down.  Not too bad, as you'll often find yourself moving fast enough 
(vertically) to elude a variety of enemies.  However, don't think you can 
outrun everything, since you might just be rushing into harm's way.  That's how 
this game works, you know.

°°°After your first step dropping down, you'll see a soldier with a Sword 
Upgrade above him.  For fun, take out the soldier and nab the upgrade rather 
quickly, then hang out there.  You'll see a Spiney-Ball that was following you, 
only to roll right off the bottom of the screen (you hadn't scrolled far enough 
for the next platform to appear; thus, you eluded it).

°°°Further down are 2 blobs on the ground, which - when given enough time - 
will shoot little projectiles in 3 directions (left, right, and up).  When you 
near them, they magically sprout up and turn into Spiney Balls...but enough of 
this, just run up and hack them to pieces.  You'll also see 2 Spiney Balls drop 
in above you and start rolling down to your level; you can either outrun them 
and cause the screen-scroll to delete them, or stop and hack 'em up.  Whatever, 
man.

°°°This bottom section has another little blob, ready to shoot you or turn into 
a ball and ram you.  I would suggest using a Fire Dragon Ball to shoot 'em 
down, so you don't have to put yourself in risk of taking damage.  Also, there 
is a Wave Floater (brown) here...but usually, your rapid descent from above 
causes him to fall off the screen.  For more information as to why this 
happens, check out Section VI-A of this guide.

~~~~~Stage 2-2C~~~~~

It's the infamous lava-rising section!  Have fun outrunning (and out-jumping) 
your doom, Ryu!

°°°Really, aside from a few specific sections of this stage, it's rather self 
explanitory - don't rush upwards, since enemies appear a half-second later than 
their platforms do.  Thus, if you jump all the way up to a platform, you might 
still be in danger of an enemy appearing right on top of you.  Haste is good, 
but the lava is at the BOTTOM of the screen.  Don't hurt yourself while trying 
to avoid death, eh?

°°°Ninpo Scroll alert!  Roughly halfway through this area, you'll find a long 
platform extending into the left wall, with an opening along the right wall.  
This platform contains 3 soldiers and a small blob, but more importantly...it 
has a Ninpo Scroll above it.  Dispatch the solders and blob, wait for the 
screen to scroll, and nab that scroll!  Yay, now you can have 50 maximum Ninpo!

°°°Just above this platform (with the Ninpo Scroll) is a bar.  Jump up onto the 
bar, then wait for the screen to scroll up enough for the soldier to appear on 
the platform above.  See, rushing onward can get you killed if you don't wait a 
bit first!

°°°Above this soldier, you'll see to platforms on the left and right.  Wait for 
the soldier to appear on the right (and the turret on the left), then slash the 
soldier and grab the 1-Up above him.  Now, dealing with the turret is fairly 
simple - you can leap from 1 platform to the other, so jump the gap and any 
bullets it might have fired (in volleys of 2), slashing as you land to take 
care of it.  If your timing is right, you can even vault the Spiney-Ball that 
drops in, successfully avoiding it as well.

°°°Above this turret is another turret, followed by a platform above it and a 
platform left and up from this one (it has a Windmill Shuriken above it).  
Immediately jump to this platform, as the next platform to appear has a soldier 
on it...and if you don't make the jump before he appears, then you'll have to 
contend with the soldier preventing you from jumping easily.  You can use a 
Fire Wheel to take care of him, but quickness (in this instance) can safe you 
the trouble.  Also, if you want the Fire Wheel to use against the boss, you'd 
better not pick up the Windmill Star...it's the last Art to be found in this 
stage!

~~~~~Stage 2-2D~~~~~

°°°You'll notice that there are lava pits that you can jump over.  Yeah, you 
can just tell that something bad is going to happen, so jump.  Upon landing, a 
ball of lava flies up and out of the crevasse, splitting into 4 balls that fall 
on either side of the opening.  I would suggest trying to position yourself 
between the last two and crouching (while slashing the soldier in front of 
you).  By making yourself a smaller target, this makes it harder to hit you.  
Makes sense, yes?

°°°Following this is a platform with another soldier on it.  Inch foward until 
you can slice the soldier across the way with your Upgraded Sword (you DO have 
the upgraded sword, don't you?), then turn and slash the Spikey Ball that 
dropped in behind you.  Now, when you jump across to the platform, you'll be 
greated by another Lava Ball (crouch to avoid it again).  Now, move to the 
other side of the platform, stepping to the very edge, and duck again...this 
time the Lava Ball appears in front of you, but by moving all the way forward, 
hanging 1 foot off of the platform and crouching, you'll avoid it.  From here, 
jump-slash the Soldier and Spikey Ball, and go fight a boss!

     ________________________
_____~C~  Act 3: Jungle/Caves__________________________________________________
     ========================

Plot:    Upon finishing off the Night Diver, a video screen alights behind Ryu,
         showing the evil countenance of Foster, an old enemy of Ryu's.  He is
         then informed that no one has ever gotten out of this area alive, and
         he hopes that the next time they meet, Ryu is alive to see it.  He
         then fades out, leaving Ryu with no choice but to try and exit this
         heinous area and work his way towards Castle Rock's outer perimeter.
Scroll:  Yes (3-2C, along the left wall)
Boss:    Great Koganei

Apparently, the caves that Ryu entered in Act 2 lead to a Jungle, 'cause that 
is where Ryu starts off this Act.  He travels above a rather dangerous river, 
with oversized Piranha seeking to knock him into the water by hefty jumps into 
the air.  If you survive this section, you then enter another cave, this one 
full of trickling water and strange blobs that harm you simply by being there.  
Get through all this and you'll face off against another Mechanical Beast, this 
one named the "Great Koganei."

~~~~~Stage 3-1A~~~~~

Welcome to the Jungle, baby!  You're gonna die!!!  (End bad Guns 'n Roses joke)

You will quickly hate this level, mostly because of the Piranha.  They simply 
MUST have a nibble of that Cool Ninja they see, and go to such lengths to 
ensure a bite that they'll even leap out of the river once close enough.  
Sometimes they fly high enough to run underneath, sometimes they don't...so 
it's usually in your best interest to step back, let them fall, and slash 'em.

°°°Following the first bar you see is a platform with a ninja and a couple of 
items.  This is also your first introduction to the Piranha of the level, and 
it's on fairly easy terms.  As I said above, step back and hack at 'em after he 
jumps, or let him descend and continue on however you like.

°°°After this first encounter, you'll see a rise/fall lift.  Jumping onto it 
causes a Piranha to appear behind you, heading right-to-left.  Remember in the 
first part of Stage 2, where you were clearly being pressured by the Running 
Alien that appeared behind you?  Well, this is just the same, so turn around 
and leap back to the previous platform so you can dice the Piranha safely 
before continuing on.  Moving far enough forward on the first rise/fall lift 
causes brings the 2nd one onscreen, as well as a reddish Wave-Floater.  It's 
pattern of flight tends to make it troublesome to slash from the 2nd Lift, so 
stick to the first and wait until it's in range to destroy it (either that or 
use a Ninja Art to vanquish it).

°°°When you come across a red Ninja next to a Vacuum Wave art, kill the ninja 
and grab the art (don't do it the other way around...that could be hazardous to 
your health).  The bar next to it has a spider drone on top (kill it), as well 
as one hanging from beneath, and a platform below it has a Ninja and an Orange 
Ninpo.  Walk to the middle, above the platform, and wait for all 3 enemies to 
line up.  Go ahead and use the Vacuum attack, since you'll immediately be 
replenishing your Ninpo.  Yay!

°°°Here's a little trap that too many people fall for - 2 diagonally-moving 
lifts, with a 1-Up in the middle and a Piranha closing in.  You want the 1-up, 
but the Piranha tends to get you if you try for it...and so, many people think 
of the 1-up as a trap meant to kill them from the attempt.  This is not true, 
and you don't need to resort to Ninjitsu to acquire it, either.  What you do is 
simple - wait until the Lift is at is highest, then jump onto it.  Now, 
continue running, falling off of the left side of the lift.  That's right, 
you're going to fall off...momentarily.

Immediately after you fall, hold right to force Ryu to grab onto the underside 
of the lift (you can't hold down and press Jump to cling to the otherside, 
since it is headed downward).  The first Piranha - the one that has claimed 
many, many lives from many players through countless plays - will soar 
overhead, jumping too high to catch you.  Once he's out of the way, jump back 
up to the lift, leap across, and slash the 1-up as you land on the other lift.

°°°Lift #2 has its own strategy, as another Piranha seeks vengance for you 
escaping their little trap.  Cling to the bottom of this platform (or use 
Ninjitsu, if you so choose, since you already have the 1-up and there is no 
danger of shooting it down anymore) and wait for it to soar overhead, then jump 
to the bar and slash the Spider Drone before it gets close enough to knock you 
into the river.  That's no fun, believe me.

Oh...and I've also heard that jumping prior to the Piranha's leap causes it to 
jump super-high, making it whiff you...however, this just isn't consistent 
enough for my tastes.  Plus, the under-over-under lift switches just looks 
flashier.

°°°There are a series of platform jumps just before the door, with a couple of 
Piranha seeking one last attack at you.  Thankfully, though, you can backtrack 
a bit to handle them in a safer environment, then continue safely to the door.  
If you played this area safely, you can get through it without any loss of life 
and still have a good 200 seconds left on the clock!

~~~~~Stage 3-2A~~~~~

Welcome to the caves, where the background is...uh...weird, to say the least.  
However, what should really be troubling you is the number of enemies that will 
be invading your "personal space" in the hopes of destroying you in the process 
(or at least knocking you into a pit).  Also, the water flow in this area moves 
you in 1 direction of the other, making movement in the correlating direction 
faster and the opposite direction slower.  Keep that in mind, since you'll be 
facing tight quarters and small enemies that require precise aim.

°°°This platform in the middle is the beginning of the water trickle, and drops 
off the left and right sides.  I would suggest dropping down the right side, 
where you will have more room to take care of the Ninja beneath and enough time 
to get rid of the Spineys that follow you.

°°°The next drop-down is actually onto a Hang-Bar, with 2 more Spineys tracking 
you.  Kill the Ninja here, wait to dispatch the Spineys, then drop down past 
the bar (don't bother hanging, you'll just get hit by the blob).  You'll land 
on another bar, with a pulsating red mass on top of it.  Slash the mass, since 
these things shoot projectiles that roll across the ground, then jump off the 
right side.  Heading right allows you to avoid the 2 blobs beneath this bar, as 
well as the Ninja on the left-hand side (which often ends up directly below 
you).

°°°Below this bar, you'll land between 2 more pulsating masses.  Hack the one 
on the left, drop down, and slash the 2 on the following platform while heading 
right.  After this is a bit of a drop down (it allows you to elude the Spineys 
that were following you), where - at the bottom - you'll encounter 2 jumping 
Mantis-like creatures and another Spiney.  Dispatch all and exit stage Left 
through the door.

~~~~~Stage 3-2B~~~~~

°°°Running to the left, you'll immediately see a bar with a blob on the 
underside and a soldier on top, as well a bar beneath it with another soldier 
guarding a Fire Dragon Art.  Behind you comes a Running Alien, so jump up to 
the bar, dispatch the Soldier, then wait for the Alien to run below you.  He 
jumps at the end of the platform onto the lower bar, so make sure you aren't in 
his way when he does.  It's important to make sure he passes and you don't have 
that pressure from behind, trust me.

°°°Past this bar is an Orange Ninpo, floating above a small platform.  Nab this 
if you wish; I prefer to toss out a Fire Dragon to clear out the Soldiers on 
the platform below it, as well as shoot down the Fire Wheel orb.  Hey, it's 
free Ninpo, so why not?  On this lower platform, once you pass the midway point 
of it (where the water trickle changes sides) you'll see another bar with a 
soldier on top of it, and a Running Alien will enter from the each side of the 
screen.  If you're close enough to the left side of the platform, the one on 
the right will soar right over you...the on from the Right, however, should be 
killed so he's not pushing you into anything.

°°°Jump onto the bar left of the platform you were just on, and inch along 
until the Insect appears on the right (and another Running Alien from the 
left).  The Insect will get to you first, so kill him, the kill the Alien and 
move further left on the bar.  Yet another Running Alien will appear on the 
platform to the left; you can either jump over him or wait for him to jump up 
and slice 'em in two.

°°°Another insect appears when you cross the midway point of the following 
platform (the one with the Invincible Fire Art above it).  Grab the Invincible 
Art after killing it, the run to the right and initiate the Art once you land 
on the next bar.  You're going to find a difficult jump here, so you don't even 
want to mess around with whatever's in front of you.  An insect will appear 
from below, and the small ledge on the far Left (in front of the door) has a 
soldier guarding it...so you either Invincible your way through them, or you 
wait on the Insect, kill it, then wait on the soldier, jump over, kill him, and 
proceed through.  Hey, patience is one thing, but I also want to have enough 
time to beat the boss!

~~~~~Stage 3-2C~~~~~

°°°After a brief climb up, you'll find a bar that has Goo stuck on the bottom 
of it, a Pulsating Mass on top of it, and 2 Spider Drones beneath it.  My 
suggestion is to jump over to the platform, kill the drones, jump up onto the 
far right section of the bar, and immediately climb onto the bar and slice the 
Mass before it can fire off anything.

°°°Health Bottle!  If you need any health restored, grab this!  It's above the 
platform, to the right of the bar with the mass, the goo, and the drones.

°°°Ninpo Scroll alert!  While climbing up the right-side wall, you'll no doubt 
notice the Scroll above the platform on the left. In order to get it, you have 
to climb up to the platform where 2 Pulsating Masses and a Spider Drone are.  
Slash what you can...and remember, there's a bar directly above you, so if you 
have to jump, just remember that you might accidentally grab onto the bar, 
which is where the Goo will probably shoot you for your incompetence.  Either 
keep your distance and destroy the projectiles shot from the Masses (you can 
slash through them), or be careful when jumping.

Anywho, just walk off the left side of this platform, kill the drone, and grab 
the scroll.  Yay, you're up to 60 now!

°°°Near the top of the screen is a bar with goo on bottom and mass on top (by 
now, you should know what I mean by that), with a platform in the upper-left 
where another Mass is.  The door is on the right, where another mass is busily 
pulsating away.  Climb up the wall on the left, jump onto the platform, and 
dice the mass, then turn and jump, dicing the mass in the upper-left.  Finally, 
jump and slash the mass in front of the door, and you're outta there!

~~~~~Stage 3-2D~~~~~

°°°The first thing that truly needs to be mentioned here, as it can be 
difficult (and possibly deadly) is when you hit the series of small platforms 
to leap from.  Jumping onto the 2nd one, you'll quickly see a Running Alien 
leaping onto the next platform.  You don't have to bother with this guy; in 
fact, you can bypass him, ignore the 2 Aliens above, AND elude the Insect 
heading your way from the left.  Just jump right from this platform (# 2, 
slightly lower than the first tiny platform) past the next one onto the 
platform directly below the Fire Wheel Art.  Jumping to the next platform will 
flag another Running Alien, which can be dispatched in midair as you safely 
land on the platform and claim your reward - a Sword Upgrade. 

°°°Great, you got the sword upgrade...now, to survive with it.  After getting 
it, another Insect comes buzzing in from the left, so jump and kill it before 
it can get to you or Fire Wheel it, if you don't mind the Ninpo; there are 2 
blue Ninpo on the platform above, so you'll readily make up for it.  Jumping 
back left, you'll flag an Insect from below when you land on the 2nd lower 
platform (the one you skipped).  Jump over him and continue onto the first tiny 
platform, where another Insect will quickly appear from the left.  The first 
Insect - the one that came from below - will have to doubleback to catch you, 
so you have time to slash the newcomer before dealing with him.

°°°Hopping to the small platform before the larger one (with the water flowing 
off of it, above the Sword Upgrade), you will be accosted by 2 more Running 
Aliens.  Stop on this platform and slash them from a standstill to avoid any 
further damage.  After this, it's a straight shot to the boss(es)!  Hopefully, 
you've survived long enough to take more than 1 or 2 hits...if you can, then 
taking these guys down is much easier, since having that extra room for error 
is very handy.  Defeat the Great Koganei and progress to Act 4, spud!

       _______________________________________
_______~D~  Act 4: Castle Rock Defense Systems_________________________________
       =======================================

Plot:    After defeating the Great Koganei, Ryu's clone shows up and challenges 
         him.  They duel, briefly, with Ryu (the real one) losing the draw.  
         His clone laughs, then tells him that he was the one that killed Irene
         and that he is working for Foster.  He then taunts Ryu and tells him
         to come to Castle Rock Fortress if they want to meet again.  Shortly
         thereafter, Ryu arrives at the fortress defenses, ready to penetrate
         the complex and find answers to his questions.
Scroll:  Yes (Stage 4-1, along one of the metal railways; VERY easy to find)
Boss:    Sandeater

First, you must cross a perilous path across large...uh...drill bits, followed 
by a building positively full of traps.  Man...I shudder to think about if 
there was a more difficult route than this.

