Ninja Master (Firebird) Review | Computer & Video Games - Everygamegoing


Ninja Master
By Firebird
Spectrum 48K

Published in Computer & Video Games #58

Ninja Master

What's this? A budget Fist? No, not quite. But Ninja Master isn't a bad warm up for a session with the real thing. This game, from the Swedish Tron Software team, is a sort of Ninja Supertest.

You have to compete in four tests of skill. You begin as a lowly white belt and must qualify in each of the four events or tests before you are awarded another pretty coloured belt to hold your ceremonial trousers up with for the next attempt.

Event one is a test of your reactions. You have to fend off flying arrows by kicking and punching at the right time. Each of your three attempts at qualifying is timed and if you don't get the required score, it's back to the start of the game again.

If you do qualify it's on to the karate chop challenge in which your Ninja has to smash a block of wood which looks big enough to be a kerbstone. This is just a two key "decathlon" game. Hammer away to get the powermeter into the red and you'll break the block. Not much of a challenge, this.

Which is something that cannot be said about the next test which pits your Ninja - armed with a sword - against the deadly Ninja stars. This is another - tougher - reaction test. The stars come at you thick and fast and at different levels. Once again you get three timed chances to beat the qualifying score.

Manage this one and you find yourself armed with a blowpipe attempting to shoot down cannisters thrown from the right hand side of the screen - Japanese duck shoot!

The best thing about the game are the sound effects. Horrible screams when your Ninja gets hit, nice oriental cries of triumph when you get something right, and huge cheers from the crowd when you qualify for an event.

The graphics are nicely done and the screen presentation, hi-scores in a little window on the right hand side, with other relevant details along the bottom of the screen, is good too.

Each event is preceded by an intro screen which usefully tells you the right controls, which the player can define if he or she so wishes at the start of the game.

This is a keyboard only game and we experienced some difficulty loading with a joystick interface plugged in. The game doesn't really lose anything because of the lack of a joystick option.

Ninja Master is a good value budget game - but might not be long on lasting appeal after you've whacked through it a few times.