Final verdict: C
Final playtime: 43 hours
Okay, look. Fuck you, fuck you too, and you, and everybody else. Not you though. Not you. Ninja Gaiden 3 has been getting an absurd amount of hate… but for all the WRONG reasons. So after playing the game twice and beating it on Master Ninja I bring to you the truth. I’m here to tell you what’s wrong with the game and what is not.
So let’s start with what imbeciles like this one say is supposedly wrong with the game. Before that though, I’d like to sincerely apologize for linking to such a god awful website. I’m only doing it for educational purposes. Now, putting aside the fact that that shitmonger’s review sounds just like every other tired, generic, professional review full of buzz-words, stock screenshots, and devoid of any meaningful content, something interesting is immediately apparent: this asshole doesn’t REALLY understand what is bad about this game. He has NO FUCKING CLUE. It’s as if he arbitrarily wanted to write a scathing review saying how much he hated the game but couldn’t think up any good reasons so he decided to make shit up and talk about shit that isn’t even important. I guess maybe IGN has been criticized for inflating scores on big-name games so they really wanted to give one an absurdly low score and they felt that NG3 was a relatively safe game to hate on without losing connections and advertising revenue?
First of all, isn’t it funny how out of the three reasons he gives for the game being bad, two of them are completely fucking superfluous? “Misguided narrative focus”? Are you TRYING to make me laugh here? Guess what, douche, if you don’t want to hear the story just pause and choose to skip the god damn scene. Who gives a shit? What an empty bullshit reason to even list. In fact, he devotes like five fucking paragraphs to bitch about the story. Now, I’m all for talking about unimportant shit that doesn’t have anything to do with the review, but this dumbass clearly thinks that this constitutes a valid reason to hate on the game. So you might be asking “Well, how IS the story?” and my answer to that is WHO GIVES A SHIT. I can summarize the previous Ninja Gaidens’ stories with just a few words: boobs, boobs, demon boobs, some more boobs. The story is superfluous. Either watch it or skip it, doesn’t make a difference.
Second, “awful pacing”? Is that SERIOUSLY your other complaint? Holy shit, okay. This fagmaster tries to make it seem like the breaks between the action where Ryu slows down and clutches his infected arm interfere so much with the game as to be worth mentioning as one of the reasons the game is bad. The funny thing is, Ninja Gaiden 3 is actually MORE streamlined than its predecessors and almost any other action game. There is absolutely zero exploration, puzzles, or any of the pointless stuff that breaks up the action in other games. This game is seriously just battle after battle after battle. Let me make it clear that I’m not bitching about exploration or puzzles in action games. They are pointless but it’s not a big deal either. It’s simply a break between getting from battle A to battle B. You know how some games like DMC3 have some puzzles or running around parts that are totally pointless and you’re just getting through them quick so you can get to the next battle because you‘ve already played the game 6 times? Whatever, it’s not a big deal. Ninja Gaiden 3’s arm-clutching parts are equivalent to these things. Do they add anything to the game? No, but neither do puzzles in other action games. If anything these parts in NG3 take away less time.
Moving on, okay, the next reason he gives for the game being bad is that… it’s not difficult? The enemies are harmless?! WHAT. No, seriously, WHAT. This isn’t just hilariously incorrect anymore, it’s blatant fraudulence. Let me guess, this dipshit only played the game once on Normal and then ran off to write his vapid review like a good little professional reviewer? What a joke. He probably never even touched Hard. And he sure as HELL never touched Master Ninja. In fact, I’m completely sure that he never played on anything other than pussy mode. How am I so sure, you ask? Because he specifically states that at the end he had 2110 kills. Do you know how many kills I had at the end of Master Ninja? 7192. Where are the other 5000 enemies, mother fucker? WHERE ARE THEY? Yeah that’s what I thought. Bitch. Well, unlike this fraudulent cunt I did beat Master Ninja and I can tell you that this game is NOT easy. At this point you might be thinking “Durr hurr maybe you just suck!” and if you did, congratulations, you’re a retard. In fact there are some battles on Master Ninja that are borderline ridiculous. One part where I had to fight 20 ninjas all going fucking nuts on me at the same time while 12 niggers on the rooftops were shooting rockets nonstop at me. I try to fight the ninjas? Get raped by nonstop rockets. I try to snipe the rocket guys? Get insta-killed by ninjas. Died almost 50 times on that. Another part has you fighting 20 ninjas spamming shit on you at once, rockets being fired at you, relentless dogs lunging at you, shurikens being spammed at you nonstop from offscreen. Enemies are harmless? Fuck YOU. It’s to the point where you can’t even stop to swing your sword even ONCE because you instantly get raped if there’s somebody nearby or stunned by a shuriken. Hell, even if you’re just running and dodging nonstop a random shuriken here and there will STILL get you, let alone if you stop for a moment. Sometimes you’ll even get sniped or uppercutted right out of the air when you’re air comboing another enemy. Enemies are relentless and spam everything they have on you all at the same time including grabs that take off half your health. Easy my ASS. I’m done talking about this dumbass’s review.
