This edition of Nostalgia Game Review takes a look at Ninja Gaiden for the NES. A game made by Tecmo (who's also known for the Tecmo Bowl series, unsurprisingly) in October 1988, Ninja Gaiden was the first of a trilogy for the NES, which saw a 16-bit re-release for the SNES. In fact, Ninja Gaiden was also an arcade game, even seeing an arcade adaption for the Atari Lynx. This game is a favorite of Twitch streamer Protonjon's, who has even LP'ed the series on his YouTube channel.
Ninja Gaiden features a ninja named Ryu Hayabusa, who's out to get vengeance for his murdered father. Along the way, Hayabusa learns that an evil entity named the "Jaquio" is plotting to take over the world by releasing a ancient demon's power contained within two statues. Therefore, Ryu must go through 20 stages and six acts to stop the "Jaquio". The game plays like Castlevania (the original) in that you use sub-weapons and have magic to use those weapons. These sub-weapons include a shuriken and a windmill attack.
Overall, this game has good replay value. The controls on the game may feel hard to get used to at times. However, playing the game enough will get you settled in, with the controls practically becoming easy to use. Ninja Gaiden is also notorious for its hard difficulty. That's not a problem. The problem is when you're constantly getting attacked by pestering BIRDS. The worst part is that these birds are one of the enemies in the game that deal the most damage.
What Ninja Gaiden is memorable for is its storytelling. Using cutscenes in a anime style, Ninja Gaiden does a terrific job intertwining its story into the game. Ryu meets many characters on his quest to avenge his father, adding intrigue to the game. The story has many swerves, ultimately leading you to the "Jaquio". Ninja Gaiden was one of the first video games to incorporate this into their game.
While Ninja Gaiden may be a difficult game to master at first, it is a fun challenge for anyone looking for a new adventure. Definitely one of the more underrated NES platformers, Ninja Gaiden is definitely worth your time. Check out Ninja Gaiden if you have the time!
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