~~~~~Stage 4-1A~~~~~

°°°Yeah, there are moving scaffolds here.  For the first set, I suggest 
clinging to the bottom of the first, then dropping onto the 2nd one (it's a 
more accurate landing that if you jumped).  If you want the Fire Wheel, then go 
ahead and get it by jumping onto the moving apparati first.  I don't think 
you'll need it, but hey, whatever you want.

°°°When you reach the scaffolds where 3 Sky Drones drop in, you're probably 
going to wonder how to safely get past this without taking a hit (and possibly 
being knocked to your doom).  Well, there are a few simple ways to pass this 
section.
   1)  Ride the platform, then ride it all the way back to the left (if you're 
       uncomfortable with how close they get, drop underneath the platform and 
       hang from beneath).  Once you're back at the first platform, eliminate 
       them at your leisure.  
   2)  Jump while riding the platform, causing the drones to start their 
       movement at a higher level and giving you more time to jump to the 
       following moving scaffolding.
   3)  4 words - Art of Fire Wheel.
   4)  You can throw out a Windmill Shuriken and then jump over it, causing 
       the star to hit the drones behind you (and then the one in front, if 
       you're timing is right).  From here, simply continue on.

°°°Hey, look - that top Scaffold has a 1-up!  Uh oh, here comes another Insect!  
The trick here is to not fret at all...just stay the ride until you can jump 
onto the railway.  If handled right, you'll land on the very edge (be ready to 
slash the Running Alien headed your way) and the Insect will soar overhead and 
right off the screen.  Now you're safe again, and you're up another life!

°°°Ninpo Scroll Alert!  It's right there, right on that very platform after the 
1-up!  You can't miss it!

°°°The following bit of scaffolding's danger is foreshadowed by the Fire Dragon 
Art on the previous platform.  Sure, the obvious way to dispose of the 2 
Insects from below is to hit them with a shot of Fire Dragon...however, what 
about the guy that doesn't want to use any Ninjitsu abilities?  Well, it's a 
little difficult, but here's how - jump onto the scaffold, riding it just long 
enough to flag the insects.  Now, immediately jump back to the platform, 
landing between the Insects.  Slash the one on the right, since it's the 
closest, then get the left-side one as it tries to halt its path.  Having 
dealth with them, the path is now clear and safe!

From here, it's a pretty clear shot to getting inside the building.

~~~~~Stage 4-2A~~~~~

Interesting defenses this place has...the walls and floors have spikes in them, 
and there are a variety of monsters inhabiting the area.  Well, there's no 
turning back now...and if there was, would you honestly want to ride those 
scaffolds again?

°°°Important fact #1: the spikes in the floor/walls don't kill you, but they do 
take off 6 hit points per touch.  The lesson: do NOT touch those.  Wait until 
they retract into their holes, then dash across to the next non-spike area.  
The first spike area is just past the entryway, so wait until the retract into 
the ground before rushing across to the adjacent wall.  Make sure you climb 
high enough to avoid getting stuck in the behind, will ya?

°°°Ok, so you no doubt saw the Sword Upgrade hanging ominously above the Spike 
Floor you just crossed.  How do you safely grab it?  The trick is in the 
chain...you can hang beneath it, you realize, so go from standing to hanging, 
jump-slash the sword, and try to grab it while reaching for the chain again.  
If you miss it, then the Upgrade (and possibly you) will fall down onto the 
floor, so time it so that even if you miss, you can still grab it without 
worries of being spiked.  You can also walk right up to it and slash it, 
causing it to fall to the ground, then pick it up and book it back to safe 
territory...but that just isn't flashy enough for MY ninja!

°°°In the next spike-covered area, there are 2 large chains dangling from 
above.  Wait until the spikes retract, then drop down, slashing the Ninpo as 
you go, then jump to the next wall and climb up.  The Orb-Eyes shoot bullets in 
3 directions (just like the piles of Goo in stage 3), so be careful about where 
you end up.  The funny thing here is that the Ninja on top of the wall you're 
on will probably be right in your way of climbing up, so you'll have to wait on 
him...and there's an Orb Eye on the next wall on the right, which gives it a 
perfect shot to hit you.  Thankfully, there is a slight pause between when the 
Eye fires and when the Ninja walks back, so you'll have time to get out of the 
way.

°°°Finally, there is an Invincible Fire Wheel above another Spike area.  If you 
wish to get it, simply follow the same instructions that I gave for getting the 
Sword Upgrade.  It's pretty much the same situation, with the differences being 
the item at stake and the lack of a wall on the right (it's a brick walkway 
instead).

~~~~~Stage 4-2B~~~~~

°°°Spikes, small platforms, and a vertical climb...meaning blowing a jump is 
going to be very painful.  Wellsir, if your jumping skills are decent, you 
won't have too many problems during this area.

°°°When you reach the first brownish Shield-and-Gunman, there will be a purple-
flying thing entering from the right.  You can actually ignore this guy, 
slashing through the gunman and continuing upwards (to effectively run the 
Purple Flyer offscreen).  Above this guy is another one on the right, with a 
chain above his head...you can ignore him and jump straight to the chain, 
maneuvering around the Spider Drone atop before continuing.

°°°Ok, now THIS Purple Flyer you have to deal with.  These things usually start 
out slow, stopping after a bit to fire off 4 bullets in each diagonal...but if 
you move quickly to their horizontal line of movement, they'll suddenly speed 
up and ram you (even if you're behind them, they'll throw it into reverse and 
catch you anyways).  Thus, be forewarned - when you jump to that little 
platform, get ready to slash it just in case.  If he moves slow, then...well, 
just wait for it to come into range and chop 'em anyways.

°°°Here's another SaGunman on the right, with a chain above his head, this time 
a small platform separating you two.  Once again, you can ignore him and jump 
straight up to the chain; the difference, though, is that he may have gotten a 
couple of shots off first.  Time your jump to sail over the bullets, then go 
right the chain (and, once again, wait on the Spider Drone...look before you 
leap!).

°°°At the top of this stage, you'll have a Purple Flyer near the bottom-left, 
another incoming from the mid-right, and one right in line with the door on the 
left.  The only one that actually concerns you, though, is the one coming from 
the Door, so wait on 'em until it's in range, slice it, and mosey through the 
door.

~~~~~Stage 4-2C~~~~~

°°°Great, you're immediately dealing with another spikey floor.  Ok, 
then...wait until it retracts, jump over to the wall on the left, and climb up.  
You're safe from the Eye Orb's line of fire, so simply jump up and cleft the 
Brown Ninja in twain before he can get close to you.

°°°TThere is an Orange Ninpo above the next spike floor, if you're so inclined 
to get it (it's practically on the way), and an Art of Fire Wheel is located 
above the Next-to-Last chain in the stage, so feel free to get it if you would 
like it for the boss.  You can use it to take out the Eye Orbs on the chain in 
front above the next set of spikes, which is immediately followed by a Blue 
Ninpo...but if you don't want to waste it, you can simply ignore them and jump 
ot the wall (it's not like they're in the way).

°°°The door to the boss - a creature called "The Sandeater" - is blocked by a 
Spike Floor (go figure).  Wait 'til they drop, then jump down off of the chain 
and walk through the door to face the boss!

         ________________________________
_________~E~  Act 5: Castle Rock Fortress______________________________________
         ================================

Plot:    Since Ryu has breached Castle Rock's defenses, Clancy keeps his word
         and tells him what he knows about Foster's plans.  He tells Ryu that 
         he and Foster had been working on the 'Biohazard' plan (Resident 
         Evil?), but he cannot work alongside him anymore.  Foster has secretly
         created a monster called a 'BIO-NOID", experimental humans that have 
         been transformed with life energy.  Where does this life energy come
         from?  There is an "open seam between dimensions that was created when
         the demon died," says Clancy.  "An unlimited supply of LIFE ENERGY is
         flowing from the seam inside the ruins of the fortress," and Foster
         has been using this seam in his experiments.  Furthermore, the person
         that killed Irene - the Ninja-Clone Ryu encountered - is a Bio-Noid
         (which explains how it beat him).  Clancy then asks you to return to 
         the now-rebuilt ruins and stop Foster's evil plans.

         And thus, Ryu is forced to return to the upper regions of the Amazon
         and once again do battle in those, ruins, where the fabled battle 
         between Ken Hayabusa and Bloody Malth took place, the place where 
         Malth was struck down by Ken's son, Ryu, where Ryu ended the life
         (temporarily) of Guardia de Mieux, aka Jaquio, and where the climactic
         battle between Ryu and the Sealed Demon ended with Ryu triumphant.
         Because of that last battle and Foster's involvement on the project,
         the tear in dimensions was discovered and Foster began his experiments
         within the ruins.  Ryu, you'd better get out there and stop that mad
         man!
Scroll:  No
Boss:    Ryu Clone

~~~~~Stage 5-1A~~~~~

Well, here we are...again.  Ryu has returned to the scene of his final battles 
from NG I, and although the layout has changed, the difficulty has not (in 
fact, it is a bit harder than before).  A heavy downpour accompanies your 
task...but thankfully, it does nothing to actually, physically stop you.  It's 
just dreary, that's all.

°°°I don't know how many times I have to say this, but...look before you leap!  
When you walk up to that first pitfall, stop short of the edge and wait for the 
Running Alien to come to you.  If you do not, you could very well be knocked 
into the pit and die within the first 5 seconds of the stage.  Don't do that!  
Make sure you kill his 2 friends as soon as you land on the other side of the 
pit, too.

°°°Following that trio of nuisances, you'll encounter 2 Sky Drones, 2 Rocket 
Carts, an a Running Alien from the left.  What's a Ninja to do?  Well, start 
off by jumping (and hanging) from the bar where the 2 Rocket Carts are, then 
flip up between them and destroy them.  By then, the 2 Sky Drones will have 
reached your vertical level, so turn and wipe them out as well.  A step further 
to the right will cause 4 Sky drones to appear, 2 above and 2 below you.  Jump-
slash the upper-left one, landing on the left side of the bottom one, and slay 
the remaining 3 from here.  Further along this line, finally, will flag an 
Insect.  You can elude him, lure him to one side and axe him, whatever you 
choose.

°°°The next bar has its own set of irritants, which we shall now dispatch in a 
particular order to ensure safety.  First, jump across to this bar, causing the 
3 Sky Drones and Ball Bounder to appear.  Now, your safest route is to jump 
back to the first bar, slashing the Upper-Left Drone as you do.  From this 
vantage point, you can safely get rid of the rest of the drones before 
returning to face the Ball Bounder and the Rocket Cart.  Now, a common mistake 
is to try and crouch-slash the Ball Bounder...remember, it's a jumping 
creature, which means it'll practically fly right into the path of your sword 
if you swing while standing.  Move in closer to take out the Rocket Cart, 
avoiding it's three shots at the same time, then move back left to give 
yourself space-enough to handle the remaining Drone (if it didn't follow you to 
the left, which is fairly common).  

°°°Continuing right, you'll flag a Running Alien (no problem) and - at the very 
end of the bar - an Insect.  Trigger the insect, slay it, and drop down to get 
the next Bounder and the Soldier next to it.  By touching down onto this 
walkway, you'll trigger another Insect from above, which I would suggest you 
kill before moving on.  If you want the Vacuum Wave Art, jump back up to the 
bar and the leap to grab it.  Finally, be ready to slash the incoming Alien as 
you land after the next jump.  After him is the doorway.

~~~~~Stage 5-1B~~~~~

Believe it or not, this section is deceptively simple...unless you make a 
mistake, in which then you are going to deal with a LOT of bad guys VERY 
quickly.  So let's start with the safe way through this area, and I'll see if I 
can't come up with a way to handle the "I made a mistake" situation.  You start 
off seeing 2 Lifts, on moving Up/Down on the right side of the screen and a 
Diagonal one on the left.  Your first inclination would be to run over to the 
right, then jump from that one onto the left...and you would be wrong.  By 
moving up to a certain height, you'll incur 2 Sky Drones and 3 Purple Flyers.  
That makes for some hefty zoning, and you'll have to play a VERY patient game 
to get around these guys.

°°°The safe way through is to jump up onto the wall above the Door, then onto 
that platform.  Since you're already on the left-side platform, you no longer 
have to worry about the Drones (although, just to be safe, you might as well 
slice through the closer one and the upper-left flyer).  As soon as you see the 
platform above this one, jump up and grab onto it, then leap from it to the 
next platform (up and right from here).  Now just jump from this platform to 
the door, drawing your blade out (and through the soldier on the ledge) before 
you land.  Gee, that took all of 8 seconds.

°°°Ok, now what happens if you make a mistake and blow a jump, flagging the 
enemies but not being high enough to avoid them?  Well, now it's time to start 
playing the patience game and waiting for your opportunity to kill them.  If 
you want to use whatever Ninjitsu Art you have on hand to make your troubles 
easier, then feel free to...but I like to see if I can't do things without 
having to use such weapons (unless it's flashy), so let's stick to swordplay 
for now.  In general, you should take care of the Sky Drones (use the platform 
on the right), then wait for the Flyers to get within range for you to jump and 
cut them down from midair.  Now it's safe enough to jump up and continue your 
ascent...well, safe enough.  If you blow it again, climb back up and continue 
onward - the enemies in the upper region will respawn, so there's no point in 
killing them, dropping, then returning...they'll be back as well.

~~~~~Stage 5-1C~~~~~

°°°First step - after jumping down to the platform with the Blue Ninpo and the 
Health bottle, immediately slash to take care of the point-blank flagged 
Running Alien (how's THAT for a few adjectives?) and Ball Bounder.  Also...hey, 
that Health Bottle is probably going to come in handy after that last section, 
eh?

°°°Don't like those pesky Bounders?  Well, there's a fun way around 'em...but 
first, you have an Insect to take care of.  Jump and hang from the bar (right 
after the Health Bottle), triggering the Insect; now, jump back to the previous 
walkway and hack 'em in two.  From here, you can toy with the Bounders without 
putting yourself in any danger; see, Ball Bounders tend to try and follow your 
general location.  Since you're below them, all they can do is attempt to stay 
on the same vertical axis as you, which means if you hang along the left side 
of the bar, they'll drop onto the walkway...and if you move back right, they'll 
bound right into the pit beneath.  See?  No muss, no fuss!

°°°Actually, there is is a small fuss...further along the bar flags a couple of 
Insects to come and harass you, one from above and one from below.  You have 
enough time to wreck the upper mechanical moron first, then sidestep the second 
and hack through that one as well.

°°°The next 2 platforms aren't terribly annoying, although 1 mistimed hit will 
send you down a pit and that's just it (end rhymes).  Hop down and decapitate 
the soldier on the first jump, which will trigger 4 more Sky Drones and a 
Running Alien (the alien comes from the left).  Jump-slash the alien and the 
Drone in the upper-left (you can get 'em both with 1 swipe), then jump back to 
the bar and take care of the bottom 2 drones (you'll scroll the 4th off screen, 
so you can deal with it later).  Returning to the jumps, you now only have 1 
drone and the soldier to contend with, so jumpslash the drone, land and coup de 
grace the soldier, and turn to take out another Running Alien on the left.

