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Sep 302011

One of the most popular types of warriors in pop culture are ninjas and video games provide excellent stories about these highly skilled assassins in action, whether it’s the path of the hero or not. Here are my most favorite video games with ninjas.

#10) Red Ninja: End of Honor (Playstation 2): I only briefly knew about this game, but I found it interesting. Kurenai, a hot female ninja, shows amazing skills like wall running, wire swinging, and sneaking through tight places. Kurenai is quick as she is deadly, but makes it look good with that skimpy outfit.

#9) DOA Dead or Alive (Playstation 2): Like most fighting games, there are many different types of fighters to choose from. This one has several ninjas. They include Kasumi the Shinobi warrior, her brother Hayate, and Ryu Hayabusa the hero from the Ninja Gaiden franchise. These characters made more sense in the movie version, but what’s amazing about this game is that if a fighter gets knocked down a flight of stairs, or off a high bridge, the fight doesn’t end there. It resumes from below. None of the other fighting games I played ever did that before.

#8) Mortal Kombat (Super NES and Sega Genesis): The two ninjas in this classic fighting game are twins Scorpion and Sub-Zero. At first I thought they were just clones with different colored suits, but there’s more to them than that. Sub-Zero can freeze opponents in order to defeat them easily, and Scorpion is a specter with a scorpion stinger in his hand, which grapples opponents helplessly. He also shouts, “Get over here” when he does it. Is that weapon voice activated, or what?

#7) Street Fighter 2 (Super NES): The highly popular trend of fighting games started with this classic from the early 90s. There were many different types of fighters featured in this franchise. In the earlier versions, the only ninja in the group was Vega the Spanish cage fighter. I must say that Vega is one of the toughest to go up against because he’s fast and can climb upon the cage before using his dive attack. Personally, I think Vega is a showoff, but a deadly one.

#6) Simpsons Arcade Game: I know this sounds very unlikely, but there is a level where the Simpsons fight enemy ninjas in a TV station, followed by a ninja master as the boss. He’s a cool character, but it’s very distracting when other ninjas continuously join in the boss fight. As skilled as these ninjas are, I’m surprised that the Simpsons would be any match against them at all. Then again, the Simpsons fought their way past gangsters, zombies, and wild animals like that angry bear boss. So why not ninjas?

#5) Ninja Warriors (Super NES): I remember playing this arcade game years ago, which was about ninjas fighting commandos. It looked interesting, even though I didn’t understand the story line. Of course my favorite was the female red ninja Kunoichi. However, the Super NES version is different, but still interesting.

#4) TMNT franchise (NES and Super NES): Of course, the ninja turtles are long time favorites in the ninja category. Unlike most, these young ninjas are more laid back as they battle crazy enemies like robotic Mousers, Stone Soldiers from Dimension X, robot Foot Ninjas that pop in from all kinds of places, and tough mutants like Bebop and Rocksteady who attack with guns. Let’s face it. Ninjas never use guns, but they always fight with honor.

#3) Bad Dudes (NES): In this old game, tough guys Blade and Striker must rescue the President from enemy ninjas. The action level is tame, but challenging. The ninjas are fast and attack from all sides. The only thing that concerns me about this game is that after succeeding, it has the corniest ending I’ve ever seen.

#2) Ninja Gaiden (NES): Iconic ninja warrior Ryu Hayabusa makes his debut in this game. He is a smooth fighter. Along with his sword, Ryu uses items like windmill throwing stars and fire wheels to fight numerous enemies. Ryu is also a smooth jumper. He can jump off walls and fight enemies when he has a jump & slash weapon. Every time Ryu jumps he always flips forward in midair several times. I’ll tell ya, he makes it all look so easy.

#1) TMNT franchise (Playstation 2): In case you were wondering, these versions are much different than the ones for the NES and Super NES. The quests are more based on the modern animated series and contains the same edginess when the turtles battle enemies and bosses. Not only do these ninjas fight street punks, robots, and aliens, but also stick to their roots as they fight human Foot Soldiers and bosses like Karai and the Ultimate Ninja. Now this is my kind of adventurous ninja action.


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