Ninja Spirit (Activision) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action

Ninja Spirit
By Activision
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #57

Ninja Spirit

Ninjas and computer games go together like love and marriage - take away the soppy bits and the fighting's very similar. The black pyjama boys have had some of their greatest moments jumping and slaying on arcade screes across the country. No-one did it better than Ninja Spirit. In the coin-op, you could use four authentic weapons to splat, spear and slice foes with, while the bad guys used every trick in the book to try and do you down. To help see off this threat, the ninja warriors' ancient ancestors would come back to lend a land in the scrap.

Could this visually stunning arcade be mimicked on the CPC Well, it's not an exact replica, but the spirit (groan!) lives on. Seven levels of top-notch killing is the outcome, with a game that looks nothing like the arcade but plays well regardless.

The plan is simple. Stalk and slash your way through multiple horizontally-scrolling landscapes, with swords, shuriken, rice scythes and lassoon ropes. Dead enemies occasionally leave the curiously-named Ninja Balls behind [That's enough tittering! - Ed] which can be collected for power-ups. These include three-way firing death stars and ghost ninjas which mirror your every move, including firing, and don't disappear until you kick the bucket - no one life can last a mighty long time.

The evil ones spring from everywhere but with the amount of firepower you can lay out they're more of an inconvenience than a danger. Only the massive end-of-level guardians are really tough.

The good news on the graphics front is that, rather than take the Speccy port road, they've used masses of colour; the bad news is the sprites sometimes merge into the background. Still, the simplicity factor helps you feel superior, which makes a nice changes - the coin-op was a real toughie.

Second Opinion

The graphics are rather messy on the lower levels, though the sprites are good. A bit too easy, though - each games lasts absolutely ages.

First Day Target Score

Reach Level Four.


Graphics 70%
P. Bright and colourful.
N. ...too bright in places.

Sonics 47%
P. Music throughout the game.

Grab Factor 57%
N. Easy game ruined by over-ambitious graphics.

Staying Power 55%
N. You'll finish it real fast.

Overall 66%
Fun, but easy, arcade bash.

Trenton Webb

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