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Shinobi

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Shinobi 3DS, CRUSH3D dated November 12, February 21


Jul 19
// Jim Sterling
SEGA has confirmed the release dates of Shinobi 3DS and CRUSH3D, with the sidescrolling ninja revival arriving November 12 and the perspective-bending puzzler dropping in on February 21.  Shinobi is looking quite promisi...

E3: Jimpressions of Shinobi 3DS

Jun 12 // Jim Sterling
Shinobi 3DS does a terrific job of bringing back the old school feeling of the Shinobi series, where methodical progress and well-timed movements are key to victory. The most important move is the Parry, which will be needed to fend off the attacks of enemies. Failure to master the parry command will result in death.  Like the old games, opposing Ninja will duck and jump while tossing knives at you. Your Parry only defends for a second, so you'll need to time your movements with the enemy perfectly before unleashing your own attacks. This consideration of enemy movement, and knowing when to parry, move and attack, leads to a game that more modern players may not appreciate due to its slower pace. Shinobi fans will feel right at home, though.  Shinobi 3DS is definitely more forgiving than its Genesis ancestors. The player can absorb a lot more damage before facing death, and health items are a bit more liberally spread than before. Nevertheless, the game still puts up a good fight, especially with some of the tricky environmental navigation. Spikes and pitfalls continually threaten the player's life, and you'll need some quick reflexes to utilize the grappling hook, wall-jump and avoid all manner of traps.  For the most part, the controls worked well enough, but I did find a few commands sluggish, especially the wall-jumping. The protagonist could do with being a little more responsive, but it's certainly not a dealbreaker.  Graphically, the game is certainly not the best looking on the 3DS, but it's got a really excellent use of color and a stylized, cartoon-like appearance that I found quite endearing. The game's magic attacks are especially impressive, and really pop out at you with the 3D slider on. The minimalist approach to visuals won't impress everybody, but I think it helps make the game look pretty unique. I found Shinobi 3DS' demo pretty enjoyable. It wasn't a stunning revelation but it was a fun sidescroller with a very welcome respect for the series' eighties/nineties roots. It throws up familiar enemies, a cool horse-riding section, and the kind of thoughtful action gaming that we haven't seen since ... well, since Shinobi's heyday, I suppose.  So yeah, I guess I liked it!
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My love for Shinobi is palpable. I had one of those six-in-one Genesis cartridges as a kid, and The Revenge of Shinobi was one of the most played titles on the collection. I was never a big fan of the series' move to 3D last ...

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Shinobi 3DS trailer looks hot, hot, hot, hot! (Update)


May 27
// Jim Sterling
[Update: God damn it, SEGA! We have been asked to take this video down because apparently it's wrong or something. Because I am nice and honorable like Jesus Christ, I am complying. Apparently a better trailer is coming next ...

Preview: Shinobi 3DS

May 26 // Nick Chester
Shinobi 3DS (Nintendo 3DS)Developer: Griptonite GamesPublisher: SegaRelease date: Fall 2011 It's been awhile since we've seen a Shinobi game, and rather than try to reinvent the classic, Sega's aiming more at a modernization of some core concepts. The idea is to keep the classic Shinobi feel and gameplay -- the side-scrolling action combat and platforming -- with a host of gameplay twists and features for a new generation. What this means is that it plays as you'd expect, with a heavy emphasis on the use of throwing knives (which seem to be in unlimited supply) and close-combat with a katana. The action is swift, with repeated presses of the A button resulting in a combination of slashing strikes. The brisk, nimble ninja can also slide, coming up and out of the maneuver with an upward slice of his blade to eviscerate enemies. A full range of ninja magic will be making its return, as well. Using it is as simple as tapping the L button, unlike some other handheld ninja titles that had you tracing Kanji characters on the touch screen. (I'm looking at you Ninja Gaiden:Dragon Sword; I want to burn up some baddies with ninja fire, not write a letter.) The touch screen did come into play for switching between the magics, which in this early demo consisted of the basic fire, lightning, and wind. While quick to go on the offensive, ninjas do just as well playing it safe on defense. Unfortunately, our shinobi can't directly block attacks, but has been given a parry which I found to be largely useful in most situations. By tapping the R button at the correct time, I was able to effortlessly deflect incoming strikes, leaving enemies open for brutalizing with my ninja steel. Platforming will also play a pretty big role in Shinobi 3DS, if my short demo is any indication. I ran into a number of tricky spots that required well-timed wall jumps to evade spikes traps, and moved from ground to rooftops with a grappling hook. I was only able to see part of the game's first level, which was a village being engulfed in flames as enemy ninja and samurai attacked. Visually, Shinobi 3DS is shaping up pretty well, with a decent range of color and visual effects that bring the 2.5D action to life. 3D effects on or off, it didn't make all that much of a different for these side-scrolling bits. Sega did reveal that over-the-should third-person action sections where you're "moving into the screen" would make it into the mix, which should lend itself well to the 3D effect. From the sound of things, Griptonite is hoping to pack Shinobi 3DS with a ton of content. It's promising over 60 in-game achievements, each of which will unlock something that players can use, view or wear. The classic ninja star throwing mini-game will also be making a return… in mind-blowing 3D! I was also promised an After Burner-inspired jet ride, and at least one massive, wet-dream-inspiring battle against a cyborg shark. At this early stage, Shinobi 3DS seems like a fair mixture of old-school with enough fresh ideas to keep things compelling. I did find the controls to feel a bit on the lose side, at least compared to the tight action of the sprite-based Shinobi games of old. A lot of that may have to do with the fact that we were only able to use the circle pad to control the ninja (which, by the way, Sega did confirm is the father of Joe Musashi form the original Shinobi titles). This will change, with the option to also use the d-pad making the final cut, something I suspect will change how I feel about the game's controls. Shinobi 3DS is out this fall, and I'm hoping Sega brings that cyborg shark to E3. 
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The rumors are true! Sega's Shinobi franchise is making its return this fall with the cleverly titled Shinobi 3DS. Not a port or a remake, the title is being built from the ground up for the Nintendo 3DS with developer Gripto...

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Totally confirmed: Sonic Generations and Shinobi for 3DS


May 25
// Tony Ponce
Don't believe the filthy lies! Rumors of Sonic Generations and a new Shinobi coming to the 3DS are totally unsubstantiated... oh? They're on the cover of Nintendo Power? Well... alrighty then. The upcoming issue puts rest to ...
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Rumor: New Shinobi coming to Nintendo 3DS


May 24
// Jim Sterling
According to the resume of an environment artist, a brand new game based on the Shinobi license is coming to Nintendo's 3DS. Now that is something I want to see.  Griptonite Games, a studio known mostly for portable lice...

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