°°°The final bar of this stage (just past the Vacuum Wave art) has a soldier 
and a Rocket Cart, and is quickly joined by 1 Alien, then another.  Hop up 
quickly and take out the soldier and cart, then deal with the aliens as they 
come.  If you'd prefer, you can hang beneath the bar and flip up to surprise 
(and demolish) your enemies, but I find it a tad more difficult to avoid the 
rockets and safely climb up this way.

~~~~~Stage 5-2A~~~~~

"Welcome to the Rock."  That's what Sean Connery said in the Michael Bay 
'splodefest, and it holds equally true here...as 'true' as such a statement can 
be.  Well, ok, so you're in Castle Rock (no relation to any Stephen King 
novels), and things are going to explode.  Good enough?

°°°This stage is rather nondescript, although the enemy placement can sometimes 
be frustrating.  I would suggest stopping to take out the "high-jump" soldier 
that enters from the left, so that you don't run into any crowding problems 
with the other soldiers on the right.

°°°Say hello to the Laser Spiders, kiddies.  These things suck.  When you first 
see one, you'd best just let it drop down the passageway so you can hack at 
it...and I'd suggest a crouching slash, so that you don't accidentally get 
caught by any lasers that might escape it's occular cavity.  At the top of this 
wall (the one that the first Laser Spider toppled off of) is another...and I 
don't think you want to rush it and cram a sword down it's throat.  No, I would 
suggest walking up, ducking the laser, then dismantling it after the laser 
passes overhead.  Then, feel free to grab the Fire Dragon and Orange Ninpo 
above.

°°°Ok, you are given 2 paths here - upper and lower.  Which one do you want to 
take?  If you want the Vacuum Wave, then take the upper route (slash the 
Soldier immediately as you land) and grab it, then double-back and fall down to 
grab the Sword Upgrade.  Continuing along the upper path is only going to give 
you a headache, as you'll have to drop down into an area full of Laser Spiders, 
Larger Ball Bouncers, and Soldiers.  That's no fun, so take it 1 step at a time 
and you'll end up surviving the encounter!

°°°All right, so you've decided to take the lower route.  Good.  First off, if 
you did not go along the upper area first, then the Soldier above is going to 
rebound off of the left wall and turn to run at you.  I would suggest pausing 
to kill this buffoon before you move onward; failing to do so will put you in a 
bad position as the Laser Spider will pin you down with its laser while the 
Soldier rushes you.  Oh boy, isn't THAT fun?  Grab the Sword Upgrade and 
demonstrate the power of an improved weapon, ok kids?

~~~~~Stage 5-2B~~~~~

°°°This is a rather easy stage, especially if you have the Sword Upgrade (which 
I don't know why you would skip).  Simply climb the walls, jump-slash anything 
in your way, and at the top simply wait until the Spider Drones aren't next to 
the edge when you jump down and attack the Ground Turrets.  Don't forget that 
you can destroy the bullets fired by those turrets, so there's no fancy dancing 
required to avoid 'em.  Presto, nothing too difficult to figure out on your 
own!

~~~~~Stage 5-2C~~~~~

°°°...and the last stage was simply foreshadowing what was going to come, eh?  
Here we have a long bridge, with enemies constantly dropping in all around you.    
The difficulty of the bridge, however, is that it disappears once you start 
running on it, forcing you to continue moving across without stopping for too 
long.  As long as you keep a cool head, though, you can survive the bridge 
without even encountering much danger.  Keep running to the left, slashing the 
soldiers in your way.  The items above you - especially the 1-up - are meant to 
entice you into jumping, which is where the Sky Drones will get you.  However, 
there is also a conveniently placed Invincible Fire Wheel Art on the bridge, 
which you can then initiate and simply walk through everything else you see.

~~~~~Stage 5-2D~~~~~

°°°Once again, this is a rather lax stage, with situations that aren't too 
difficult to work around.  I feel I should mention the Health Bottle that is a 
little ways up in the stage, which - if necessary - is a welcome sight for sore 
eyes (and wounds).  More Eye Orbs litter the walls, but you don't even have to 
bother attacking them (for the most part)...just jump around them and work your 
way to the top.

~~~~~Stage 5-2E~~~~~

°°°Well, it was bound to happen - more Laser Spiders and the return of the 
"Insect"; it isn't known as an Insect anymore, though, despite the similar 
flight style.  No, this thing looks like a helicopter prop was slapped onto a 
world globe.  Whatever the case, you'll get your first taste of one if you rush 
blindly towards the Laser Spider on the ledge just past the door.  Instead, 
take a couple of steps onto the ledge to trigger the Globecopter, then drop 
back left and eradicate it before continuing on.

°°°You see the Orange Ninpo that was just beyond that Laser Spider?  Wellsir, 
don't get it just yet...instead, walk towards it.  This triggers a Laser Spider 
to fall down behind you; kill it and THEN get the Ninpo.  See, it's playing 
safe!

°°°Another jump and another Laser Spider await you, as well as a red Wave-
Floater, a red Ninja...and a Laser Spider that is about to fall off of the 
ledge and join the melee.  Crouch the laser from the first spider and chop 
through the Ninja's knees, then take out the 2 drones as soon as the laser 
passes.  From there, turn around, take out the Wave-Floater...and for good 
measure, jump and take out the Ninja on the upper level, too.  That'll teach 
'em!

°°°Further along this path will trigger a Soldier from the left, and another 
Laser Spider on the floor.  You can get rid of this guy before he can shoot a 
laser, so there aren't too many worries about catching an eyeful.  There's 
another high wall with a Laser Spider on top of it, so I would suggest you 
allow it to fall down to your level before massacring it.  All that's left of 
this stage is to drop down in front of the door, taking care not to land on one 
of the two Laser Spiders down there, and finish out the level!

           _________________________
___________~F~  Act 6: Subspace Rift___________________________________________
           =========================

Plot:    Ryu succeeded in destroyed his evil Bio-noid Clone, and now stands 
         before Foster, ready to confront him about his evil deeds.  However,
         from the background comes laughter, as Clancy steps forward and 
         congratulates you and Irene on your work.  Even Foster is confused by 
         this turn of events, as Clancy informs you all that he intends to keep 
         the ruins for himself.  Greedy for the secrets of the Life Energy and 
         the powers it can bestow upon people, he enters the rift...and Foster, 
         seeking to stop him, enters as well.  However, Foster is ripped apart 
         by the sheer power of the Subspace Rift; thus, Ryu opts to enter 
         (stopping Irene from going, since it would probably kill her as well).
         Thus, Ryu enters this strange portal, not knowing what he may face...
Scroll:  Yes (Stage 6-2A, along the left wall)
Boss:    Mutated Foster

~~~~~Stage 6-1A~~~~~

Subspace has 2 forms that Ryu must pass through: a crystalline passage where 
familiar enemies exist (and were probably spawned) and the crystal-like ground 
of the first section is slick enough to cause Ryu to slide, and a less-
corporeal area where Ryu sinks into the ground unless he takes care to stay 
aloft.  Well, let's get to it!

Ooh, and something to keep in mind - when you run somewhere on the Crystal, 
you'll slide; however, if you jump, you'll land and there will be no sliding at 
all.  Thus, if you need a more precise stopping point, just jump.

°°°When you each the end of the first bar (the one you see when you first 
enter), stop so that the jumping soldier doesn't end up tackling you in midair.  
Continue to the middle of this Crystal platform, allowing the Soldiers beneath 
to run along their merry little ways (without crossing paths with you), then 
drop down to the lower level.

°°°When you hit the small platform jumps, you'll want to halt before making the 
first of such leaps - remember the lava pools in Stage 2, with the spurts that 
would rain down on you?  Well, those happen to be here as well.  Try to 
position yourself so that you'll be in between the falling bits, then continue.  
Jumping onto this platform, you'll quickly encounter another soldier, as well 
as another splotch of lava.  Kill the soldier, dodge the lava, and stick around 
on the platform so you can take care of the Wave-Floater so that it doesn't 
become a problem.

°°°The next platform has another Soldier (left) and Wave-Floater (right) coming 
at you, which I would suggest waiting to kill instead of blitzing past.  Once 
gone, jump and hang onto the bar, then flip up and crush the 2 ninjas (Ninji?  
Octopus, Octopi?).  Following this bar is a small platform with another Ninja 
on it; jump down, slashing him, then immediately jump back to the bar to 
effectively take care of the Globecopter coming up from below.  Aside from 
that, there is nothing left of this area to challenge you.

~~~~~Stage 6-1B~~~~~

You start this area out by falling a good, long distance.  It really shouldn't 
come as much of a surprise that you must then climb back up the middle, 
contending with purple flyers along the left and right walls and the occasional 
irritation from directly above.

°°°Careful when you leap onto the 2nd bar up, as a Purple Flyer from the right 
will come screaming at you.  Slash him before he becomes a problem, eh?  Now, 
when you go to jump up to the next level, hold jump and immediately hold DOWN 
on the control pad; this will prevent Ryu from grabbing onto the bar above him.  
If he does grab onto the bar, then the Flyer on the right will crash right into 
him; however, jumping without grabbing will flag the flyer without the physical 
damage, and will allow you to deal with him, the Flyer on the left, and the 
soldier above in a more timely fashion.

°°°The next 2 platforms are crystal, which means you'll be sliding on them if 
you try to walk.  As you might guess, both of them have their own respective 
Flyers (the right one from the right, the left one from the left), so stop and 
dispatch them both.  The 2nd one has its own trap involved, though, due to the 
sliding on the crystal - in order to stop, you have to either walk in the 
opposite direction (and halt your progress, but probably get hit by the flyer), 
slide right off, or jump...and once again, the game tricks you with another 
overhang.  Jumping here will cause you to grab onto another ledge, which has 
its very own Flyer to irritate you once you latch on.  Thus, if you're going to 
slide off, you can jump...but make sure you hold DOWN when you do.

°°°The rest of this stage is more timing-based than anything.  Jump up next to 
the soldier on the bar above (go for the far left side, so you don't become 
sandwiched), then take out the Flyer moving in behind him.  Above this is 
another platform, which I suggest you jump up on the left side so as to avoid 
leaping onto another enemy soldier.  Kill this soldier, destroy the Flyers on 
the left and right side ofyou, and swat down the Sky Drones before you jump 
down the right-side passage to get to the door.  Oh, and do be careful when you 
jump, since that crystal is awfully sharp.  You don't want to land on it, it'll 
hurt!

~~~~~Stage 6-1C~~~~~

°°°Careful!  The first drop-off here has another lava spurt, so crouch and hope 
you don't get hit!  After that, THEN jump over and dice the ninja.

°°°You see that bar above, with the Goo underneath?  Good.  Jump to the 
platform beneath it, landing on the edge (so you won't get hit by the shots it 
fires).  Now you can safely destroy the Wave-Floater on the right, and either 
kill the approaching Soldier from the left or climb up onto the bar and allow 
him to pass underneath.

°°°The next bar you find will have a pair of Globecopters fly up from 
underneath.  The funny thing about their flight pattern is that it really isn't 
very threatening...they criss-cross their paths, one of them coming up from the 
left (kill it) while the other comes from the right (also kill it).  They 
arrive at your level too far out to be effective, so you can destroy them both 
without any frustration.

°°°The platform after this bar has 2 soldiers rushing you as soon as you land 
(the first running, the second jumping).  I am not impressed, and neither 
should you...so just kill 'em and move on.  Further along the platform, a new 
Soldier will come from behind and another will jump in from the right; once 
again, kill them both for their stupidity.

°°°After the next bar is a small platform with a red Ninja on it.  Jump down to 
kill him...and this triggers another Globecopter.  Oh well...jump to the next 
platform and drop the Turret as soon a it opens to fire, then turn and kill 
ol' Globey as it flies at you from the left.  Finally, there will be another 
soldier coming at you from the left...but he can't possibly catch you, so 
ignore him and keep running to get to...

~~~~~Stage 6-2A~~~~~

Remember that part where I talked about the strange, area where you could sink 
into the ground?  Well, you've just stepped into it (ha ha ha).  Despite this 
area's disturbing look (it resembles intertwining intestines), you shouldn't 
find yourself having too much trouble...that is, unless you're jumping too much 
and aren't paying attention to where you're landing.

°°°Unlike the floor, the walls are perfectly fine for climbing, so start out 
the stage by moving up the right-side wall and jumping to the small patch 
of...uh...STUFF above you.  The black portion next to it is actually a pitfall, 
which you can fall through (back down to the bottom), so jump over it and move 
through the partition in the middle of the screen.  Here you'll encounter 2 
Ball Bounders, which you should remove ASAP.

°°°Ninpo Scroll Alert!  Climb up the left wall, past the first break (where the 
Skull Soldiers are) up to the second level is.  Wait until the Skull Soldier on 
this level (that's right, there's another one) moves toward the right, then 
jump down and slash him.  This will trigger the Sky Drones above (if they 
weren't triggered before), so jump and slice them out of the sky before they 
can become a threat (this will probably also cause the Scroll to fall onto 
you...no problems with that, though).  You'll also see a Pulsating Mass on the 
ledge to the right (there's another pitfall, so jump over it), which is just 
ITCHING to be hacked in half.  Jump over (make sure it has already fired off 
its shots before you jump) and kill it, then continue on to the wall.  If you 
want the Orange Ninpo, drop down and grab it...but be wary of what might be 
down there.

°°°The remainder of this area is fairly easy, actually - on the next ledge up, 
jump up and hack through the Pulsating Mass and Skull Soldier.  Now, you'll 
have to jump soon to avoid getting sucked down, so do so...and you'll end up 
triggering the Sky Drones above you.  Don't worry, they won't be a danger just 
yet - continue moving left, take care of the remaining Mass, and jump onto the 
wall.  Scale the wall all the way up to the top, skipping that other junk on 
the right, and then jump your way to the door.  You don't need to deal with 
anything, and 1 lousy Blue Ninpo is NOT worth the effort you'd put into getting 
it.

~~~~~Stage 6-2B~~~~~

°°°Unfortunately, it's a horizontal stage, which means you'll have to do more 
jumping just to make sure you don't die.  Actually, the area isn't too 
difficult for the most part, practically giving you an Art of Fire Wheel, an 
Orange Ninpo, and a Sword Upgrade with no challenge toward getting them.

°°°So you've gone halfway through the stage and you see that 1-up hanging 
around in the middle of the ceiling...and you don't know how to get it.  Man, 
didn't you just get the Art of Fire Wheel?  Jump back left (if you have to) and 
fire off a round, then collect the goodie as it falls to the platform beneath.

°°°The 2 platforms after this can be a little difficult, if you're not paying 
attention.  First off, you need to move forward enough to cause the Skull 
Soldier to appear...then all you have to do is wait for him to move to the far 
side (so you have room to jump), leap and slash, then take out the drones 
overhead.  Sure, if you're rushing through this area then you might have a 
problem, but...why are you rushing?  Haven't you learned by now that it's a BAD 
thing?

°°°Ok, so you're off of the platforms and back on a larger stretch 
of...intestine-based land.  Just past the divider is a Ball Bounder...but 
surprise, surprise, you've been caught again!  When you move past the portion 
that connects the top and bottom portions of the screen, 3 more Ball Bounders 
and 2 Sky Drones drop in to play.  As long as you stay stationary (i.e., don't 
jump forward), you can safely destroy these fools and continue on to the boss 
fight.  Have fun taking down Foster, now in a Mutated Form!

             ____________________________________
_____________~G~  Act 7: The Ancient Ship of Doom______________________________
             ====================================

Plot:    ...and Ryu has passed through the rift.  He stands within a highly-
         technological room, but his attention is drawn to the voice behind him          
         - Clancy, now showing a bluish skin color and an evil look in his 
         eyes, is impressed that Ryu survived the trip.  "You're just a little 
         too late," Clancy says with a grin.  "I've already made the energy 
         mine.  I'll show the world the power of these ruins."  He continues: 
         "Do you have any idea what these ruins really are?  We're still inside 
         the ruins!!  We're inside a dimensional warship!"  
 