No, trust me, this game is quite difficult. The problem isn’t lack of difficulty but rather that so much of it comes from bullshit sources. Primarily, this game is different in that you can’t dodge cancel out of most attacks or combos, meaning that you have to wait for the animation to end before you can even dodge at all. Meaning that even if you see an attack coming, if you’re in the middle of an attack animation you might not be able to avoid it! This is especially a problem because there are SO MANY enemies, that you can be attacking one but the other 5 behind you will probably ass rape you while your pants are down. But hell, sometimes even the very SAME enemy that you’re attacking might not get stunned by your attacks and then grab you for half of your health while you can’t do anything about it because you were in the middle of hitting him. This simple fact greatly influences the overall gameplay, and not in a good way, because it basically forces you to be really niggardly and cheesy with your offense. Most attacks and combos are too unsafe and risky, making hit-and-run tactics and only relying on a very limited amount of moves the most effective if you don’t want to make all that grab spam unavoidable.
Which brings me to my second problem, which is that a lot of times some damage feels like it can‘t be reliably dodged. This is most egregious in the times where an enemy grabs you RIGHT as you finish the killing animation on another dude or a similar sort of animation where you’re vulnerable for a split second after it finishes. But it’s also apparent for example with stuff like helicopter rockets or shuriken spam, which feel like no matter how much you dodge you’ll still get hit sometimes. Even when you’re in the middle of comboing a dude in the air, where you should theoretically be safe because it’s not like you can do anything to avoid damage in that situation, that shuriken spam will hit you and stun you, bringing you back down to earth, maybe into the waiting arms of another grab spamming enemy, if you’re especially unlucky. And that’s the thing, it feels like sometimes whether or not you get hit by stuff like this comes down to luck. Now don’t get me wrong, that’s not to say that there isn’t skill involved in other aspects, because it definitely still is about skill overall.
The problem becomes most obvious in that in some battles enemies will be acting “normally”, but then in other specific battles, the same type of enemy will have blatantly been programmed to just spam their cheapest shit (grabs, attack strings that can’t be stopped until they end, shurikens) nonstop at every opportunity. Which is when what I said about hit-and-run tactics becomes particularly apt, because you end up having to just run/dodge around the place, with a parade of ninjas running after you and opportunistically izuna dropping a straggler, then quickly going back to running around and repeating. It also becomes most evident when you realize that, ironically, bosses in this game are actually easier than battles against regular enemies. Why? Because bosses don’t have cheap shit.
The new mechanic in Ninja Gaiden 3 is the addition of Steel on Bone attacks. I guess this is meant as the successor to Ultimate Technique spam, which no longer exists in this game (you can still use the UT, you just can’t spam it over and over to one-hit kill 100 enemies in a row anymore). The way Steel on Bone works is that, as an enemy’s health is decreased, there comes a point where it becomes possible to use an SoB on him. The method to initiate the SoB is semi-random (there are things you can do that have a high rate of initiating it, depending on the enemy), and when you do, it kills the enemy in one hit, and if there are other enemies nearby that also satisfy the requirements for SoB, you can chain the SoB on multiple enemies to clear out waves very fast. I suspect that the developers expect you to be using SoBs, and that’s why there are so god damn MANY enemies in the game, but unfortunately in Master Ninja a lot of the time it feels too risky to go for.
Speaking of too many enemies, another problem with the game (which was also present in Ninja Gaiden 2), is that in Master Ninja it throws SO many enemies at your ass that the game can’t handle the load and starts lagging. It just grinds down to half speed or something, which is annoying and makes you have to adjust your timing on things. Another technical problem which was also present in Ninja Gaiden 2 is enemies glitching. Granted, it doesn’t happen often and overall the game is more stable than NG2 was, but there was a memorable part where I got through 3 ridiculous tough battles, and then the boss after that is just all like “You’ll never get me alive!” and decides to glitch out up to the ceiling and get stuck. He wasn’t programmed to die unless he was on the ground, so I had to reset and do all the battles all over again. The good news is that the second time around I did them all super fast and barely died, which lends proof to my previous statement that despite all the horse shit overall the game is still about skill.
I also think that the game was probably rushed, because of the fact that it shipped with only one weapon (the dragon sword) and weapons have been steadily added as DLC as time goes on. The claws got added in about halfway through me playing the game, and the eclipse scythe got added in right at the tail end of my playthrough so I didn’t get much chance to use it, but from what little I did it seemed crazy strong and would have made the game significantly easier.
Going back to what I said before about people hating this game for the wrong reasons, some people miss the absolute lack of exploration in NG3, as well as the lack of collectibles, customization, currency and buying stuff from the store. They say the game feels too bare bones without all this, but frankly, action games have never been about this, this stuff was always just fluff, so I don’t particularly care.
On the other hand, a good feature in Ninja Gaiden 3 is that items no longer exist. Obviously, anybody who isn’t a complete fucking pussy never used items, and just taking them away entirely is the clear and logical progression of this. Even if I never used items in DMC or Bayonetta or Ninja Gaiden, it always pissed me off just knowing that they were there, so I applaud this design choice. Recovery orbs and other such drops from enemies also no longer exist. Now the only way to recover your health is by filling up your ninpo bar by doing combos and killing enemies.
Anyway, hopefully I gave you some much needed insight on Ninja Gaiden 3. The game has problems, but it’s not really deserving of the mind boggling amount of hatred it has gotten, and certainly not for the reasons that idiots tend to give. Should you buy the game? Eh… if you‘re interested, I guess it’s not so bad.
Final Verdict: C
Final Playtime: 43 hours