Ninja Gaiden is a long-running series that has went through several periods of downtime. Hiatus aside, the series has a reputation for being fast, frustrating, and fricken awesome. Ryu Hayabasa is a gaming icon, and his recent return to the spotlight with Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection is reason to celebrate.
The thing is, new players have no idea what they are walking into. Heck, returning, long-toothed veterans might have forgotten what they once had to go through back in the day. There are plenty of shared experiences to be had, and we are willing to bet most people have done most, if not all of these.
5 Jump Around In A Panic
When playing any of the Ninja Gaiden games, the first thing everyone is going to do when things start heating up, is jump around like an absolute loon. The univerisally shared thought process? Probably that enemies can’t get you if you are flipping around the shop and bouncing off walls.
Does this work? Sometimes, but you will eventually fall to the ground, and when you do, there will be a horde of angry ninjas waiting to shank you. Ryu is incredibly mobile, and this is one of his greatest strengths – but so is precision. Jumping around aimlessly, whilst common, isn’t actually going to get you very far.
Ninja Gaiden isn’t a roguelike or soulsborne title, so death isn’t a mechanic in anyway. Ninja Gaiden is just brutally difficult – even on its standard settings. You will die a lot in these games, and they don’t really get easier the further you go in the series. There is a consistent level of pain involved across the franchise.
Everyone will die in Ninja Gaiden, and when you do, you will feel pangs of shame. But don’t worry, you aren’t alone. In fact, most veteran players can probably pin down the exact moment you died for the first time. Embrace it.
3 Embarrassingly Turn The Difficulty Down
One of the most insulting features of Ninja Gaiden from back in the day was the hidden death counter. If you died too many times early on, the game would subtly shame you and ask if you wanted to drop the difficulty down. Most people had already had their pride kicked in by this point, and they probably accepted this peace offering.
The kicker? Ninja Gaiden on Easy is still tough as an old boot. Just because you tweaked the dial a smidge doesn’t mean the game isn’t out for blood, and it will cut you down mercilessly if you aren’t prepared to learn the ins and outs of the games combat, movement, and mechanics.
2 Fail To Complete The Tutorial
This is more of an “issue” with Ninja Gaiden, as opposed to its sequels. Everyone failed to complete the Ninja Gaiden tutorial level. I mean everyone. You probably didn’t even get to the boss before you got skewered by some white-robed pillock. You might have died multiple times even.
Ninja Gaiden wears its mechanics, gameplay, and challenge on its sleeve. It’s not going to hold your hand, and it’s not going to pretend it isn’t trying to murder you. The real question is: are you going to accept the challenge, or are you going to back down?
1 Fail To Kill The First Boss
So you didn’t back down and you fought all the way to the first boss of the game – the tutorial boss. This guy kicked your teeth in and you quickly became a red smear on the floor. This boss was so difficult back in the day, that a significant number of players and critics couldn’t get past it.
This isn’t one of those “Cuphead moments” where incompetence shined through and made a mockery of the human race. No, this guy is the real deal, and he is out for blood. The worst part? Once you actually beat him, he’s your best bud. It was all just fun and games. Just ignore the fact in multiple timelines your died a brutal death.
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