         Clancy explains that these ruins are the foundation from which he will 
         create a new world, and decides to demonstrate the power of the 
         Warship by destroying a hefty section of the landscape.  He then 
         informs Ryu about a new age is beginning...and he isn't to be 
         included.  With that, a secret door appears beneath Ryu, and he falls 
         outside of the ship, landing on a metallic rung.  Ryu must return to 
         the interior of the ship and stop Clancy!
Scroll:  
Boss:    Clancy (Form 1), Clancy (Form 2), Ancient Security Robot

~~~~~Stage 7-1A~~~~~

Congrats, you've reached the final section of the game.  I'm sure it's been a 
trip...and now, it's only going to get harder.  Let's not waste time, so get to 
it!

°°°The wind outside of the ship is constantly forcing Ryu back (i.e., to the 
Right), which makes his running and jumping a little difficult.  You just have 
to learn to deal with it, I'm afraid.  Also, you can grab onto the bottom of 
the catwalk, so if you need to, drop down (and hold up) to avoid an enemy or 
two.

°°°Stop at the edge of the first jump to trigger the Wave-Floater, then wait 
for it to swing along for you to kill it.  If you don't, then you're going to 
have your hands full when the Globecopter and Turret show up.  Jumping over 
this gap will cause the Globecopter to rise up and the Turret (on the left) to 
start firing.  Getting out this one is simple, as you can jump straight up to 
avoid the 'copter and it will sail right off of the screen.  Now, rush the 
turret and destroy it, then take out the Soldier creeping up from behind.

°°°Next up, you'll notice a bar near the top of the screen.  Shortly prior to 
it, you'll see an Art of Fire Dragon orb...and this, once again, is 
foreshadowing the upcoming danger.  Now, there are a couple of ways to get out 
of this situation unscathed.
  1)  Jump up onto the bar and immediately rush left, slashing the Turret as 
      soon as its gate opens.  The foreshadowing pays off here, where 2 
      Globecopters slowly loft up from the bottom of the screen.  By 
      immediately going after the turret, you place yourself somewhat between 
      the 'copters as they rise (if necessary, you can run a little bit further 
      left to widen the gap).  This allows you enough room to slash the one on 
      the right (it reaches your height first), then turn and destroy the 2nd 
      one before it can reach you.  However, there is also a 2nd turret that is 
      on this bar, and by now it will have released a pair of projectiles; you 
      can either destroy these, or simply drop to a hang and climb underneath, 
      flipping up in front of it to destroy it.
  2)  You can run towards the Turret, flagging the Globecopters, then 
      immediately run back to the Right and jump down to the lower Bar.  From 
      this vantage, you may safely dispose of the 2 'copters, then return to 
      the Turrets and dismantle those as well.
  3)  Same as #1, except you time a jump so that one of the Globecopters on 
      your X-Axis flies up and off of the screen.  You are so high that they 
      are unable to stay level with you, and inadvertently elude themselves 
      right out of existance.  However, this does not actually destroy them, 
      and so if you were to rescroll the screen back to their flag-points 
      again, they would be regenerated.  You have to actually destroy them for 
      the flag to be removed (or simply avoid that flag altogether, whichever 
      is easier).

°°°The next higher-level bar you come across is ominously devoid of enemies.  
Drop down to the small platform after it, then run forward until the Soldier is 
triggered.  Dispatch this rushing fool, then walk to the very edge of this 
little platform to flag the Globecopter.  It will float up, slow enough for you 
to jump straight up and have it end up on your right side.  You now have the 
safety to destroy it at your leisure.

°°°The next small bar has an Art of Fire Dragon above it.  Grabbing it, 
however, flags a Soldier from the right and a Globecopter from the upper-left.  
I've found that, while it is possible to get right of the soldier and still 
have time to jumpslash the 'copter before it can harm you, the safer solution 
is avoiding a direct confrontation.  Drop to the underside of the bar and hang 
there until the Soldier runs past, then flip up and destroy the 'copter as it 
flies at you.  From here, you can simply let the Soldier run straight off of 
the screen and not worry about 'em anymore.

°°°When jumping to the next bar , you will trigger another Globecopter (gosh, 
aren't these guys annoying?) in midjump.  Thankfully, you should be able to 
adequately clear it, grabbing the Blue Ninpo in midair.  You have just enough 
time to turn and dispose of it before it can become an issue, then shift your 
focus to the turret on the other side of the bar.  I enjoy the hang-to-flip 
maneuver, avoiding the projectiles until you are right in it's face.

°°°The next bar has a Red Ninja (which you can dispatch by standing at the very 
edge of this bar and slicing 'em as he walks to the edge of his own).  However, 
shortly past this Ninja is another Turret, and jumping from bar to bar will 
cause a Soldier to appear from the right.  I suggest you kill the Ninja, then 
jump out just far enough to trigger the Soldier...then immediately hold right, 
landing on the first bar again (not the one with the turret), dropping to the 
underside as the Soldier runs past.  Move far enough to the right so that the 
Turret disappears from the screen, thus halting any more projectiles (until you 
move back Left again).  Once the soldier is clear, run back left, jump across, 
and destroy the turret as soon as it opens.  Sure, this may be a bit time-
consumning, but it's better than taking a bunch of unnecessary hits!

°°°Finally, the last Bar (near the top) has the door, a Turret in front of the 
door, and a Globecopter floating up from the bottom of the screen.  Since, at 
this point, time is of the essense, I suggest not even bothering with these 
two.  Just jump over the Turret and enter the door.

~~~~~Stage 7-2A~~~~~

Welcome back to the inside of the Ancient Ship of Doom.  Here is where you will 
find the greatest ratio of enemies-to-screen, with more opponents bothering you 
than flies at a picnic.  Swat those you can, but remember that time is going to 
become important very, very shortly.  If you played the previous area quickly, 
it might have taken you 30-40 seconds.  You only have 250 seconds all-told to 
get through the entire area and 3 bosses, which means in all likelyhood there 
will be at least 1 death.  Hopefully you've built up a nice reserve of extra 
lives, 'cause this stage is going to drain you of them.  Don't let it get to 
your nerves, though, or else you'll NEVER survive the game.

°°°Immediately after entering, run to the right wall, climbing up to the first 
platform, then jump onto it (triggering the 4 Sky Drones).  You really can't 
afford to stop and waste time with these ninnies, so jumpslash the one that 
appears at centerscreen, then crouch on the upper platform and take out the 
upper-left one.  From here, jump up to the right platform (that extends to the 
wall), taking out the Spider Drone in the process.  If it's far enough over, 
then you can simply ignore it, but it's usually going to be right in your way.  

°°°Leaping off of the right wall to reach the next platform, you will be able 
to see an Art of Fire Wheel (on the platform below you and on the left, next to 
a Turret), as well as an Orange Ninpo.  I wouldn't suggest bothering with the 
Fire Wheel, and the Ninpo isn't a necessity either (you will get another one in 
a much safer location shortly).  Take out the Turret on the next platform up 
(in the middle of the screen); jumping to this platform triggers 2 to 3 Purple 
Flyers on the walls (1 on the left, 2 on the right...sometimes the left-side 
one doesn't show up).  You can actually ignore all of them, much as you did the 
lower 2 Sky Drones in the beginning of the stage. 

°°°From this vantage point, jump straight up to trigger the Skull Soldiers on 
the left and right platforms (sometimes they don't appear; this is good for 
you).  Jumpslash either one (I would suggest the upper-left one, since it puts 
you in the vantage point to grab a Blue Ninpo and you won't have to deal with 
the right-side Flyer), then jump straight up again.  This will trigger the next 
platform's Skull Soldier and a weird, jumping creature (kinda looks like a 
Praying Mantis).  Jumpslash them both, then leap up to this platform.  

°°°You notice that Art of Fire Dragon orb above this platform?  Yeah, that's 
foreshadowing.  Jumping up to get it will flag 4 more Sky Drones (these guys 
don't always appear, which is a definite plus for you); if they appear, stop to 
destroy them, and if not...well, good!  Jump to the Right Wall, above the 
electricity field (careful jump!), then climb up until the platform above you 
triggers the Skull Soldier.  By now, you'll be able to see the Turret on the 
Left, 2 more drones will have popped up from below, and a Purple Flyer will 
have entered from the Left.  There are a few ways to get through this, 
depending on how much time you want to spend dealing with it, if you're willing 
to take a hit, if you want to use the Fire Dragon you (probably) just picked 
up, and what enemies show up.  

Let's assume all enemies have appeared and you don't want to use any 
Ninpo...then what?  Well, start off by waiting for the Skull Soldier to move 
far enough left for you to jumpslash, putting you onto his platform (and 
putting him out of his misery).  By now, the drones will be closing in, so all 
you have to do is run off the left side of the platform, between the drones and 
onto the lower platform where you can safely dispose of them.  (It would be 
good to time this so that you don't end up falling onto any shots fired by the 
Turret.)  Now, destroy them, jump back up, run over to the turret and destroy 
it, then run underneath the Purple Flyer and exit this area.  If you do manage 
to take a hit by something (say, the projectiles), use the temporary 
invincibility you have while flashing to run through everything and just get to 
the door.  Hey, it works for me!

~~~~~Stage 7-2B~~~~~

°°°Guess who's back?  That's right, it's the Insects!  No longer appearing as 
floating amalgams of Geography and Aerodynamics (Globecopters), you are forced 
to deal with mechanical representations of bugs!  Joy...and the first one 
you'll encounter will appear when you cross halfway along the small rise in the 
first portion of this stage (before the level where the soldier is).  Jumpslash 
this pest, then run to the very edge of the rise to flag another one from the 
right.  Turn and dispose of this one as well, then drop down and coup de grace 
the Soldier.  Fun, eh?

°°°Despite its odd appearance, the machine you see on the Bar above you is 
actually a form of Turret - this one, however, fires off balls of energy 
instead of pellets...and that's about the only difference.  You still have to 
wait for it to open up its firing mechanism before you can destroy it, so wait 
until it does before swinging wildly.  Be careful when grabbing the Orange 
Ninpo next to the electrical grate on the left, too...if you move too far over, 
you'll get hurt just trying to grab it!  I would also suggest getting that 
Sword Powerup, since you will definitely require it to survive this stage.  
Crossing underneath the bar, you'll encounter another Insect from below.  You 
barely have enough time to hand-over-hand past the electricity above, then leap 
up and destroy the Insect before it can hit you.  You'll probably want to grab 
that Vacuum Wave Art, too, since there will be enemies coming up that attack 
from above and below.

°°°You see the bar in the middle of the screen?  Wellsir, when you jump to it, 
you'll trigger 2 Sky Drones to appear from the top of the screen.  Since they 
automatically drop to your level, I suggest you jump onto the bar as high as 
possible, then immediately jump back and destroy the upper-right one.  You can 
then wait a little bit until the Left one will move within striking distance, 
then leap out and hack through the bar to destroy it.  From here, climb 
straight down onto the platform, killing the Soldier before you land (make sure 
he moves left before dropping down; if you don't, he could hit you and send you 
off the bottom of the screen for an instant death).

°°°All right, moving up the left side of this pillar will bring forth a Turret 
on the top of the left platform, as well as 2 more Sky Drones from the bottom 
of the screen.  Since there aren't any enemies approaching from the top of the 
screen, you can safely head up and land in front of the Turret, destroying it.  
Move further left until you can see the Soldier on the platform across the way, 
and wait until he moves left (so that you can leap out and kill him).  This 
will trigger 2 more Drones, these from the top of the screen; jump and take out 
the upper-left one, then wait on the remaining ones and slash them.

°°°From here, you get to deal with the oh-so-wonderful moving bar below.  The 
problem with the this bar (and the one following it) is the electrical grates 
blocking your passage.  You'll have to maneuver around them, above and below 
the bar, then jump to the upper bar and do the same before you can safely leap 
to safer ground).  I have 2 ways of safely getting past these annoyances 
without taking any (probably deadly) hits.
   1)  Position your wary Ninja on the right side of the platform, then wait 
for the bar beneath you to start heading left (have your rear foot at the very 
edge of the ledge).  Since you can jump a little bit faster (laterally) than 
the bar travels, you'll want it to be be ahead of you so that you don't 
overshoot it and plummet.  If you jump left from here, you should be able to 
pass between the electric bars on the upper track and the set just above the 
lower track.
   2)  If your timing is all right, then this way might prove to be a little 
easier for you...  Perch yourself on the left side of the wall (where the 
Windmill Star and Turret were located on top of), and wait for the bar to pull 
as far right as it can go.  Jump to it, then immediately hop over the first set 
of electric bars.  Following this, you can either hop over the next set, or you 
can drop to a hang, then leap back up onto the bar after you pass underneath 
the hostile environs.

After these, you'll have to contend with the upper bar; the important thing to 
remember is that it is far, far safer to hang beneath the bar and flip up after 
it begins moving left.  By doing so, you won't have to worry about being run 
into the Electric Wall on the right side of the track.

°°°Ok, so you see the 1-Up, and you want it.  No problem, just jump out and 
grab it...and you'll also take out an Insect in the process!  Great!  Now, 
don't fret as you land on the small platform, as the Soldier on it is almost 
always on the Left Side, which gives you enough room to land and kill him.  
Pause after this (don't jump up and grab the Blue Ninpo), since the 2 Running 
Aliens will be falling overhead and down into the pit.  As long as you don't 
jump, you won't be in any danger.  Still, just to be safe, you might as well 
move a little bit to the left...and crouch, if you're THAT insecure.

°°°Hey, you see that bar?  The one with the Soldier on it?  Wellsir, if you 
grabbed the Sword Upgrade (which you SHOULD have), then you can jumpslash the 
lower-ranking Military fool once he moves far enough right.  If not, then 
that's ok; just jump and hang from beneath, then leap up between the 2 Soldiers 
patrolling the top of the Bar.  I would suggest you kill the one on the Right 
first, since an Insect will be coming from that direction as well (and you can 
get 'em both in 1 slash).  If you want, you can jump up and take out the one on 
the left, then turn and get the 2 on the right...but whatever, man, you get the 
gist of it.

°°°Hey, the door is just past this bar!  However, don't leap after it just 
yet...instead, walk to the left end of the bar, triggering the Insect from 
below, then kill it.  From here, you can leap the Soldier in front of the door 
and run right past him.

~~~~~Stage 7-2C~~~~~

°°°A vertical climb, with the walls lined with electrical goodies.  Oh 
boy...looks like it's platform-hopping for you, Ryu!  Start off by leaping on 
top of the left Lift, then leap to the platform on the right.  2 Insects will 
then fly up after you, which both can be temporarly delayed by jumping straight 
up (causing them to pass beneath you).  Careful, though, as you might 
accidentally cling to the underside of the Lift beneath you; this won't help 
much, so drop off.  1 of the 2 Insects will then elude itself by flying 
straight off the Right, while the other will double-back from the left; I would 
suggest destroying it before progressing upward.

°°°Leaping to the Diagonally-travelling Lift, an Insect will fly at you from 
the left.  Destroy it, then continue to ride the platform until you see the 
Turret on the upper-right platform open up.  This is your time to jumpslash it, 
landing safely on the platform, grabbing the Orange Ninpo above it, and even 
safely leaping over the 2nd Insect to appear during that platform's path.  You 
are now free to turn back left and destroy this Insect as well.

°°°The next platform will have 2 Insects coming from opposite sides in rapid 
succession, meaning you'll have to kill the one on the left quickly before the 
2nd one has a chance to hit you (you can't leap either of them, so it's out-
and-out physical confrontation here).  Finally, there's 1 more jump to the 
platform on the Left, which takes you up to the level with the door, a Soldier, 
and another Insect from the upper-left.  You can actually outrun this Insect, 
but it's always good to be sure that you won't be hassled...so turn and destroy 
it before moving on.

~~~~~Stage 7-2D~~~~~

°°°Yes, this stage DOES have a bit of an awkward "no-enemy" introductory 
section.  That's what is meant to throw you off - by now haven't you learned to 
expect something like this?  This entire first section is meant to get you into 
a position where you will be forced to take a hit SOMEWHERE...so let's see what 
we can do to avoid that.  Moving forward towards the Soldier on the bottom 
floor will cause 3 Ball Bounders and 3 Sky Drones to fall from above.  As soon 
as they fall, take a quick step back left in between 2 of the bounders (you 
have plenty of room), then take out the 2 Bounders on the Right and keep moving 
(you'll also get the Soldier, too, so there aren't too many worries here).  
Jumpslash the Orange Ninpo (and a Sky Drone), then leap to the Right Wall.  

Since you continue moving, this gives the Rocket Cart above you very little 
time to try and fire off any shots at you.  That's a good thing, trust me.  
Leap up off of the right wall onto the level above, where a Ball Bounder will 
be in mid-jump towards the right.  Nail this guy with a midair slash, then turn 
around and take out the Rocket Cart with another jumping slice.  You will have 
eluded 1 of the Sky Drones, but the other will be in hot persuit...so crouch-
slash this one, then (finally) jump up and grab the Health Bottle.  After all 
you've been through, this is a VERY welcome sight.

°°°Ok, so you see the Vacuum Wave art with the Ball Bounder beneath it.  
Wellsir, you know that they always start out Bounding to the right, right?  
That's your chance to drop down and kill it before it can head left and hit 
you; furthermore, you might as well continue right and take out the next one as 
well before it can become a nuisance as well.  This will trigger a one-of-a-
kind enemy, the Face-Shield...and you'll probably end up destroying it with the 
same Swipe that takes out the 2nd Ball Bounder.  Oh well, it's not like this 
guy is special or anything...it only appears once!

°°°Keep running to the right, leaping onto the Wall and immediately jumping 
back up-left so you can destroy those 2 Rocket Carts on the above platform.  
You don't want these guys making your life any worse, and besides...if you keep 
running, you won't have to worry about the Aliens closing in from the Left.  
Also, the 2 carts will have launched their salvos towards the Left (after 
you've run underneath), giving you time enough to destroy them before another 
Volley can come forth.  

°°°After the Platform with the Blue Ninpo above it (to the right of the 
platform the Rocket Carts were on), keep running and land on the Bar in front 
of you.  This will trigger another Rocket Cart on the bar, which should be 
immediately destroyed.  Now, drop to a hang beneath this bar, climbing over to 
the Soldier on the platform in front of you; once he has moved far enough over, 
drop down and kill him, then wait for the next Soldier to move far enough right 
for you to jump to his platform and dispatch him as well.  This gives you the 
opportunity to grab a 1-up, something that you'll definitely need...after all, 
you're most likely going to run out of time in this stage.  Also, by 
immediately dropping to a hang you will avoid the Running Aliens above, saving 
you more precious health.

°°°Double-back to the bar, leap up, and head right to find the next Stage.  
Now, if you die (which you probably will), you won't start all the way back at 
the beginning of Stage 7-2.

