Saturday, March 7, 2020

Eric Vs. 365 - Day 251 - Ninja Gaiden II

Ninja Gaiden II is a bloody gory gorgeous looking game with great level design and awesome combat. For the first level. Then you play the rest of the game and it's mostly an ugly unbalanced mess. Sorry nerds, but Ninja Gaiden II kinda sucks. Read more and watch gameplay here.

Was that opening paragraph too harsh? No. No it wasn't. Ninja Gaiden II has a crazy reputation for being one of the best action games of all time and everyone loves it because Itagaki and Team Ninja didn't give a shit and gave fans the most ball busting hardcore action game ever, but it isn't fun. 

There is no rhyme or reason for enemy placement other than to screw the player over at the worst possible moments. There is no flow or rhythm to it because there is inevitably a straggler enemy or 3 that you didn't know existed who stab you in the back and ruin your beautiful combo. Or there are a-holes just off camera shooting arrows at you. Or rockets. Or whatever. Or there are dumb ass floating ghost fish that screw you over. There's ALWAYS something. People said the enemy placements in Dark Souls II were bad, well, Ninja Gaiden II did it first.

I know, you're just going to use that old chestnut of "git gud" and then I'll appreciate the game more, but screw that. Or playing the game enough so you memorize enemy placements and then you don't constantly get screwed over. I ain't got time for that! 

The frustrating thing for me about Ninja Gaiden II is that it starts off so freaking amazing. The first level in a Tokyo high rise is awesome. The graphics are insanely good (especially on Xbox One X) and everything feels perfect. The gameplay is fast and furious and fun and it all just feels so damn good. Then the rest of the game is an ugly mess that gets increasingly more unbalanced the further you get. And did I mention that most of the rest of the game is freaking ugly? Because it's freaking ugly compared to that first level.

I have to admit, though, that I never really "got" Ninja Gaiden or other character action games so maybe it's my fault and I just can't appreciate Ninja Gaiden II or others (I freaking hate pretty much every Devil May Cry, by the way). Whatevers.