Originally posted December 20th 2015
Thanks to Natsume Inc for the review code.
Title: Ninja Strike: Dangerous Dash
System: Wii U (eShop)
Release date: 10/15/2015
The main game/story
In this infinite runner, you take control of Blue Shadow (not related to the NES title of the same name, unfortunately) and his four friends, as they go and defeat the enemy ninjas to take back their town’s treasure! There’s not much else to the story outside of that little piece of information, so don’t expect anything epic. Still, with a concept seen many times on mobile devices, does Ninja Strike manage to bring the addictive nature over to the Wii U eShop?
A very basic 2D art style is what you’ll find here, with it heavily resembling that of flash animation at times. While the menus are organized nicely, the animation of the characters isn’t that great, with very basic animations for the enemy ninjas, and some stiff animations for the ninjas that you control. Outside of the occasional day to night transition, there’s nothing that looks smooth during gameplay, which is rather unfortunate.
Music and Sound:
With a very small amount of music tracks, Ninja Strike will inevitably drive you insane with its soundtrack sooner or later, as you’ll be sick and tired of hearing the same song loop constantly while you are playing. It’s best to mute the game if you cover a good distance.
As mentioned earlier, Ninja Strike is an infinite runner, with the main objective revolving around you controlling one of five ninjas as they attack an onslaught of enemies, constantly running while you do so. You can jump by pressing up on the D-pad, attack with your sword, or glide to carefully maneuver your way around enemies. The more enemies you defeat, the more points you get, and some Ninjas have slightly different abilities, although generally the core gameplay remains the same. Occasionally you’ll come across a powerup that will send you flying throughout the stage, and you can even buy other kinds of powerups before starting your run using the coins you collect during your journeys.
Unfortunately, that’s literally all there is to Ninja Strike. You can find special treasures if you do well in a run, and the main goal of the game is to improve your high score by covering more and more distance each time. Besides unlocking the other Ninjas or items, there’s not much else to do except improve your high scores, which thankfully you can share to Miiverse to compare with other members of the community.
In conclusion, Ninja Strike can be an addicting game once you get the hang of it, but sooner or later the repetitive nature will wear on you, and you’ll eventually grow tired of it. While this sort of game would work perfectly on iOS devices or the 3DS, on a home console it just doesn’t feel right. At its core, this is a mobile game through and through, and while there is a lot to enjoy if you like infinite runner high score games, for the $6 price tag I recommend you wait for a price drop or sale instead.
I give Ninja Strike: Dangerous Dash a 5 out of 10, and only recommend it if you are a huge fan of high score games or if this game goes down in price in the future.