Review by ManiacOVG

"One Funny Little Ninja"

"One Funny Little Ninja"

In this PS2 title "I-Ninja", Ninja is a trying to save his world from Emperor O-Dor and his Ranks, which are the main enemies. As Ninja, you fight through 6 different sub-worlds, with graphics and challenges similar to Sly Cooper. Ninja shows much sarcasm and interesting conversation all while his Sensei, named Sensei, guides him through his challenges and training. Let's begin, shall we?

Story 7/10
The opening cutscene shows off Ninja's skills, slicing enemies in to bits, and then facing off with a dragon. He instantly kills it, and then out of the its mouth, a rage stone, a red gem with great power, appears. Against his Sensei's words, Ninja wields the stone, not realizing it's true power. In his confusion, he ends up killing Sensei...but worry not, his ghost remains to train him as he searches throughout the world for more rage stones, fighting Emperor O-Dor and his forces along the way. The worlds themselves seem to all be close by, linking themselves through doors, and although they are all quite different, they share the same type of objectives, leaving the story to revolve around Ninja's training and only a simple bit on rage stones and their powers.

Gameplay 8/10
I found the combat system to be quite interesting and fun. You use your sword to battle ranks, using the square and circle buttons. As you fight and collect rage stones after each boss, you will be able to use Rage Abilities. There is one Rage Ability per stone, resulting in 4 abilities. These abilities vary between offensive capabilities with giant shurikens, or healing yourself in your time of need. To use these abilities, you must gain rage. To increase rage, you can simply hit enemies, break boxes and barrels, or get hit yourself, which gives you the most rage. Being that there is one Rage Ability per world, you will be able to keep up with the slightly increasing difficulty along the way. Along with your normal walking and sword attacks, you'll be using shurikens, darts, giant balls you ride on(which are sometimes used for bowling), giant robots, turrets, and even a submarine, leaving there to be quite a variety of weapons. Most portals contain a main mission, but along with that, you can choose to try different challenges, such as Capture the Red Coinage, where you find 10 special coinage in the whole stage, Hunt the Enemies, where beat up as many enemies in the counter, or Beat the Clock, which is your basic speed trial. Along with that, there will be one special challenge for a guardian in each world, resulting in a bit of a change up on what you're used to. I found that the way the challenge system worked was very similar to Sly Cooper, while still making itself unique. You'll be able to use half-pipes, chain swings, and run on walls throughout the game, and how you master those abilities will decide how well you'll make it through the game. These capabilities are quite simple, however, leaving even the newest of gamers in good hands. Not to mention, boss battles will always be fun to get into, and although you may need a second try, it's only because the game varies how the boss is to be beaten, making it actually fun to want to go through the bosses multiple times.

Sound 8/10
I only give this an 8 because there's nothing really special. Of course, there's some music that boosts your interest in these ninja missions, and the boss music is often fun and fits the theme. Nothing really wrong with it, either, so just enjoy.

Graphics 9/10
You'll be seeing a lot of those cell-shaded graphics you saw in Sly Cooper, making it a cartoony type of 3-D. The in-game graphics are clear and nothing glitchy, either, making it pretty decent. The cinematics themselves aren't really special, nor are they that much of a step up from the game graphics themselves, but leave them to be enjoyable still.

Rent or Buy
Being that this game is more for the child and younger audience, anyone can have their little fun with this. However, for more serious gamers, I'd just go with renting, as replay value isn't much and would revolve around collections and completing repetitive missions that can easily get boring. If you're looking for a good laugh and a basic sword playing game, though, you should definitely check out I-Ninja for the PS2.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 03/22/05, Updated 07/16/07

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