I-Ninja - PC

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I-Ninja (PC)
Also for: PS2, Xbox, GameCube
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Media: CD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Argonaut Soft. Co.: Argonaut
Publishers: Zoo Digital (GB)
Released: 9 Apr 2004 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 7+
Accessories: Control Pad


Argonaut's martial arts-themed, action platformer, released for the PlayStation 2 in February, has now made its way over to the PC. Quite an unorthodox move - considering the plethora of first-person shooters and real-time strategy titles that seem to have taken over the PC market these days - but a good one nonetheless. So dust off that control pad/rig up your PS2-USB converter and get ready for some fast and furious cartoon ninja action.

The game is set on an Earth-like planet known as 'The World'. You take on the role of the eponymous I-Ninja and, under instruction from your master Sensei, embark on a quest to recover a collection of lost Rage Stones and free the land's inhabitants, who have been imprisoned by the evil Master O-Dor's army of robotic Ranx.

Adhering to the standard for modern 3D platform adventures, I-Ninja sees you explore a diverse array of detailed environments and undertake an assortment of different missions given to you by the Sensei, whilst collecting plenty of stuff along the way and - of course - doing battle with a relentless onslaught of enemies. Each of the environments is complicated in design, meaning that in order to get around, you have to make use of the little guy's impressive roster of gravity-defying moves. Subsequently, within minutes you soon find yourself running up and along walls, grinding rails, swinging on chains, and hovering over chasms with your trusty 'sword copter'.

Throughout the game, as the difficulty level starts to increase, so must the mini martial artist's abilities - as you progress through the missions, you must also do so through the ninja grading system and earn the respective different coloured belts in order to access later areas. There's also a wide variety of weaponry to discover along the way, ranging from the traditional shurikens to some rather extreme ballistics such as guided missiles.

At present the PC is strongly lacking in 'consoley' games like this, so it makes for a refreshing change amongst all the other rather predictable releases. It's also quite a lot of fun and, what's more, it's got ninjas in it - and these guys are cool!