First Impressions: G.G. Series Shinobi Karakuri-Den

Mappy Ninja Gaiden

Ninja have been a fixture of video games for a long time, so it's only fitting that Suzak have created a game for the G.G. Series featuring one that bears more than a passing resemblance to Ryu from Ninja Gaiden. Though his inspiration may run around beating up street toughs, the hero of Shinobi Karakuri-Den bounces around like a certain badge-wearing mouse from Namco.

It's a bit weird at first, but you'll quickly get used to it and enjoy the extra bit of challenge offered by moving about via bouncing from block to block, as blocks disappear after a single bounce. Your goal is to destroy gear wheels and then bounce into the exit door opened as a result, getting bonus points for slashing samurai and collecting coins on the way.

You have a few lives and can take a few hits per life from both samurai and enemy ninja that appear in later levels to thwart you. In addition to your ninjatō, you'll also have a never-ending supply of shuriken, just like another famous videogame ninja.

Every five levels or so you'll face a boss who must be defeated to unlock the door to the next level, where you'll be treated to a nice cutscene with Japanese text dialogue.

It's a fun combination of quirky platforming and action that's great for the odd play and nicely complements the rest of the G.G. Series of cheap and cheerful arcade titles on the DSi.