Review by Tarixia
Mayham, Quick Slaughter, and all the right things
While the story is there, for many who haven't played the first game they wont understand or be able to follow very well. Those who have played the game will see familiar places and hints to the first game. The story itself is a little lax, Team Ninja as always leaves just enough story to keep the player knowing what to do next... or at least where they're headed next. Honestly though, the Story is so much Swiss cheese I could fly a squadron of B52 Bombers through it in wing formation and never hit a single side. Those players who are looking for a story need to look elsewhere, this game is all about the 3 A's. Action, Action and more Addiction.
Where do I start? They're easy to learn and Master. From wall running, to bouncing back and forth off enemies heads. It's all simple and quick to learn. Counter attacks are relatively easy to perform, not needing the timing of games like Onimusha, but are still a little rough if you mistime the counter attack. Combo's are also really easy to string together, as long as you can remember the combination to them. Depending on the weapon of your choice, the controls change up a little in the form of basic moves. An example is the Dragon Sword's Jump + Strong attack, you actually dash to the enemy setting them up for a beat down. But if you switch to Dragon's Claw and Tiger Tooth, your Jump + strong attack is a spinning slash in mid air. So plan accordingly when choosing your weapon.
Honestly, the graphics in the first game were a lot better. That's not to say that this game doesn't have beautiful graphics. But I think they paid more attention to the gore and blood then they did the characters themselves. Spider Ninja's, no matter their style, seem to look the same but with new skins. Demons have the same problem, they just got new skins and are only about 4-5 different kinds, but if you add in new skins, there's a lot more but rarely do attack patterns change. The Cut-Scenes, Stages and Scenery are all breath taking and beautiful, though often times I'm curious how they would look if more attention was paid to the characters in them.
SOUND EFFECTS/MUSIC: 10/10
Ahh the music is delicious and meant to make your blood pump and adrenaline rush down your body with a flood of bloodshed and gore thrown into the mix. As I said with Graphic's, Team Ninja focused A LOT on the Gore and Blood shed, so much so that when Ryu cleans off his sword with a flick of his wrist, you actually HEAR the blood splattering on the ground. There's no way they could have done better except in one form. MORE Music. Some of the Music for combat seems to always be the same and you get accustomed to it. Unlike Devil may Cry were they had varied music for combat, this one only has one or two themes.
VOICE ACTORS: 9/10
Well, when you do get to story sections, the Voice acting isn't bad at all. The script is what destroys the perfect 10. The characters get such a short amount of Dialogue that you hardly get immersed into the voice actors at all. That's about all I can say on the voices.
GAME PLAY: 10/10
Ahh, Ninja Gaiden's bread and butter. The game play is beautiful, combined with easy to handle controls, a wonderful new system for Obliteration and Ultimate Technique's, the game just blows through everything you could wish for in an Action game. The only downfall to this game is that stages are VERY straight foreword. There's no exploration at all for half of the game, and there's only one stage in the game that offers a kind of 'exploration' but there's a serious problem with it. I wont say what because of possible spoilers. However, the blending of fast paced combat, insane Ninja moves, and powerful destructive techniques, this game is beautiful.
As I've said, the Story is it's only MAJOR flaw for those who WANT a Story. All others will love the game simply for it's fast paced action. I think it's only serious problem that effects many people more then the Story, the lack of unlockable things. The recording feature is a great thing, I personally have one in Stage 10 that I love for the high combo I managed to score (1,788 hits before I got hit >.< ). You get two new costumes, but otherwise that's about it. The game has a little lag in two stages, but is really bad in one stage at one spot. It's not crippling, but it slows down the game a lot. Enjoy folks, I know I am. =^^=
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Product Release: Ninja Gaiden II (US, 06/03/08)
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