Just played through the demo of IO Interactive’s Mini Ninjas – an enjoyable but rather short little romp through a cartoonishly rendered medieval Japan. You control a party of three different Ninjas (more in the full game) and can switch between them at will – little Hiro who can possess nearby animals and then sneak past enemy guards, Futo a big brawny fellow with more than a passing resemblance to Mr Incredible from Pixar’s The Incredibles and Suzume whom I haven’t figured out her specialty yet.
While it’s nothing particularly innovative or challenging, Mini Ninjas is surprisingly immersive and engaging – I have played the demo over and over for more than five times, mainly trying to find all the secret areas and hunt down every single artifact.
Maybe it’s the goofy character design and animation, or the silly cutscenes or simply the lightheartedness of the game or even its soothing music which keeps me playing on and on.
Watching the exaggerated motion of the enemy samurai goose-step with armor clinking as they patrol along paths in the bamboo forest or chitter “Ninja Ninja” incessantly like insects as they swarm towards you, never gets old for me
Different types of enemy samurai ensure that a little more than simple button-mashing is required if you’re going for the brute force approach. As with IO Interactive’s Hitman series and with ninjas in general, the preferred way is to rely on stealth and use force only when necessary – sneaking past enemy patrols by creeping around in tall grass is a viable option even for big bad Futo although you’re always welcome to cut the enemy at your own discretion.
More devious gamers will be delighted to find that there are more fancy tricks at your disposal for every situation. You can sprinkle caltrops as a gift for pursuing samurai when you’re feeling nasty or you can always switch to Hiro and use his Spirit Form spell to sneak past enemy strongpoints as a harmless chicken to avoid shedding blood (especially your own ).
I guess Mini Ninjas won’t last long judging from the length and linearity of the demo but it’s a blast while it lasts (hey, it rhymes )
Download the demo and other goodies (click on the Castle to download wallpapers) at the official Mini Ninjas website.
MORE @ THE DOWNLOAD MUNKEY:
Shinobido Imashime Opening Movie
Katakijin – Stylish Ninja Hack n’ Slash Game
Makibishi Comic – Japanese Point &Click Flash Adventure
Ninja Gaiden 2 Official Wallpapers