Ninjabread Man Review
Posted by Anthony Dickens
Ninjabread Man brings some much needed platforming action to our Wii's, but is it any good?
With a name like Ninjabread Man, it was hard to ignore this one. Just look at our hero, its a Gingerbread man that can do Ninja stuff- you don't get much cooler than that.
I was a little nervous of what Ninjabread Man would be like- after all it is from a pretty much unknown publisher, but the screenshots looked half decent so I thought I'd give it a go.
...Sadly this was a huge mistake. It's soon very apparent that the game lacks anything that could be considered quality. Ninjabread Man is incredibly poor even from the moment your Wii loads the game (yes, horrible loading screen on start up), and the only good part is the inevitable point where you eject the game from your Wii before it steals your soul.
The true torture of this game begins after a few awkward menus, after which you finally get to control the lead character in a rather brief and basic training area that explains the controls; those being how to move, jump, slash and fire your weapon.
Essentially Ninjabread Man is a 3D platforming game, its set in “Candy Land” and everything is made of sweets. Go look up Zool if you are unfamiliar with this concept.
Pretty much the instant you first move your character is the point where you realise that the controls are going to be horrible. The poor little Ninjabread Man moves FAR too fast, to the point where simply walking around with an accurate sense of direction becomes a difficult task. The next problem is jumping, initially you're encouraged to flick the nunchuck upwards to achieve a single jump and a double flick to do a double jump. Your hand gets tired in about ten seconds of this, so thankfully you'll realise the Z button does the same thing, phew.
Once you've calmed down from discovering how bad the jumping and moving controls are, its time to pull out your sword and slash Zelda style. Except this hardly ever works. You can slash your arm around all over the place before one of the motions triggers an on-screen action. This is forgivable in the training area, but the second your amongst real enemies you'll soon perish and go to sugar heaven.
Fuming with this naff motion sword action your taught how to use your ninja-sling-shot (yeah, I didn't know they had them either). This is by far the most effective use of the Wiimote in this game, you simply (I'm not sure that's the right word) point the Wiimote on screen and fire, but this only works if your locked onto a target.
It's actually painful trying to jump around the different platforms, the sword fighting simply doesn't work and the shooting is uninspiring. I'm finding it quite hard to describe how horrible the controls in this game are- its clear that the Wii version is a PS2 port with the Wii controls tacked on. We've seen this before and we'll see it again, but hopefully no-one will dare do it as badly as this.
And, After all this preparation your thrown into one of three levels- yes, THREE. The concept? Simple, you have to run around and collect 8 power tube things which need to be shoved into a machine.
Ninjabread Man also suffers from presentation that is beyond woeful. The menu's are badly designed, with no style or flare- its not even in widescreen.
If the game has one saving grace its the title character, great name, great idea- just a shame its been put in a very poorly executed game.
After embracing the Ninjabread Man idea and seeing the screenshots I thought this game could be half decent. Having the played the game, I now feel violated that my Ninjabread Man dream has gone. The game is quite simply the worst Wii game I've played to date. Don't waste your time with this one.