~~~~~Stage 7-3A~~~~~

Welcome to the final leg of your journey, one that is quite the thorny path (ha 
ha).  The background has changed to a Bluish one, with White being the color of 
the platforms...and the spikes the protrude from the walls, floor, and ceiling.  
Safe landing areas are few and far between, while enemies are aplenty...and 
seeking to drive you onto an (impending) impailing doom.  Whee!!!  Good luck, 
mate...you'll need it.  

°°°The spikes all along the edges here will retract back into the walls after a 
set amount of time, then shoot back out after another pause.  The first set, on 
the Righthand wall, can be scaled past as soon as they disappear...but if 
you're not comfortable with making such a quick climb, you can also leap to the 
Right Wall, then wait for them to slide away before continuing.  The 2nd set on 
the Right Wall should be waited on, so that you can climb up to their 
temporarily-vacant spot before leaping to the Left.  Jumpslash the Skull 
Soldier on this area, then grab all the goodies you see.  Don't forget to 
destroy the Orb Eye and Blob, so that you don't have to deal with any 
projectiles either.

°°°You see the bar, right, the one with the Goo beneath?  Well, jumping onto it 
is (of course) going to trigger a few enemies, this time a trio of Sky Drones.  
Take out the above one, then immediately drop back down to the previous spot 
(where the Skull Soldier was), allowing you more room to take out the 2 lower 
drones.  Falling will cause the Purple Flyer to enter from the Right, on 
roughly the same level as the above Bar; jump up and destroy it as well, then 
wait on the spikes on the left to disappear.  I don't just mean the Right side 
of the Left wall (the spikes that almost extend to the Bar you're standing on), 
I mean the far left Wall (on the edge of the screen).  Trust me, you'll want to 
be over there.

°°°After scaling this thing to the top, you'll see another Bar with Goo beneath 
and a Skull Soldier on top, as 3 Sky Drones enter from the below the bar and 
another comes from the Right.  You can simply wait on the 3 beneath and crouch-
slash them, then destroy the last one as it comes toward you.  Finally, wait 
for the last section of Spikes to retract before leaping to the door.

~~~~~7-3B~~~~~

Ooh, you are going to LOVE this place!

°°°All right, so you're on the bar a short walk from the entry door, yes?  I 
hope I don't need to tell you that waiting to take out the Globecopter (yeah, 
it's back to THOSE things) is a good idea.  Leap to the next platform, 
destroying the Ninja as you land...and you'll notice that the block you're on 
immediately starts to disappear, just like the Bridge from Stage 5-2.  This is 
meant to make you panic and rush into danger, trust me.  Jump and take out the 
'copter behind you, then jump and land on the last Block of this decomposing 
bridge.  This will trigger 1 more 'copter from the right, which leaves you 
enough time to destroy it and take a running leap for the wall on the Right 
before the block beneath you disappears.  Great!

°°°The next bar you see - apparently every single bar you find is going to be 
dangerous - is followed by another set of blocks that disappear when you land 
one 'em.  Jump down and kill the Ninja, then jump to the first block of the 
next set, slashing the Wave-Floater as you go.  While on this single block, 
it's safe to jump (almost) straight up and land on the block right next to it, 
allow the incoming Globecopter to pass beneath you and elude itself right off 
the screen.  Jumping to the first block of the next pair will yield another 
one; this one you will have just enough time to destroy it, landing on the next 
block (much the same as the previous set), and jump to the next group of 
disappearing blocks.

°°°Are we having fun yet?  No?  Oh well...kill the first Ninja on this set of 
blocks, then jump-slash the incoming Globecopter and Blue Ninpo at the same 
time.  When you land, take out the next Ninja on the platform, then move to the 
3rd block from the end of this bridge.  This will trigger another Globecopter, 
this one from the upper-left, which you should destroy before leaping to the 
Bar above you.

°°°Leaping to this bar brings for 2 more 'copters (from beneath), so 
immediately jump up and kill the Ninja, landing between the 2 'copters, before 
you destroy them.  Finally, leap down to the platform in front of the door, 
killing the Ninja in front of it for his insolence...and continue on!

~~~~~7-3C~~~~~

°°°Wait for the spikes on the right wall to retract, then leap off of the wall 
and onto the bar in the middle.  From this vantage, jump to the platform in the 
upper-left, then (once again) wait on the spikes to disappear before continuing 
up.  Simple enough, yes?

°°°Once you leap off of the left wall and onto the small safe area (with the 
Orange Ninpo above it), I really should suggest that you make sure you are far 
enough away from the wall so that the returning spikes don't catch you in the 
back.  Hey, it's happened to me before, so there's no sense in letting it
 happen to you.  I'm here to help, remember?

°°°Ok, so you slashed the Orange Ninpo and the Sky Drone...now what?  Well, you 
can wait for the next one to come into range, then leap up onto the bar above 
and take out the Goo (watch out for projectiles!), then leap up onto the bar 
and destroy the soldier as well.  This, of course, is going to trigger more Sky 
Drones - three, to be exact - whom you'll want to get rid of before 
progressing.  Remember, you can actually jump through the ceiling (provided 
there aren't any Spikes in the way), so you can actually position yourself so 
that you are jumping straight up THROUGH the spike-covered column when 
destroying the 2 top Drones.  There are 2 above this bar, and the left-side one 
gives you a better vantage.  After this, crouch-slash the remaining drone, then 
wait on the spikes so you can leap up and onto the small Spike-Free area on top 
of the right Column.

   Note - to make leaping onto these columns easier, you can jump straight up, 
   then hold left (or right) to guide Ryu onto the wall.  No sense in 
   attempting a horizontal jump that, if missed, will send you into a wall full
   of tooth-like protrusions.

°°°All right, raise your hand if you did NOT correctly guess that 2 Insects 
would come a-buzzin' at you once you jumped to this small No-Spike area.  
Anyone?  Oh well...jump straight up to avoid one, then destroy the other.  Got 
it?  Oh, and this will trigger 2 Sky Drones in the upper-left; you can wait on 
them, if you'd like.  It does make things safer, after all.

