Ninja Gaiden Trilogy


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Ninja Gaiden Trilogy

Ninja Gaiden Trilogy (NINJA 外伝) is a series of action video games by Tecmo featuring the ninja Ryu Hayabusa as its protagonist. The series was originally known as Ninja Ryukenden (忍者龍剣伝, Ninja Ryūkenden, “Legend of the Ninja Dragon Sword”) in Japan. The word “gaiden” in the North American Ninja Gaiden title means “side story” in Japanese. The original arcade version, first two Nintendo Entertainment System games and Game Boy game were released as Shadow Warriors in PAL regions. As of 2008, the series has shipped over 7.7 million copies.[n 1]

The series gained popularity on the NES for its tight action-platform gameplay, catchy music and, according to G4’s X-Play, for being the first console game to have the story presented in cinematic cutscenes. The 8-bit trilogy was enhanced for the 16-bit Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1995. Sega released two Ninja Gaiden games for the Game Gear and Master System, the latter only for PAL regions. The original series’ setting of said universe is a retro-futuristic version of the 1980s. A new game, titled Ninja Gaiden, was released in 2004 as a 3D action game on the Xbox, developed by Team Ninja, the makers of Dead or Alive. The Ninja Gaiden franchise is known for its high degree of difficulty, particularly the original NES version and the Xbox revival.[3]

According to Eurogamer, the gameplay of the Strider arcade franchise was a vital influence on the modern incarnation of the Ninja Gaiden franchise.[4]

Arcade game

Main article: Ninja Gaiden (arcade game)

The arcade version of Ninja Gaiden (released in 1988, in Japan, North America, and Europe)[5] was a Double Dragon-style beat ’em up, in which the player controls a nameless blue ninja (red for a second player) as he travels to various regions of the United States, to defeat an evil cult led by a descendant of Nostradamus, who is trying to fulfill his ancestor’s prophecy of the rise of an evil king in 1999. The player has a variety of techniques, such as a flying neck throw and a backflip.[6] The player can obtain power-ups by throwing characters into background objects, such as street lights and dumpsters. The player fights primarily with their bare hands, although a sword can be used for a limited time as a power-up; they can use overhead environmental objects as a prop from which he can deliver more powerful kicking attacks. Although the game takes place in different environments, there are primarily only five kinds of enemies, all of which appear in every level (although some levels have extra enemy types). The game is remembered for its infamous continue screen, where the player character is tied to the ground underneath a descending circular saw.[7]

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