The Last Ninja
If being different helps make a game entertaining, thenTheLast Ninja certainly gets off to a good start. It's a ninja game that doesn't rely solely on jaw-breaking fights. It has an interesting story and a nice touch of puzzle-solving, too.
The Last Ninja begins in an ancient era when Japan's proud empire is overthrown by the evil Shogun Kunitoki and his silent legions of ninja assassins. The only person who has the skill to stand against Kunitoki and his soldiers is Armakuni, a master of ninjitsu (the ninja form of the martial arts). But during a fight, Armakuni and Kunitoki are suddenly surrounded by a flash of light.
In the blink of an eye, the two most powerful ninjas in the history of ninjitsu are pulled through a rift in time-to downtown Manhattan in 1991! Armakuni and Kunitoki suddenly find themselves thousands of miles (and many centuries) away from Japan. Before Armakuni and Kunitoki can face each other for their final showdown, Armakuni must use both his physical and mental powers to work through six stages of puzzles and thugs. Only then will he reach Kunitoki.
Each stage includes hidden objects, weapons, and passages. Although the game manual tells you what you must find in each stage, the clues are given as riddles. It takes clever searching and thinking to find and use the objects.
Those who are familiar with role-playing games know how complex these kinds of puzzles can be. Solving the riddle is often more difficult than finding what you're looking for. Fortunately, The Last Ninja shouldn't prove overly frustrating for most players. The riddles are effective, but not too difficult.
Stage 1 is particularly rich with important items. Among other things, there's a key, a map, and a shuriken. The key has an obvious importance, but the map's value is less evident. (It briefly illuminates hidden objects and passages when you enter a stage or a room.) The shuriken is valuable, too, because you'll need all of them for the final showdown with Kunitoki in stage 6.
The Last Ninja probably won't set any new standards for ninja action. However, it does what many ninja games do not - it exercises your mind as well as your thumbs.
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This cart is being adapted from the popular computer game of the same name, as well as its sequel. Last Ninja involves an action quest within rooms displayed in unique three-quarter angles.
Most of the graphics and play mechanics appear to be ported over almost identically in the early version we received. This isn't Ninja GaiDcn, but for kung-fu fans who want a different kind of game, this should fit the bill perfectly.