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Author Topic: [Impressions] Ninja Gaiden 2  (Read 7361 times)
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Autistic Angel
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« Reply #40 on: June 10, 2008, 09:51:20 PM »

I've had very little time to play, so I'm only about halfway through Chapter 5 now.  Yellow essence is so common and free healing items are so frequent and unnecessary that I've been able to spend most of it on weapon upgrades.  So far I have the Dragon Sword, the claws, and the twin swords up to Level 3, and the staff up to Level 2.

The only weapon I have not upgraded at all is the Kusari-gama because using it at all seems tantamount to cheating.  This game is already easy enough without a weapon that simply eviscerates everything in a 25-foot radius whenever you press 'X'.

My prefered weapon so far is probably the Falcon Claws because they're the most challenging to use efficiently: their short range forces you to dismember each enemy one at a time rather than relying on area attacks, and the variety of teleportation moves require some practice to really get down.

I can't wait to unlock some of the better difficulty levels....

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« Reply #41 on: June 11, 2008, 08:32:03 PM »

I'm about halfway through Chapter 3 so far, and I'm waiting to start having fun with the game.  I think that if I hadn't spent a large chunk of time playing GTAIV for the past 2 months, I'd have a more favorable reception of this game.

The graphics are very 'ok', IMO.  As someone mentioned earlier, there are lots of muddy or non-existent textures.  Ryu doesn't even look that great.

I don't know if I'm just looking for things to nitpick or what.  I'm going to keep chugging along and hopefully it will sit better with me.

On a side note, I'm splitting my time between this and The Bourne Conspiracy.  After the debacle that was the demo, I read Ron's review and gave it a shot.  I'm, so far, enjoying that game far more than NG2.
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disarm
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« Reply #42 on: June 11, 2008, 10:06:20 PM »

Quote from: rickfc on June 11, 2008, 08:32:03 PM

The graphics are very 'ok', IMO.  As someone mentioned earlier, there are lots of muddy or non-existent textures.  Ryu doesn't even look that great.

I don't know if I'm just looking for things to nitpick or what.  I'm going to keep chugging along and hopefully it will sit better with me.

i wouldn't call it nitpicking...the graphics really aren't that impressive from what i've seen so far (halfway through chapter 4).  everything looks very clean and well animated, but the texture work is definitely lacking.  i think it's pretty obvious that they just updated the engine from the previous game a little rather than going with all-new tech.  while i prefer the gameplay in NG2, i really think DMC4 was better from a purely visual standpoint.

as for gameplay, i'm near the end of chapter 4 on Warrior and the difficulty is definitely starting to ramp up...and not always in ways that i really see as 'fair' to the player.  it's more than a little frustrating to be bombarded by unblockable projectile attacks from far away enemies while you're trying to avoid the attacks of a large group of ninjas up close, especially when those distant enemies fly so high in the air that you can only attack them with a projectile weapons that you don't have time to aim and fire.  thankfully, they've compensated for some of the cheap tactics with regenerating health and more items than NG.  don't get me wrong, i'm still enjoying the game and the challenge it presents, but i'm not finding it as enjoyable as NGB right now.
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« Reply #43 on: June 11, 2008, 11:02:02 PM »

After listening to the folks on 1Up Yours talk about this, NG2 went from want to meh.
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« Reply #44 on: June 15, 2008, 07:03:59 PM »

I have just a few questions for those who might have finished the game, is it true about the cheap-shot off-screen projectiles?  Also, is it true about the cheap-shot boss battles later in the game?  I am hearing in some forums that hard games are acceptable but games that prolong length of fights by cheap unblockable shots and off screen projectiles that are impossible to avoid is lame.  And supposedly there is alot of this in NG2.


Is it so?    I bought this game, heard all of this and returned it for MGS4.  Good choice for sure, but I still have immense interest in it after I beat MGS4.  I know I cannot beat it on even a couple of rents because of how lowsy I am at these fighting games, so, I will most likely have to buy it and chip away at it.  But not if it is as some are describing and complaining about. 

I see Disarm starting to uncover some of this in his last post.  Please say it ain't so for the entire last 1/2 of the game.

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« Reply #45 on: June 15, 2008, 08:55:58 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on June 11, 2008, 11:02:02 PM

After listening to the folks on 1Up Yours talk about this, NG2 went from want to meh.

I played the demo and it went back to want.  I will probably wait for a sale, though.
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mikeg
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« Reply #46 on: June 15, 2008, 10:48:57 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on June 15, 2008, 08:55:58 PM

Quote from: The Grue on June 11, 2008, 11:02:02 PM

After listening to the folks on 1Up Yours talk about this, NG2 went from want to meh.

I played the demo and it went back to want.  I will probably wait for a sale, though.

