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Snake's blog

6:15 AM on 05.31.2008

The Innovation of Team Ninja

By now, we all know about the mass amounts of precision and thought that go into every story Team Ninja write. Each arc and plot twist carefully crafted to be perfectly obvious to even the slowest of people. With main characters that are so incredibly deep that they seem shallow and boring...

Probably because they are. Lets face it, the only reason Team Ninja is still a respected company is due to their knack for enjoyable gameplay. Lets take one of their most famous franchises; Ninja Gaiden. Ninja Gaiden is a series that many adore purely for the gameplay, and it's hard to blame them. After finishing Ninja Gaiden Black I was left with a feeling of "K WUT?". I prefer games to have a decent story and interesting characters, NGB supplied neither. The story seemed randomly thrown together, and Ryu was shallow and didn't speak nearly enough to develop a personality that I cared about. All in all, the game was built on astounding graphics and gameplay. Based on story alone, the series would get no where.

As I mentioned previously, their characters are hard to care for. None of them have any strong characteristics or much backstory to base their actions on, they're just there. Originality is lacking. For example, Rachel, the eye candy of Ninja Gaiden, was no more than that, eye candy. We find out her sister turned into a fiend and now she's out to kill as many of these fuckers as she can, that's about it. The rest is all over-exagerated assets and revealing costumes.

Compare her, to the oh so different female roll in Ninja Gaiden II, and you may begin to see a pattern.

I would hope the character designers down at Team Ninja didn't get too many pats on the back for designing NGII's Sonia. I'll be blunt, they look exactly the fucking same. Aside from some very minor changes, the Team didn't really go out on a limb to create an original character.

She also seems to play the same role as Rachel in NG. From the cut scenes in the demo, the story is a highly compressed version of NG. Sonia (/Rachel) gets attacked, holds her own for a while, gets beaten, Ryu comes to save her ass, fails, and Sonia (/Rachel) becomes the damsel in distress to motivate Ryu on his quest for buttsecks.

To conclude (yes, I won't go on for much longer >_>), although I can look past these faults and enjoy Ninja Gaidens truly pathEPIC gameplay, some more innovation/originality in their characters and an intruiging story to finish the pair would create an even more immersive experience. One that could possibly elevate the Ninja Gaiden series into a higher regard than it already is.

~Snake   read

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