Team Ninja has been given the gaming public hours of enjoyment with their Ninja Gaiden series over the years. There have been ups and downs in their journey and through many consoles. Now that they’ve come to the Nintendo DS with Ninja Gaiden Dragonsword (NGDS), its nothing but success.
First off, NGDS’s story is pretty much standard in most adventure games. You are Ryu Hayabusa, Master Ninja of the Dragon Clan and inheritor of the Dragon Lineage. The enemy has kidnapped your probable love interest in order to take from you your Dragonsword. The enemy – demons from another dimension called Fiends – is gathering powerful artifacts called dragonstones and the dragonsword and use them to destroy mankind and take over the world.
NGDS’s graphic/art style is simply impressive. It stretches the handheld’s limits and there are no visible drops in frame rate. Team Ninja has found the perfect balance in motion fluidity, polygon count and effects that delivers NGDS’s truly spectacular visuals.
I was pleasantly surprised with NGDS’s sound design. The sound effects are crisp and immensely satisfying. Each slash of Ryu’s sword delivers the umph one would seek as metal meets flesh, anime style. Each clang of metal as two swords meet enrages you to make another strike, and another and another. As Ryu casts ninpu magic spells, fireballs, lightning strikes and magic tornadoes enhances the feeling that you truly are a ninja.
NGDS is played fully with the stylus, with the exception of pushing any button to block blows. I won’t hesitate to say that Team Ninja has created the best stylus based controls with the best response to commands compared to any game previously released on the handheld. Moving is as simply as pointing and holding the stylus in place. Throwing and projectile weapons are controlled by tapping on the enemy you want to hit and sword slashes and combos are controlled by just slashing through the enemy with the stylus. I can hit the enemy, toss him in the air, follow him and drop him to the ground headfirst with just 3 gestures on the stylus.
NGDS has a bit to catch up on in replay value though. The only reason to replay the game is to collect wooden amulets that let you unlock additional content in a gallery called “Muramasa’s Prizes”. However, if you like going over the game for the satisfaction of slashing through waves of foes, this game is definitely for you.
Pinoy Gaming Rate