More Reviews
REVIEWS Astro A38 Wireless Headset Review
With the launch of the A38s, Astro has clearly shown that they can rock our eardrums off even if we aren’t sitting in our living rooms.

Destiny Review
With Bungie's leap to next-generation platforms and interstellar space closer to home, I wonder if E.T. is out there somewhere.
More Previews
PREVIEWS Skylanders Trap Team Preview
While younger gamers have flocked to the brand, more mature consumers remain reluctant to jump on board. Skylanders move forward with trappable enemies, though I doubt it’ll turn stubborn heads.
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES Persona 4 Arena Ultimax
Release date: 09/30/14

Alien: Isolation
Release date: 10/07/14

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
Release date: 10/14/14

The Evil Within
Release date: 10/14/14


LATEST FEATURES Assassin's Creed Unity Interview: Ubisoft Talks Multplayer, Next-Gen Development, More
Ubisoft's first "truly" next-gen entry in the Assassin's Creed franchise takes the fight to France. Here's what you can expect.

PlayStation Download September 2014 - Updating Each Week
Sony's platforms always get plenty of new digital software and we'll bring you the list each week with the rest.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES The Updating List of PAX Indies
We're heading to PAX Prime! Are you looking to check out a few unique indie games while you're there? UPDATED: Dragon Fin Soup, Dungeon of the Endless,

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP shandog137
A Letter to the Big “N"
By shandog137
Posted on 09/12/14
I have and will continue to have a place in my heart for Nintendo. In fact, my first console was a Super Nintendo. The video game market has changed drastically since the early '90s and it seems like what once was platinum is more so along the lines of silver now. Nintendo has always been...

Mark of the Ninja Preview

Anthony_Severino By:
Anthony_Severino
04/09/12
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Action 
PLAYERS
PUBLISHER Microsoft Studios 
DEVELOPER Klei Entertainment 
RELEASE DATE Out Now
M Contains Blood and Gore, Strong Language, Violence

What do these ratings mean?

Marked for death success.


It may be hard to believe that at an event with AAA titles like Assassin’s Creed III, Max Payne 3, and Borderlands 2, the game I enjoyed the most was an XBLA title. But this is a new game from Klei Entertainment, creator of Shank and Shank 2, who are no stranger to quality. Klei was on-hand at PAX East showing off their latest anddare I saygreatest game yet.

At first glance, Mark of the Ninja, looks very similar to Shank. The art style and animation, the overly-sized jawsit’s all familiar. But the gameplay itself could not be more different. Instead of running and gunning, pumping baddies full of beatdown and bullets, Mark of the Ninja is a stealth game through and through.



Chatting with Nels from Klei, it’s clear that the design team has the right vision for a ninja game, fully exploring the true essence of a ninja. Sure, a ninja can decimate an entire crowd of enemies as we’ve seen with Ryu Hayabusa in Ninja Gaiden, but that’s really not the type of ninja we all know and love. Mark of the Ninja does what ninjas do best: They remain unseen, staying close to the shadows and striking when an enemy least expects it.

Appropriately, there is a heavy focus on light and dark, encouraging the player to stay away from well-lit areas (Jackie Estacado notwithstanding). And it’s done so in a very cool, artistic way. When the main character walks into the light, he is suddenly full of color. As soon as he’s back in the shadows, he turns almost entirely black.

Staying hidden allows our ninja to traverse the level without being spotted or to sneak-attack the guards surveying the area. Doing this can be difficult, but if you pay attention to your surroundings, you'll find some way or another to cloak yourself. Even if you are seen, there are vents and other points of escape. In some parts, if you are close to a certain object you can hide in plain sight. Now that’s the type of stuff I know ninjas are capable of, but is never properly displayed in any ninja games.



A grappling hook, bamboo darts, and more are at our ninja’s disposal, providing opportunities to stay to the high-ground and avoid detection, take out lights, or create a diversion to send the guards off to inspect so you can move in for a stealth kill (which are brutal). None of these are things you’ve never seen in a game before, but rarely do they come together so smoothly to create an experience that not only makes you feel like a ninja, but is also a ton of fun to play too. Stealth games can feel tedious at times, but not Mark of the Ninja.

Unfortunately, my playthrough was short, ninja-short, but it was oh-so-sweet, leaving me wanting more and more. Luckily, I won’t have to wait too long, as Mark of the Ninja is planned for a Summer release. It’s being published by Microsoft Game Studios, so this one is exclusive to the Xbox 360. Although Klei couldn’t confirm it, the release timeline and the exclusivity should make this the stand-out title of the upcoming Summer of Arcade on XBLA, aligning it with the likes of Limbo and Bastion.
FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER. YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO.

More from the Game Revolution Network




comments powered by Disqus

 


More information about Mark of the Ninja


More On GameRevolution