°°°Jump up to the bar on the left, killing the Soldier as you leap, then wait 
on the 2 Drones from below.  It's safer to get rid of 'em now than to try and 
outrun them, trust me.  Now, all you have to do is wait on the spikes, climb to 
the very top of the Left Wall (as far as you can go), then leap back right, 
taking out the Insect as you go, then dispatch the 2 Soldiers and run for the 
door!

~~~~~Stage 7-3D~~~~~

Thankfully, the last bit of the final Stage (that's this section, in case you 
didn't know) isn't too terribly difficult...but it does have a couple of 
sections that almost feel like they are guaranteed damage towards your hapless 
hero.  This isn't true, so let's see if I can't guide you to safety past these 
Uncharted Waters, eh?

°°°Scale the first 2nd bar, waiting just long enough for the Skull Soldier to 
move to the Right (giving you enough room to drop down and kill him).  
Immediately move to the right side of this small landing, which will cause a 
Sky Drone to drop in on both sides of the above bar (and, more importantly, you 
can immediately elude the Laser Spider that appears on the Left).  Should you 
not move quickly enough, this Spider will fire off a Laser Bar that will 
certainly get in the way of things and make maneuvering quite difficult (that 
is, unless you're willing to wait for it to pass...but remember, time is of the 
essense!).  Jump and take out the 2 Drones before leaping to the next Bar.

°°°Ok, so this bar will flag 2 more drones, these coming from Below.  What're 
you gonna do?  Well, climb up on top of the bar and drop down to the next 
landing, where you will have enough room to take out these two pests.  I would 
suggest taking out the Skull Soldier as you land, too...you know, since that's 
easier than ignoring him.

°°°You see that Blue Ninpo, just past this 2nd Skull Soldier?  Don't grab it, 
just walk up beneath it.  This will trigger 4 Sky Drones (2 on each side), as 
well as 2 Laser Spiders.  Crouch and take out the Spiders, then wait on the 
drones and destroy them as well (you'll probably have to continue ducking the 
Lasers shot out by the Spiders, so be careful).

°°°Finally, there is 1 more Skull Soldier that you have to "drop in" on, and 
past the stage is smooth sailing.  Decide which Ninjitsu art you want - Fire 
Dragon, Fire Wheel, and Windmill Star all appear here - and then go on to do 
battle with the final villains.

                             ~~~~~Indeed~~~~~

Congrats, you've gotten to the bosses of the Ninja Gaiden series!  This is not 
going to be a picnic, lemme tell ya...but getting this far is a testament to 
your gaming abilities, no doubt.  Now, finishing off all 3 with 1 life...THAT's 
difficult.  Let's see you do it without using any Ninjitsu, either!

...ok, don't worry about making the game any harder than it already is.  That's 
just unfair!

      ..=-++x,.
   x##++x+=++x###
  +##  =xx++++++X#=
  ## -Xxx++++++++x#
   # #x+====+++++=#
   # #+=-x#+x++++++#
   # -+-#x- ,,;;;=X#        ~Ryu sez:  "Good job, yo!  You gotta be some sort
   # .=############              of super Ninja to do all 'dis, yo!  Woo!"
   ;# =## -+#####-
    #.-+#-+-,.. #
   # - ++++++##+#
  -x#,=+,==+xxx#.
### X ##X;,-##
##- #+x;+###X#.
 

============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================
     ---------------------------V:  The Bosses---------------------------
============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================

Hey, a boss section!  If you don't know how to handle a particular boss, then 
I'll do what I can to help.  That includes what to do with each Ninjitsu art, 
by the way, so there's no fretting over "Well, I don't HAVE that art, so what 
do I do with the one I DO have?"

 ___________________
_~A~  Mantis Warrior___________________________________________________________
 ===================

A greenish-being, humanoid in shape (basically), but sporting 2 large Mantis-
like "blades" on its forearms.  The Mantis Warrior has 2 modes: walking forward  
with its armblades drawn in, covering its chest, and down so that it may spew 
small bursts of flame.  These flamebursts travel across the ground, in 
intervals slow enough for Ryu to jump between them.  Furthermore, Mantis stops 
moving when it is creating these flames, which means you do not have to worry 
about it pressuring you any further.

(Man)Handling the Mantis Warrior is rather basic - move in close, wait for him 
to drop his arms, slash him a couple of times, then jump over the 3 flames.  If 
you feel confident enough, slash him while jumping over the flames; in this 
case, having the Sword Upgrade is major bonus, since you can space yourself 
further away and thus have more time to jump over the fire.  Keep this up until 
he's toasty (ha ha).  Now, onto strategies revolving around Ninjitsu abilities.

Windmill Shuriken:  Fairly simple - wait 'til it's throwing flame, then toss
                    a Shuriken down its gullet, jump the fire, and do it again.
Fire Wheel:         Wellsir, thankfully the Fire Wheel has somewhat decent 
                    horizontal range...however, you really should have a 
                    different ability than this.  Attack much the same as if 
                    you were equipped with the Windmill Shuriken, but get a 
                    little closer before unleashing your flaming fury.
Fire Dragon:        Hang on the left wall, wait until he (it?) takes a couple 
                    of steps forward, then pelt 'em as soon as he opens up.
Invincible Wheel:   Bah!  Not only do you ONLY get 2 uses of this (at max), 
                    but it doesn't keep you invincible versus the fire...and it 
                    immediately disappears after hitting Mantis once...AND it 
                    only does 1 point of damage!  This is probably the most 
                    worthless Ninjitsu you could take into this fight!  In all
                    seriousness, I suggest you not even ATTEMPT to use this
                    during the fight; just go out with your sword and hack him
                    down to size.
Vacuum Wave:        This is NOT a good Ninjitsu to have; furthermore, just to
                    have it in this fight you would have to avoid picking up
                    quite a few items.  The only way you can make use of this
                    is by jumping over the Mantis and hoping it hits him. Since 
                    you'll probably end up trading hits with him doing this,
                    that means you're in even WORSE condition for having it!
Sword Upgrade:      The Dragon Sword gives you that much range, which means you
                    don't have to get as close when he opens up to release his
                    ground flames.  However, you shouldn't have to worry too 
                    much about getting away from 'em when he moves forward 
                    again, since he's rather slow and doesn't move too far to 
                    begin with.

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Fire Dragon.  Hang out on the wall, pelt 'em with whatever 
you have, then engage with normal weaponry.  Sounds good to me, since it gives 
you plenty of uses (compared to the others) and it leaves you nice and safe 
while attacking.  The Windmill Shuriken is good, but the only way you could 
have it against him is if you didn't pick up any items along the way; this is 
not too terribly difficult to do, but it's a lot easier to progress through the 
stage if you hack down all the enemies you see.  Sometimes, items get in the 
way, and since the last one you can pick up is the Fire Dragon, it makes sense 
to have it as your weapon.

   ________________
___~B~  Night Diver____________________________________________________________
   ================

Resembing a large, winged machine with a maw and 2 hands, the Night Diver is an 
interesting creature to behold and fend off.  Suiting the areas previous to 
your locating him, the Night Diver enjoyed chucking fireballs at you...although 
his flying is something of a quandry, as he is very far from the outdoors and 
(logically) would probably not be a creature of flight unless he occasionally 
visited the outside.  

Regardless, let's talk of how he tries to hurt you.  As with any other boss in 
the game, physical contact will damage Ryu.  Unlike the first boss, where he 
moves slow and is generally VERY easy to avoid touching, the Night Flyer enjoys 
flitting about the room, flying in a slightly off-kilter wave pattern; 
sometimes the apex of his flight is in the middle of the room and near the 
bottom, sometimes it is near the ceiling...you get the picture.  That's not 
all, though, as sometimes ol' Nighty likes to stop and chuck a volley of 5 
fireballs down towards the ground.  These don't have too terribly large a 
spread, though, so you aren't in much danger from them.

You basic gameplan is just as you'd figure - don't stand underneath so that 
you're not in danger of being set on fire.  What else?  Try to avoid getting 
pinned in a corner by monitoring his flight plan, moving left (or right) to 
keep away from him while he's coasting about.  When he's low enough, take a 
swing or two at him (preferably if he's stopped to chuck some fire), then move 
back so that you don't get hit as he continues up back towards the top of the 
screen.  It shouldn't be TOO difficult, so let's get to the Ninjitsu abilities; 
after all, these make the fight a LOT easier, n'est pas?

Windmill Shuriken:  The Windmill Shuriken - although not as difficult to hold 
                    onto as in the previous stage (since you can pick one of 
                    these up prior to the boss battle) - isn't the best 
                    applicable tool against him.  It gives you more range in 
                    terms of hitting him, meaning you can distance yourself 
                    further away while pelting him for damage.  However, you 
                    still have to wait for him to come down to the ground, and 
                    if you whiff the Shuriken then you either have to try and 
                    boomerang it into him - which can be dangerous, given his 
                    flight plan - or simply grab it and throw another one.  A 
                    wasted effort, as it is.
Fire Wheel:         Do I even have to explain this one?  Ok, then...the Night 
                    Flyer is usually above you and (hopefully) in front of you.  
                    The Art of Fire Wheel travels upwards and in front of you, 
                    and covers a fairly nice spread...thus, walk into the room 
                    and chuck those flames at your airborne nemesis.
Fire Dragon:        This isn't TOO bad an art, although it's not my favorite.  
                    Since his flight plan isn't the easiest to follow, this 
                    means you're going to have to use the platforms to your 
                    advantage when the Fire Dragon is in your possession.  Wait 
                    until he flies low enough, then lambast him with whatever 
                    you have.  It's important to remember that it's much, much 
                    safer to drop to the ground instead of jumping, since 
                    jumping puts you higher in the air and in a less-
                    maneuverable position.  Bad news, especially if you have to
                    get out of the way when he's a-coming up.
Invincible Wheel:   N/A.  This doesn't exist in this stage.
Vaccuum Wave:       N/A.  This doesn't exist in this stage.
Sword Upgrade:      By allowing yourself more distance, that gives you an 
                    almost-free range to attack from without fear of being hit 
                    when he hovers back up again.  Still, don't be TOO 
                    confident or you might get nudged and still take some 
                    damage.

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Fire Wheel, by far.  This allows you the freedom to roam 
about the room while still retaining the safety of attacking from a distance 
and having a good shot at connecting with that attack.  Plus, you get the most 
number of attacks possible (assuming you have 50 Ninpo, you'll get 6 tosses), 
so that's 3/8 of your opponents' life gone.  From there, you only need 10 more 
slashes to get the job done, and that shouldn't be TOO hard, eh?

     __________________
_____~C~  Great Koganei________________________________________________________
     ==================

A strange, pink creature of sorts, the Great Koganei is a master of the leaping 
tuck.  While this might not affect you that much, just wait until you meet his 
twin brother.  The twin, invincible brother.  The same brother that likes to 
bound about the screen at the same time as the original.

Now, these two don't create much of a problem through their bounding.  Granted, 
the pools trickles of water on the platforms make it difficult to run and jump 
accurately, but their leaping should be the least of your concerns.  After 
every 3 jumps, this dastardly duo stops where ever they are perched, followed 
by the slinging of 3 Windmill-esque Stars.  These stars don't boomerang, but 
are each tracked to your location at the moment they are thrown.  Thus, you 
have 6 throwing stars all homing in on where you are, and it's best that you 
avoid being hit by those.  Following these, they return to their leaping 
antics, rebounding off of the walls so as to stay onscreen.

How do you cope with this?  Well, first off the only one you can hurt is the 
one that starts off on the Right half of the screen.  Thus, keep track of this 
one; he's the one you should be gunning for.  Your best opportunities for 
attacking via swordplay are in the middle of his jumps, when he's about to 
touch the ground - slash at him during these leaps and you should do fine 
enough (when you first enter the room, you can run over and land as many as 6 
hits before you have to jump away or become Shuriken fodder).

The most difficult thing about these two, however, is the fact that after a 
while one of them will lose the timing that the second one has for throwing.  
That is to say, eventually one will be throwing Shurikens while the other is 
still jumping, then THAT one will start throwing shurikens...so you'll have 
more than just 1 volley to deal with, you'll essentially be avoiding 2 sets of 
blades being hurled at your head.  No easy feat, what with those two jumping 
and the watery platforms impeding your safe jumping.

With a little bit of luck (and the right Ninjitsu art), you should be able to 
dismantle these two before they can get to their 4th volley of Shurikens.  If 
not...then good luck.


Windmill Shuriken:  Ironic, eh?  It's a big Shuriken Fest, and they are on the 
                    winning team (trust me).  However, with the Windmill 
                    Shuriken, you can pelt the damage-able one from much 
                    further away, giving you the ability to concentrate more on 
                    dodging the other jumping fool.  
Fire Wheel:         Ah, another good fight...see, these guys like to jump at 
                    you.  Furthermore, they will sometimes find themselves on 
                    the platforms above you.  What does this mean?  Duh, 
                    stupid, that means they are right in the way of being set 
                    on fire with your 1337 N1nj4 5k1ll2, yo.
Fire Dragon:        Er...well, if you can hold onto one of these by the time 
                    you reach the Great Koganei(s), then good for you - stand 
                    on one of the platforms and pelt them from above, then run
                    away as those Shurikens come a-calling.  However, clinging
                    to the wall and firing these off isn't the best idea, since
                    you have to jump down before you can successfully evade
                    their attacks.
Invincible Wheel:   Despite how easy it makes some of this stage, I would NOT
                    suggest holding onto the Invincible Wheel up to these guys.
                    You're only looking at 1 point of damage per hit - which
                    means you only get a lousy 2 points of damage at max Ninpo
                    - but even worse is the range on it.  Finally, you're not
                    protected from the Shuriken with this equipped, so you 
                    still have to dodge them all.  Not a good thing...you'd
                    best get a better Ninjitsu to suit your needs.
Vacuum Wave:        This wouldn't be a bad Ninjitsu to have on hand if there 
                    weren't a few problems with it.  First off, there's no 
                    difficulty finding yourself beneath one of these 
                    two...however, you still have to avoid the Shurikens, and 
                    it's better to NOT be directly below one of 'em (meaning 
                    less room to dodge) when the Shuriken come out.  
                    Furthermore, Vacuum Wave costs 10 Ninpo, which means even 
                    your maximum number of uses will only give you 5 shots.  
                    You get more with Fire Dragon or Fire Wheel...and they are 
                    easier to keep ahold of, too (they appear more frequently 
                    towards the end of the stage).  I wouldn't suggest trying 
                    to keep this, since it'll just make the entire stage more 
                    of a chore.
Sword Upgrade:      Wow...to be honest, the difficulty associated with getting
                    this sword upgrade actually makes up for itself by how much
                    easier it makes this fight.  By giving you a greater range
                    of horizontal AND vertical damage, you can hit these two
                    bounders with a lot more safety.  This means you have more
                    room to book it out of town when the stars start flying at
                    your head, and that's a definite plus.

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Fire Wheel.  They jump, which puts them in range.  They're 
usually above you, which means they're free for attacking.  You get 6 tosses 
(at max, although you'll probably only have 3-4 when you get here), and - best 
of all - it's the last Ninjitsu before the door.  You don't have to worry about 
holding onto it or anything!

       ______________
_______~D~  Sandeater__________________________________________________________
       ==============

Man...honestly, these things don't look THAT weird, but they are pretty iffy 
lookin'.  Anywho, the Sandeater generally looks like a Turtle wearing a helmet 
and sporting a couple of spikes on it's shell.  The Sandeater is quite the step 
down in terms of difficulty, when compared to the Great Koganei (the previous 
boss)...and that's not really a bad thing, given how difficult this game can 
be.

The Sandeater has 4 things he does - jump out of the ground, walk slowly across 
the ground, burrow back into the ground, and chuck a few volleys of the Art of 
Fire Wheel while underground before jumping back up.  There are 3 platforms for 
you to abuse, which I heartly suggest you do - by getting directly above where 
the Sandeater is (throwing the Wheels from), you can pretty well avoid them 
entirely; however, following these volleys, he will jump back up from the 
ground again, attempting to spike you with the points on his back.  Be ready to 
jump to the side when he leaps back onscreen, as it is most definitely 
hazardous to your health if you do not.

In terms of attacking...just wait for him to hop up, then slowly follow him and 
hack away.  If you're good, you can knock off 8-10 bars of life in just 1 
sitting, then book it up to the roof and avoid the Fire Wheels before moving 
off of the platform (where he'll be jumping shortly).  Nick the rest of his 
life off...and if you have to, go back up for another round.  Be careful, as 
he alternates between 5 and 3 volleys of Fire Wheel (first round, 5, second 
round 3).

Windmill Shuriken:  The Windmill Shuriken gives you the luxury of hitting the 
                    Sandeater while remaining closer to a wall, so you can get 
                    up to the top of the screen in a quicker fashion.  Works 
                    for me, eh?
Fire Wheel:         The Fire Wheel allows you the ability to pelt him as soon 
                    as he jumps, as well as the entire time he is on a 
                    platform.  Unfortunately, this time is brief - he quickly 
                    drops back to the ground - so you'll have to make fast use 
                    of it.
Fire Dragon:        This should be fairly simple to figure out - he likes to 
                    walk on the ground, so stand high on a platform and hit him 
                    a few times without having to even get near the lout.  
                    Plus, you don't have to run to a platform to avoid the Fire 
                    Wheels - you're already there!
Invincible Wheel:   N/A.  There isn't one of these in this stage.
Vacuum Wave:        One of the last Arts to appear in the stage, the Vacuum 
                    Wave isn't too terribly bad to ahve on hand.  When he first 
                    jumps onscreen, the Sandeater lands on a platform.  You 
                    have ample time to run beneath that platform and unleash a 
                    few Waves into his underside before hacking at his back, 
                    giving you even more free damage.  Heck, since you don't 
                    really need Ninjitsu to win this fight, why not go ahead 
                    and use it?
Sword Upgrade:      Although not too terribly necessary, since Sandeater is a 
                    slow buckaroo, but it IS nice to have; problem is getting 
                    the blasted thing, which means you have to avoid the spikes
                    below it and survive the rest of the trip up to Sandeater's
                    quarters.  Personally, I would suggest you not bother - it
                    doesn't aid that much in the stage itself (you can manage
                    without it), and you don't put yourself in a perilous 
                    situation when trying to get it.

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Fire Dragon, if possible.  You have a safer vantage point 
when attacking with it, so you can worry less about avoiding the Fire Wheels.  
I'd say the Vacuum Wave is a good art, too, despite its extra cost...however, 
you ultimately do not need anything except your Sword to win this fight, so 
don't fret over which art you have and which one you MIGHT need.  Any Art will 
do just fine.

         ______________
_________~E~  Ryu Clone________________________________________________________
         ==============

I'm sorry, but THIS is a clone?  Man...ok, granted, he transforms prior to the 
fight, but still...maybe he's just going Super Saiya-Jin, eh?  I mean, that's 
what it kinda looks like...although it's all shadowy and such...ah, whatever.

The Ryu Clone is a bio-noid that was built to resemble Ryu, fight like Ryu, 
talk like Ryu, cook a mean Quiche like Ryu...you get the picture.  However, 
upon transforming into this form, the Ryu Clone's only similarity to Ryu is 
that he encorporates the Windmill Shuriken into his attack pattern.  He jumps 
twice on the right side of the screen, each time throwing a Shuriken at ground 
level, then high-jumps to the center of the screen, dropping 3 flames at the 
top of his jump, then jumps to the left side of the screen, depositing more 
flames into the Bank of the Ground.  He then jumps twice again and repeats the 
pattern.

Now, there are several times where you may attack him during all of this.  If 
you jump the initial Shuriken, you have the opportunity to slash at him a 
couple of times.  When he bounds out to the middle of the screen, he's open 
from the left side (or right side, depending on which side he's jumping to), 
and then it's back to the Shuriken jumps.  Another bonus is the fact that there 
are deadspots between the dropped flames, which means you can stand between the 
fireballs and continue attacking him.  Hey, it makes for good maneuvering AND 
easy attacks!

Windmill Shuriken:  A taste of your own medicine, eh?  The Windmill Shuriken 
                    allows you the ability to attack him from much further 
                    away.  Since his attack styles seem to make it difficult to 
                    get in close, this is a definite plus.  Chuck one out for 
                    an almost guaranteed hit, since you'll most likely be 
                    jumping (and, thus, whiffing will soon be rectified by the 
                    boomerang effect).
Fire Wheel:         The Fire Wheel is a godsend here.  Your clone enjoys 
                    superjumping (maybe he stole Samus Aran's Power Boots?) 
                    while attacking, then jumping around the room some more.  
                    This puts him in absolute prime positioning for a few Fire 
                    Wheels to be lobbed in his general direction.  Plus, 
                    they're fairly cheap to use (when compared to the Vacuum 
                    Wave or Windmill Shuriken)!
Fire Dragon:        Now this is NOT a Ninjitsu you want to have on hand when 
                    you reach ol' Cloney (George?).  It requires a downward 
                    angle of attack, which means you can perch yourself on the 
                    left wall and hit him for a whlie...but you have to time it 
                    just right so he is grounded when you throw it (not too 
                    easy), or wait until he gets closer to hit him.  The 2nd 
                    option puts you within physical reach, which isn't good at 
                    ALL...so you'd best make sure you have another Art on hand 
                    when you reach him. Hey, it's not like you can't get the 
                    job done with just your sword...
Invincible Wheel:   What do you plan to accomplish with this?  You're not 
                    invincible to his attacks, nor are you invincible to him.  
                    Now, I can see how keeping the Invincible Wheel is a handy 
                    idea - it makes the stage a lot easier to swallow - but the 
                    boss fight gains practically nothing from your holding onto 
                    this.  No, you should drop it in favor of another art 
                    before entering the room.
Vacuum Wave:        Initially, I had thought this to be a worthless art; 
                    however, I was actually wrong about that idea.  Here's how 
                    - you know how the Ryu Clone jumps across the room in 2 
                    leaps?  Wellsir, position yourself under him when he's 
                    jumping and throw out a Wave Art.  Hey, that's an easy hit, 
                    a little easier than trying to get close enough to slash at 
                    'em.  Of course, it's not much, but there's a certain level 
                    of safety it provides that makes one realize how handy it 
                    can be.
Sword Upgrade:      It's not necessary to the fight (duh), but it certainly 
                    doesn't hurt to have that much more range on your physical 
                    attacks against him.  You can get further away from the 
                    Shurikens when hitting him, and you don't have to get as 
                    close (i.e., put in as much danger) when he bounds to the 
                    middle and left/right side of the screen.  I'd suggest 
                    grabbing it.

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Fire Wheel, as usual.  You find a lot of enemies that are 
airborne, so logically the best art to use is the one that has good range and 
tags enemies in the sky.  That's the Fire Wheel!

           ___________________ 
___________~F~  Mutated Foster_________________________________________________
           ===================

"Australian for Beer."

It's interesting to see that Foster was ripped apart by the Subspace energy... 
and yet, he gets to come back stronger than ever.  Ryu, on the other hand, is 
strong enough to simply move about in the Subspace rift...but he gains no 
powers from it.  Bah!

So Foster got mutated, and seeks to kill Ryu.  Gee, big surprise - it was about 
"Boss Time" anyways.  So Foster is a yellowish being forced to crawl along the 
ground, with a big spike on the top of his head.  He can open his arms (or 
whatever's left of 'em) and fire off a fireball at you, forcing you to jump.  
He then rams himself into a wall (spike first), causing several little 
creatures to drop through the area.  He then fires off another fireball before 
ramming the opposite wall.

This fight can be difficult for a few reasons.  First of all, the floor 
continues to drag you down, meaning you have to jump to move quickly (and avoid 
being pulled down).  This means avoiding his fireball and dash attack is best 
left to hanging on a wall.  2 problems arise with the wall, however...when he 
rams it, you fall off (and, subsequently onto him).  Furthermore, ramming the 
wall - as I said before - causes several creatures to drop down upon you.  This 
means you to have to jump over him and avoid the creatures.  This is a problem 
because this is also (conveniently) the only time you get to attack him.  
Joyous, eh?  Well, at least you can destroy the falling creatures...it might 
not seem like much, but there IS a way to handle them effectively (cough VACUUM 
WAVE cough).

So here's the gameplan - jump on the wall, wait for him to ram it, then jump 
off, hopefully avoiding any buggers falling from the ceiling.  If you're safe, 
then turn and slash him a couple of times, then start heading towards the other 
wall.  Your emphasis should probably be on avoiding the falling critters 
instead of wailing on him, since that could get you killed rather quickly.

Finally...supposing you DO beat him, I suggest you cling to a wall - the floor 
can still drag you under and kill you while you're busy watching Foster die.  
Don't let that happen!

Windmill Shuriken:  The Windmill Shuriken has the range that gives you a great
                    lead in this fight.  You no longer have to worry about 
                    landing anywhere near Foster, so you can avoid the beasts 
                    from above and still manage to land a hit or two on him.  
                    Good for you!
Fire Wheel:         Ooh...probably not a good pick for this fight, since you 
                    have to get rather close to make sure you hit him.  
                    Honestly, when you're at that range, you're probably better 
                    off just slashing the beast.  However, it does redeem 
                    itself by allowing you to destroy some of the falling 
                    creatures.  You get a little bit of protection while 
                    attacking, but nothing major...after all, it's not directly 
                    up, now is it?
Fire Dragon:        Well, it's not the Fire Wheel, I'll give it that.  The Fire 
                    Dragon is actually near-impossible to use, since you have 
                    to wait until Foster is vulnerable, then turn, jump, and 
                    lob the blasts at him.  If you could easily turn in air and 
                    throw them, that would make dealing with this fool a lot 
                    easier...but that just doesn't happen, so you're going to 
                    have to make due.
Invincible Wheel:   N/A.
Vacuum Wave:        Surprisingly efficient, if you use it right.  The trick is,
                    you're not supposed to use it as an offensive weapon; when
                    Foster rams the wall, drop down and start the Vacuum Wave 
                    to take out the falling bounders.  This means you are free 
                    to hack at his hindside!  Yay!
Sword Upgrade:      The funny thing about this stage is that there are two - 
                    count 'em, TWO - Sword Upgrades to be had.  Grabbing a 2nd
                    doesn't increase it anymore, however, so it's not exactly
                    required that you survive long enough to get them both.
                    Still, being able to get further away from Foster means
                    you can worry less about the falling stuff and how precise
                    a landing you nail.  It's just slash and jump, jump and
                    slash from here on!

Preferred Ninjitsu:  I'd say my best bet is the Vacuum Wave, especially since 
you no longer have to worry about the falling critters above - just use it as 
protection instead of an offense, and you'll survive this encounter relatively 
unscathed.  However, the Vacuum Wave Art IS difficult to hold onto, so you're 
probably going to have to just go at it with Ye Olde Sworde.

             ______________________
_____________~G~  Clancy (1st Form)____________________________________________
             ======================

You know, the cutscene prior to this fight depicts Clancy as...the Super 
Shredder.  Sure, I'm being facetious, but he DOES kinda look like 'em, with the 
build and the spikes an' all...  

Seeking to destroy all of Mankind, Clancy has harnessed the power of the 
Ancient Ship of Doom and turned himself into a super-powered being.  Offering 
Ryu the opportunity to join him in the rebuilding of a new world, Clancy was 
shunned by the Ninja due to his plans for mass genocide.  Thus, it's time for 
some ninja-thwomping!

Clancy's "super life power" body is quite different-looking than what the 
cutscenes would lead you to believe.  Instead of a yellow, mutated being who 
appears as if his skin is ready to fall off, you instead fight a large, red 
character that looks as if he is sporting a vest alongside a pair of Football 
Shoulder Pads.  Apparently, he has a jetpack on him somewhere, 'cause he enjoys 
flying, too.  Remember the Night Diver, that annoying cave boss from Stage 2?  
yeah, well, Clancy flies in the same style of pattern; however, Clancy doesn't 
go near the ground, which means you have to jump to reach him.  That's bad news 
for Ryu.  He also likes to toss out 3 homing bullets, which - as the name would 
dictate - track your location and attempt to hurt you.  Thankfully, you can 
destroy these bullets with a sword slash or Ninjitsu attack, so get 'em off of 
your back in a hurry!

So guess what happens if you manage to hit Clancy?  Well, he stops moving and 
stops hurling projectiles at you.  Believe me, this ISN'T a good thing - when 
this happens, he calls upon the mighty power of Zeus and asks for a great rain 
of thunder and lightning, the likes of which have NEVER before been seen, so 
that they may raze the ground and destroy everything around him for CLANCY HAS 
DECREED THAT THOU SHALT PERISH FOR THINE SINS, FOOLISH MORTAL!  A HA HA HA!!!

...anywho, he stops moving, but this means you should START moving.  3 bolts of 
lightning strike the ground, one at a time, at the near-exact location you're 
standing.  The trick is to move out of the way before you get hit, and keep 
running so the second (and third) don't catch you either.  If you run into the 
corner, you'd better hope you can double-back in time to make it out of the 
threat range, or else you'll be zapped good by a shock of electrical fury.  
After these 3 bolts (which are QUITE difficult to avoid, so hope for the best), 
Clancy returns to flying and throwing.

So in order to beat Clancy, you have to hit him; however, whenever you hit him, 
he stops moving and starts up with the lightning.  If you have the right 
Ninjitsu, hit him a few times before the first Bolt hits the ground, then dodge 
them and resume your attacks.  If you have to attack via swordplay, then make 
sure you are close enough to hit - you don't really have too much to worry 
about, since connecting causes him to stop moving.  It's frustrating to hit, 
then run away, then hit again...but it's probably the safest method I know of.

Windmill Shuriken:  The Windmill Shuriken, as usual, gives Ryu the luxury of 
                    keeping his distance while pelting his enemies with 
                    weaponry.  Unfortunately, Ryu doesn't get as many tosses of 
                    this as he does the Fire Wheel, which means he's going to 
                    have to get in close with his sword more once the Ninpo 
                    runs out.  Quite dangerous...however, you have to jump and 
                    slash at Clancy to hit him, while the Shuriken can be used 
                    from the opposite platform or from a distanced jump.  Yay, 
                    it's that much safer!  Heck, if you're daring, then you can 
                    throw one out, jump over it so it'll boomerang, then dodge 
                    the lightning bolts while it flings about, eventually 
                    careering into Clancy's reddish backside.  See, you can 
                    turn any opportunity into a chance to attack!
Fire Wheel:         Just like the Night Diver, you're fighting an opponent that 
                    is above you.  So once again, it's an optimal weapon for 
                    the airborne foe...what else is nice, though, is that you 
                    get a whopping 11 tosses at max Ninpo (that's almost 3/4 of 
                    his life), it's easy to get ahold of (being one of the last 
                    Ninjitsu Arts to be had in the level), and it tears through 
                    those pesky homing projectiles and still socks Clancy in 
                    the Mean Bean Machine.  You can throw several of these, 
                    dodge the lightning, resume throwing until you run dry, and 
                    then slash him a scant few times to win the match.  Not too 
                    difficult; you should only have to encounter the lighting 
                    2-3 times, if you're playing well.
Fire Dragon:        This Ninjitsu is SUICIDE...but if it's all you have, then 
                    you might as well work with what you've got.  Jump up to a 
                    platform, wait until Clancy flies low enough to be hit, 
                    then jump and hurl as many Fireballs as you can before you 
                    return to dodging lightning bolts.  It's not the safest 
                    maneuver, since jumping down from the platform can cost you 
                    just enough time so that you could very easily be hit...but 
                    hey, you're the one that kept the Fire Dragon.  I mean, 
                    seriously - you could have had the Art of Fire Wheel, which
                    was RIGHT before the boss's room...
Invincible Wheel:   Well, it's not THAT bad...I mean, the Invincible Wheel 
                    protects you from those homing bullets, which is good.  
                    Unfortunately, those bullets only come out if he's not 
                    being attacked, which is the direct antithesis of your 
                    agenda in this fight.  It's kinda handy to have, but I 
                    wouldn't hope for it doing much offensively for you.  It 
                    does nothing versus the Lightning, either, so you're out of 
                    luck there, too.
Vacuum Wave:        Surprisingly good, given the fact that your opponent never 
                    drops to a low-enough level to hit you physically.  Thus, 
                    initiating the Vacuum Wave and running beneath him is 
                    pretty much a guaranteed hit.  Of course, you still have to 
                    dodge the lightning, but with the Vacuum Wave you are at 
                    least assured a few hits while running back and forth.
Sword Upgrade:      Very, very handy weapon.  This allows you to not even 
                    bother with the platforms, simply jumping and slashing a 
                    couple of times from the ground level before dodging those 
                    searing bolts of glory.  No platforms means more time to 
                    worry about where you need to be and when...plus the added 
                    range is ALWAYS nice to have.

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Fire Wheel, by far.  It takes care of the projectiles, 
it's an easy find, it gives you plenty of damage to inflict, and you have 
relatively no aiming to worry about.  It's not a true fire-and-forget...but as 
long as you're not facing the opposite direction, you're pretty well assured 
some damage.  It can be very quickly fired off, giving you several hits before 
you have to begin dodging the lightning...and that's a definite plus, eh?

               ______________________
_______________~H~  Clancy (2nd Form)__________________________________________
               ======================

All right, so you beat up on Clancy...and now, this weird thing in the back 
wall has come to life and decided to try and obliterate you.  Awesome.  As Ryu 
deftly informs the crowd, this is Clancy's real form, and is not one to be 
trifled with.  Resembling an Alien (from the "Alien" movie series), Clancy's 
2nd form has him plastered to the back wall, with only his head and 2 hands 
protruding.  Despite he previous attire, this "true form" is yellowish in hue, 
contrasting the reddish background he exists in.  

His forms of attacking very basic, yet the can be very devastating if you are 
caught off-guard.  Shortly after the fight starts, you'll notice 5 balls of 
energy that float up from the bottom of the screen towards one of his hands.  
It is in your best interest to avoid these things, so that you don't get hit.  
These are grasped within his claw, before he combines them and hurls them as 1 
larger ball.  This ball is sort of a dumbfire projectile, as it haphazardly 
tracks your position; if it fails to hit, then it explodes on the wall/floor in 
a fairly large blast.  This is also good to avoid.  He (it?) then summons 
another group of 5 balls, this time to his opposite hand, and repeats the 
attack.

So what's the best way to tackle this fool?  First off, the 5 energy balls 
always go to the left-side hand.  There are 2 things you can do here - position 
yourself between the 2nd and 3rd orbs so that you won't get hit by them, or 
jump to the right platform and leap the 1 ball that comes close to you.  To 
avoid the large fireball, hop off of the platform and position yourself 
directly below Clancy's head.  As the fireball is released, move closer to the 
hand that threw it - the ball will travel towards your original location, but 
won't be able to correct its trajectory in time and will instead careen into 
the floor.  From here, simply jump back up to the opposite platform, avoiding 
the balls, and repeat the whole mess.

Oh, and by the way - in case you hadn't figured it out, his face is his weak 
spot.  Jump and slash at the fool, man!

Windmill Shuriken:  I have no problems with the Windmill Shuriken during this 
                    fight, personally.  If you position yourself on the 
                    opposite platform, you have to jump over 1 of the balls to 
                    avoid getting hit...however, if you have the Windmill Star, 
                    you can put yourself far enough on the platform so that 
                    you're not in too much danger when jumping (meaning you 
                    will not be in close proximity to the furthest ball).  
Fire Wheel:         Fire Wheel can be very effective here; since the balls 
                    start out spread apart and then slowly join together, this 
                    means you can stand on the floor, where there's a larger 
                    gap between hostile orbs, and rain fire down (up?) upon 
                    your opponent's beleaguered head.  Plus, you're already on
                    the ground, so maneuvering to avoid painful death from his
                    Tracking Fireballs is easier!
Fire Dragon:        Despite the fact that your opponent is above you, you 
                    actually can hold a bit of an advantage with the Fire 
                    Dragon.  See, Clancy 2 only has 1 way of hitting you when 
                    you're above him (i.e., on a wall), and that's with the 
                    tracking fireball.  If you pelt him while Sol's Searing 
                    Orbs (sic) are rising to his opened paw, you have free 
                    damage...and then all you have to do is jump down and avoid 
                    the incoming blast.  Not too shabby, eh?
Invincible Wheel:   Wellsir, holding onto this long enough to use it 
                    is...rather humorous.  Thinking it's going to be effective 
                    is even funnier.  Look - there's a REASON they put these in 
                    certain locations, and that's to help you get through a 
                    troublesome spot, NOT so that you'll have a powerful weapon 
                    to use against the boss.
Vacuum Wave:        This isn't too bad a weapon to have on hand, either.  Much 
                    like the Fire Wheel, you can place yourself on the ground 
                    and use your choice Ninjitsu from below, scarring life off 
                    bit by bit with those waves of death and destruction.  You 
                    don't get as many uses as the Fire Wheel, however...but 
                    hey, it's your call.
Sword Upgrade:      Very handy, VERY handy.  With an upgraded sword in tow, you 
                    can effectively stand between the rising spheres and jump-
                    slash Clancy's head several times, then dodge the blast and 
                    repeat the process...but with more safety.  Heck, with the 
                    extra length, you can get more slashes in (safer), 
                    practically killing him in 1 go!

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Personally, I like using the Fire Dragon against this 
form.  However, it's the final boss of the game that's going to give you 
nightmares, so Ninpo is a valued commodity...and thus, I prefer to not even use 
ANY Ninjitsu on him and stick to stabbing and such.  Also, I like to pick up 
the Ninja Art I'll need against the 3rd form, which means...well, heck, you can 
read it below!

                 ___________________________
_________________~I~  Ancient Security Robot___________________________________
                 ===========================

...ok, so I don't think it's really Clancy, despite what anyone else says.  You 
beat him once, then a strange monster - which Ryu informs us is the "True 
Clancy" - comes out of the back wall, only to be hacked to smitherines by our 
Ninja protagonist.  So what happens then?  My money's on the theory that the 
Ancient Ship of Doom, as a security precaution, released this oversized monster 
of a robot to take care of the onboard threat.  Unfortunately for you, Ryu, 
this means you're going to have to fight another boss.

Keeping in the tradition of the Ninja Gaiden series, this is the 3rd boss in a 
row.  Also in tradition, the first boss floats above you, the 2nd one is 
stationary in the middle of the screen while attacks come from elsewhere, and 
the 3rd is a massive creature in a large all-black arena, and you must destroy 
it's maw to get to the red orb/heart/whatever to actually do damage to it.  The 
Ancient Security Robot is no different, as you'll quickly notice .  It has a 
red orb, which - if you're a fan of the NG series - you'll already know is your 
target.  However, you first have to saw through the large beak-like mouth 
before the Red Orb can be accessed.

Of course, being the final boss in a game such as this, you cannot possibly 
believe that to be an easy task, and it makes sure you work for it.  First off, 
it sports a strange elliptical pattern of movement, making the striking of the 
jawline a task by itself.  This is complicated further by the occasional wave 
of energy that is sent along the floor (of slightly above it, depending on 
where the Robot was in its flight when it released it); you now have to contend 
with slashing at your opponent's mouth, but you also have to concentrate on 
jumping over these waves.  Sure, it's time consumning, but it works (you'd 
better hope you got to the boss in a quick and expedient manner, then!).  
However, even this can be toppled with a little work...and that's where the 
lasers come into play.  He ALSO shoots off small lasers that reflect off of the 
floor, usually passing just overhead...and making it not possible to 
effectively jump at certain locations.  Now you're playing with fire!

Supposing you hit the beak 16 times (that's how many times it takes to break 
it, just the same as if it had a full lifebar of its own).  Great, now what?  
Well, in destroying the beak, you also stop the wave machine and reflective 
lasers from attacking.  This is both good and bad, as the 2 larger laser 
cannons are now put into effect.  You'll notice the large arm-like extension to 
the left of the beak (or former-beak location), with a portion pointed down, 
yes?  Well, this shoots laser blasts straight down, meaning you have to contend 
with the movement of the Robot as well as the ever-changing location of the 
laser shots.  Furthermore, you'll notice a second limb on the right side of the 
"head"...and, as you can guess, this shoots lasers as well.  It fires them 
diagonally down-towards you, leaving a very, very small spot that Ryu can stand 
in.  However, this spot constantly moves with the floating of the ship, too, so 
you have to either stand to the far left or keep moving within this small 
space.  If you want to do any attacking, you're going to have to move to that 
space.

Barring the use of Ninjitsu, how can you handle this beast?  My suggestion is 
this - as soon as the beak is gone, move next to the orb.  There is a brief 
period of time before the lasers start where you can get a few nicks in, so you 
might as well take advantage of it.  Keep moving back and forth within the 
confines that the lasers create, and wait until it is either at the far right 
or far left (when its momentum halts momentarily) and is close enough to the 
ground to slash at.  By doing this, you have effectively paired down its attack 
strategy to walking back and forth and slashing from time to time.  You'll have 
to be progressively more careful, however, as it starts firing lasers at a 
quicker pace.  This means that there will be more little explosions on the 
ground to contend with...and jumping over them is NOT an option, since you'll 
most likely be jumping into another laser by doig so.  

The only constraints you might receive at this point is if you didn't get to 
the boss fast enough to have enough time to defeat him.  Good luck, spud, 
you're probably going to need it.

Windmill Shuriken:  1st Form)  Well, you do have quite a bit of jumping to
                        contend with, which means getting close enough to 
                        slash can be quite difficult.  The Windmill Star allows
                        more focus on staying out of harms way while still 
                        attacking, which is fine by me.  Furthermore, it passes
                        through the beak of the Robot, which allows more than 1
                        hit per Shuriken.  That's pretty nice, if I do say so 
                        myself!
                    2nd Form)  Remember that part where I said it's safe to
                        hang out on the far left, but it isn't possible to
                        attack from there?  Well...I lied.  This Shuriken gives
                        you just enough range to chuck a star at him when he 
                        moves over to the left.  Thus, you have free damage to
                        accrue...I'd suggest taking it.
Fire Wheel:         1st Form)  The Fire Wheel gives you a ranged anti-air use
                        against this beast, which allows you to tag the maw of
                        the Robot without getting close at ALL.  What does this
                        mean for you?  Well, not only does this make jumping 
                        obsolete (except for avoiding those pesky waves), but 
                        you hardly have to even move to the right to peg him!
                        As long as it's not really far away and really low to 
                        the ground, you're probably going to hit it right on
                        the head (sic).
                    2nd Form)  Well, as nice as the Fire Wheel was for Form 1,
                        it really doesn't have much use against this form.  
                        Sure, it gives you the option of hitting him when he's 
                        further above you, but its range is nullified by how 
                        low the orb is to the ground (much lower than the beak 
                        was).  Thus, you'll still have to get in close to hit 
                        the orb, and while it IS nice to not worry as much 
                        about how high it is (still no jumping involved), it 
                        seems a little troublesome to have a weapon that puts 
                        you in the same range as your sword.  It's a marginal 
                        increase over the Dragon Sword, and that just isn't too 
                        good.
Fire Dragon:        1st Form)  Well, when your opponent is on the other side of 
                        the screen, you can either sock the beak or hit the 
                        wave-producing gun below it.  If the machine is low 
                        enough, you can jump and throw out a Fire Dragon shot 
                        or two and take a couple of hits off of the 
                        Robot...however, there aren't any walls in this room, 
                        so jumping is the only way you're going to get the 
                        necessary vertical to use the Fire Dragon.  That's not 
                        too good for you, mate.
                    2nd Form)  Uh...well, if you want to be close enough to use 
                        the Fire Dragon, then you're probably going to have to 
                        be right underneath the left-side Laser Turret...AND 
                        you have to be jumping to make it connect.  That's, 
                        like, 3 or 4 strikes out, so you shouldn't even bother 
                        with this.
Invincible Wheel:   You know, I'm just going to pretend that you didn't get 
                    this.  La la la, I can't hear you, you didn't just tell me 
                    that you held onto the Invincible Wheel this long AND 
                    expect to use it in these boss battles...
Vacuum Wave:        1st Form)  You know, I know that the Vacuum Wave art has
                        minimal horizontal range...but do you REALLY want to be 
                        using this against the Ancient Security Robot?  I hope 
                        not.  Grab something else, PLEASE.
                    2nd Form)  WORTHLESS.  Use your sword, do NOT use the 
                        Vacuum Wave art.  I don't care about the concept of 
                        "Well, this is what I have, so how do I use it?"  How 
                        do you use it?  Die, and THIS time grab a better 
                        Ninjitsu before entering the room.  Crikey, there's a 
                        Windmill Shuriken and the Fire Wheel arts just before 
                        you enter this fight, so why did you keep ahold of the 
                        Vacuum Wave art?  Man, this is like taking the 
                        Invincible Wheel into the fight!
Sword Upgrade:      1st Form)  As per usual, having more range means you don't
                        have to get as close to get your whacks in.  For a boss
                        that has little reflecty-lasers that are usually close 
                        to the very thing you're trying to hit, that means you
                        don't have to contend with such adversity as often.
                        That's a good thing, kiddies.
                    2nd Form)  This is one of the few instances where having 
                        the Sword Upgrade is nice...but not entirely necessary 
                        (not that it matters that much; if you have it for the 
                        first form, you'll have it for the second).  Since 
                        you're maneuvering in a small laser-free zone, you'll 
                        want to have a little more range in hitting the Orb.  
                        Your emphasis will probably be on moving between the 
                        lasers and attacking when it stops moving, though, 
                        where that much more distance is less of an issue; 
                        thus, the upgrade is nice but not entirely necessary 
                        (as I already said...great, I'm ALREADY becoming 
                        redundant).

Preferred Ninjitsu:  Wellsir, it's a bit of a tie as to which art I like to 
use...the Windmill Shuriken makes the first form easier to swallow, while the 
Fire Wheel makes handling the 2nd form a bit easier as well.  It's a toss-up, 
I'd say...grab the one that you think will help you against the harder boss 
form, and go to work!
 

============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================
     ----------------------------VI:  Various----------------------------
============================== Ninja Gaiden III ===============================

If it don't fit nowhere else, then here it is!

 ___________________________________
_~A~  Eagles, Flags, Drones, and You___________________________________________
 ===================================

There have been changes through the Ninja Gaiden series, some to improve upon 
the way the games were constructed (to remove frustrating glitches and the 
like) and others simply to make programming easier.  Here's a brief coverage of 
some of those changes.

~~~#1 - The Flag "Glitch"~~~
  The Flag Glitch was one of the more frustrating aspects of Ninja Gaiden, 
making one of the sections of the game nigh-impossible.  Although not a true 
glitch and rather a simple programming error, it has become the bane of many a 
gamer's existance (this gamer included).  To save room in the programming, 
Tecmo decided to forego the idea of writing in the exact locations of each 
monster and have a pre-existing enemy in each location; instead, they set up 
"flags" so that when you reached a particular section, the programming would 
automatically locate the specific enemy that had been "flagged" for that area 
and immediately write it in.  Thus, if you travelled far enough into Stage 1 of 
NG III, you'd hit a point where the game had flagged "Spider Drone - Top of 
Bar" (in layman's terms), and the game would write in that enemy at that 
location.

  So where does the "glitch" come into play?  Well, if you were to scroll 
the screen backwards (i.e., backpedal to a previous platform, area, whatever) 
and then return a particular section, the same enemy would return anew.  This 
could be used to your advantage, but more often than not the game would become 
increasingly difficult to handle.  You had to deal with the enemies you faced 
in the locations that you faced them, instead of being able to return to a 
safer platform to do battle with them.  If you did, then the enemies would 
return all over again, and you'd be back at square one.

  There was a section in Ninja Gaiden I where you had to make a series of 
crucial jumps to progress to the last section of the game.  However, 2 eagles 
would appear to impede your jumping, as well as an enemy on one of the small 
jumps.  To handle the eagles, you might return to a previous platform and slice 
them away from the safety of this location...but returning to these jumps would 
cause the same eagles to return.  In order to deal with them, you either had to 
cause the increasing speed of their flight patterns to send them offscreen (see 
#2) or simply try to deal with them in midair.  This is a very, very dangerous 
maneuver, as simply getting hit would cause Ryu to recoil and fall to his 
death.  Very difficult.

  In order for Ryu to effectively pass these enemies, he could try a variety of 
tactics...however, the most effective tactic I ever saw was forcing the enemy 
on the platform to become "eluded" by scrolling far enough for him to appear, 
but not far enough for the entire platform to materialize.  By doing so, he 
would continue to walk as if the platform kept going, and would stroll right 
off of the stage - and, since the screen had scrolled far enough over that his 
flag had already been set off, he would not reappear again.  This left only the 
jump and the eagles to contend with, allowing you to deal with the situation 
with 1 less obstacle.  It's using the "Flag" program against the computer, and
incorporated a rather effective flaw in the system to your advantage.  Hey, I
think this would make a good segue!

~~~#2 - "Eluding" your Enemies~~~
  Something to keep in mind about enemies that follow "seeking" patterns in 
this game is that their location and travelling speed is relative to where Ryu 
is onscreen; that is to say, they "hunt" Ryu to a certain degree, making 
mathematical changes in their flight patterns to accomodate your movement.  
I'll use the Eagles from Ninja Gaiden I as an example (although similar enemies 
in NGIII include the Oversized Wasps in Stage 2 and the 'Copter-drones in 
latter stages):

   Eagles usually appear above or below you, and gain speed as they fly closer 
and closer towards you.  The further the eagle starts away from you, the more 
speed  they gain until they crash into you; however, they cannot make vertical 
changes as rapidly as they can horizontal, which means if you were to jump one 
after it had gained enough speed, it would sail underneath you; furthermore, if 
you were to jump and move in the opposite direction it was travelling, you 
could scroll the screen and cause the nuisance to sail offscreen...and 
effectively be removed from the game (NGIII was not programmed to "remember" 
enemies and their locations, instead using flags set up to simply create new 
enemies when the scrolled screen hits a certain point).  This was known as 
"eluding" an enemy, a term which I believe was first used by Jeff Rovin (of 
"How to Win at Nintendo Games" infamy) for the Mega Man games.  If I'm wrong 
about this, then someone please inform me of the correct origin of this 
particular term (yes, I know the words "Elude" and "Elusion" have been around 
longer than HtWaNG, I'm talking about the inclusion of such words into video 
game terminology).

  Now, this is all fine and good as long as your opponent is travelling fast 
enough so that it cannot change its course in time.  In quite a few areas, you 
will find eagles/drones/bugs that do not start quite so far off, and thus can 
home in on you easily.  It is then in your best interest to positing them so 
that they do not come directly above/below you, and instead have to meet you on 
a horizontal path; this allows you to slice through them with your sword 
without too much fuss.  Not too bad, eh?

  There are other enemies that follow a similar path, following Transversal 
wave of movement that attempts to place the center of the wave on a horizontal 
plane with Ryu.  These things, such as the White Wave-Floater in Stage 1, are 
easy to terminate - you can either wait until it's close enough to slash (no 
biggie), or you can change Ryu's horizontal plane so that it has to attempt to 
keep up.  Now, the trick here is to move in the opposite direction that it is 
headed, meaning that when it flies up to the crest of the wave, drop a level 
(or jump when it falls to the trough).  If you time it incorrectly - namely, 
jumping when it crests - then it won't have to move, as it has already matched 
your level.  Increasing the distance it must cover can cause the amplitude of 
the wave to surpass the length necessary for it to leave the screen - and thus, 
in correcting its movement, the Floater flies right offscreen, removing it from 
your worries.  In a couple sections of the game, such as a portion of Stage 2 
(the vertical section prior to the lava rise), this happens almost 
automatically - you'll witness a Floater appear as you drop, practically 
falling off of the stage just to keep up with your rapid pace of decent.  See, 
math can help you play video games!

   _____________________
___~B~  Revision History_______________________________________________________
   =====================

10-14-02:  I sat down and started this FAQ today.  Let's see just how quickly I 
           can get this thing done, eh?  It shouldn't be too difficult to write 
           a FAQ up for this game...right?
04-18-03:  After losing a good portion of the guide to due a saving failure, I
           have restarted this project.  Today, I completed the boss section,
           did the first stage walkthrough, and filled in the "Eagles, Flags,
           Drones, and You" section.  It's more technical than anything, but I
           find it important to include; plus, it balances out the cheesy ASCII
           (filler) that I included!  Please don't lynch me for indulging 
           myself just this one, fellow FAQ writers, please?  C'mon, you know
           how I am...I generally loath the stuff!  Let me have my fun!
04-19-03:  Well, I'm ALMOST finished...I just have to round out Stage 7's 
           walkthrough and I'll have a completed guide!  Yay!
04-25-03:  I took a little break from working on the guide, so that I could
           focus on a few other matters (namely trying to get my car fixed)...
           but now that those are taken care of, I returned to the guide and 
           finished it!  Yay!  Enjoy, folks!

   ___________
___~B~  Thanks_________________________________________________________________
   ===========

~~CJayC (CJayC@gamefaqs.com, www.gamefaqs.com) for putting this FAQ up.

~~Al Amaloo (www.gamewinners.com) for being such a cool guy, and having a 
great site.

~~Vertsk8pro@hotmail.com for giving me a heart attack with your childish "I 
stole your FAQ and sold it with my name on it" antics.  Because of that, I 
now do dozens of things to make sure people don't steal my work.  If they 
do, I know exactly what to look for to see if they took MY work or not.

~~Dungeons and Dragons' for the use of a few minor notes.  Hey man, I wanted to 
mix up certain descriptions, so rather than saying "ball" for the millionth 
time, I opted to list a surprisingly accurate D&D spell (Sol's Searing Orb) 
instead.  I am not taking credit for this phrase; instead, I am giving due 
credit to the creators of the moniker.  I believe I may have also said "Bolt of 
Glory" somewhere in this guide...that's not mine, either.

~~Uh...I can't exactly thank God for the role he's taken in my life, because 
that would seem like I'm trying to force my religious opinions on someone 
else (which I'm not).  Therefore, I'd like to thank "Murray" for the role 
he's taken in my life (Murray, you know who you are).

~~The music I listened to while writing this guide was NOT from Ninja Gaiden 3.
  No, I opted to listen to a variety of tracks from the Castlevania series, 
  most prominently Super Castlevania IV and Symphony of the Night.  Both had
  excellent music, and are extremely great games in their own right(s).  I'd 
  highly suggest checking them out if you haven't already.

~~HUGE thanks go out to http://www.geocities.com/lsteele42/.  This guy has the
  endings of various video games, full of screen captures and such, which makes
  for good reading (and nostalgia).  However, he also has all 3 of the Ninja
  Gaiden games fully reproduced through screenshots, retelling each plot point
  and showing brief snippets of stages and bosses.  Since I wanted to remember 
  the exact plot for certain stages, but didn't feel like going through this 
  game over and over, this made for a very easy, very handy refresher.  Rock!

     ______________
_____~C~  NO THANKS____________________________________________________________
     ==============

If you write me asking for help with the game, I'll send you a link to my 
FAQ.  If you ask for specific help, I'll try to aid you.  However, if you 
ask me about something that is already covered in the FAQ, I will simply 
refer you to the FAQ again.  I wrote the FAQ so that your questions would be 
answered here, not so I could repeat that FAQ bit by bit through e-mail for 
the next few years.  If you need clarification about something in the FAQ, 
ask about it - but don't ask me to repeat anything.


===============================================================================
                                    End FAQ
===============================================================================

The following are sites that can NOT use my work.  If you see these sites using
ANY of my FAQs, please e-mail me ASAP.  Each of these websites are sites that
have plagiarised myself or others in the past, or simply taken our work(s)
without our prior permission.  Since they do not have enough respect for the
authors (or an ignorance of the law), I am expressly forbidding them from using
my work.  I will not promote such sites that partake in these actions.

   911 Codes                     http://911codes.com
   9 Lives                       http://www.9lives.ru/eng/
   Bean's PlayStation Dimension  http://www.bean.dk/psx/index.htm
   Cheat Code Central            http://www.cheatcc.com
   Cheat Index                   http://cheatindex.com
   Cheat Matrix                  http://cheatmatrix.com
   Cheat Search                  http://cheatsearch.com
   Cheatstop                     http://www.panstudio.com/cheatstop/
   CNET Gamecenter               http://games.netscape.com/Faqs/
   Console Domain                http://www.consoledomain.co.uk
   Dirty Little Helper           http://dlh.net
   Dark Station                  http://www.darkstation.com/
   Dreamland                     http://kirby.pokep.net
   Games Domain                  http://www.gamesdomain.com
   Game Express                  http://www.gameexpress.com
   Games Over                    http://www.gamesover.com/
   Mega Games                    http://www.megagames.com
   Square Haven                  http://www.square-haven.net
   Ultimate System               http://www.flatbedexpress.com
   VideoGaming.net               http://www.videogaming.net/
   Cheats.de                     http://www.cheats.de

(Taken from Jim "Red Phoenix" Chamberlin's FAQ Theft Guide, as well as added
onto.)

As I stated above, if you want to use one of my guides, I ask that you e-mail
me to gain my permission first.  I like to keep track of which sites use my
work, so I know where to send the updates, and it's a little difficult to keep
you updated if you don't e-mail me.


This Document Copyright Reverend Eric "Vegita" Johnson, April 2003