Me too.  First place I can get it for $45 or below out the door I will grab it I think.
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« Reply #47 on: June 15, 2008, 11:42:06 PM »

Quote from: mikeg on June 15, 2008, 07:03:59 PM

I have just a few questions for those who might have finished the game, is it true about the cheap-shot off-screen projectiles?  Also, is it true about the cheap-shot boss battles later in the game?  I am hearing in some forums that hard games are acceptable but games that prolong length of fights by cheap unblockable shots and off screen projectiles that are impossible to avoid is lame.  And supposedly there is alot of this in NG2.


I haven't finished the game yet (halfway through Act 4), but I can already tell you that there are a lot of off-screen projectiles in this game.  It is annoying as hell that you're fighting a dude or more, and another jackass is shooting fire arrows at you from some unseen vantage point.   Unfortunately, this happens very often in this game mad
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disarm
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« Reply #48 on: June 16, 2008, 03:11:45 AM »

Quote from: rickfc on June 15, 2008, 11:42:06 PM

Quote from: mikeg on June 15, 2008, 07:03:59 PM

I have just a few questions for those who might have finished the game, is it true about the cheap-shot off-screen projectiles?  Also, is it true about the cheap-shot boss battles later in the game?  I am hearing in some forums that hard games are acceptable but games that prolong length of fights by cheap unblockable shots and off screen projectiles that are impossible to avoid is lame.  And supposedly there is alot of this in NG2.


I haven't finished the game yet (halfway through Act 4), but I can already tell you that there are a lot of off-screen projectiles in this game.  It is annoying as hell that you're fighting a dude or more, and another jackass is shooting fire arrows at you from some unseen vantage point.   Unfortunately, this happens very often in this game mad

as i mentioned in my last post, it definitely happens a lot and is a major pain in the ass.  i enjoy the block/dodge/attack fighting, but trying to dodge unblockable long-range projectiles while you're surrounded by melee enemies and guys that breath unblockable fire is more than a little annoying.  it hasn't stopped me from playing yet though.  the game has issues, but i'm still enjoying it through the middle of chapter five.  of course i also didn't mind the extreme difficulty of NG:Black...actually welcomed the challenge because it's something you don't get from a lot of other games.
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« Reply #49 on: June 16, 2008, 03:22:36 AM »

Something else to note is that how many opponents you are fighting, and the type also depend on the difficulty level.  Acolyte has a lot less opponents in certain areas.
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mikeg
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« Reply #50 on: June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM »

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!
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Ridah
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« Reply #51 on: June 18, 2008, 12:07:39 AM »

Quote from: mikeg on June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!

Oh come the fuck on, like this hasn't been going on in video games since the beginning of time? It makes no sense that just because you can't see an enemy on screen that they can't hit you with ranged attacks.
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« Reply #52 on: June 18, 2008, 12:28:34 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 12:07:39 AM

Quote from: mikeg on June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!

Oh come the fuck on, like this hasn't been going on in video games since the beginning of time? It makes no sense that just because you can't see an enemy on screen that they can't hit you with ranged attacks.

1) yes, it has...
2) this is true...

but neither point changes the fact that it's still, basically, cheap...


(this isn't to say i'm not looking forward to playing this sometime, btw ...)
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« Reply #53 on: June 18, 2008, 02:51:59 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 12:07:39 AM

Quote from: mikeg on June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!

Oh come the fuck on, like this hasn't been going on in video games since the beginning of time? It makes no sense that just because you can't see an enemy on screen that they can't hit you with ranged attacks.

How can you possibly (and quite angrily, it seems) defend this as an acceptable game mechanic?
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« Reply #54 on: June 18, 2008, 03:01:12 AM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 18, 2008, 02:51:59 AM

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 12:07:39 AM

Quote from: mikeg on June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!

Oh come the fuck on, like this hasn't been going on in video games since the beginning of time? It makes no sense that just because you can't see an enemy on screen that they can't hit you with ranged attacks.

How can you possibly (and quite angrily, it seems) defend this as an acceptable game mechanic?

I'm not angry (sorry, swearing is a regular for my vocab), but I'm saying that realistically there's gonna be motherfuckers shooting you at a distance, just because you can't SEE them doing it doesn't mean you shouldn't have to worry about them  Tongue How would it even work? At one moment you have the camera facing the ranged enemies and their projectiles are hitting you, and the moment you turn away and the camera is no longer on them they start attacking you?
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« Reply #55 on: June 18, 2008, 04:07:49 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 03:01:12 AM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 18, 2008, 02:51:59 AM

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 12:07:39 AM

Quote from: mikeg on June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!

Oh come the fuck on, like this hasn't been going on in video games since the beginning of time? It makes no sense that just because you can't see an enemy on screen that they can't hit you with ranged attacks.

How can you possibly (and quite angrily, it seems) defend this as an acceptable game mechanic?

I'm not angry (sorry, swearing is a regular for my vocab), but I'm saying that realistically there's gonna be motherfuckers shooting you at a distance, just because you can't SEE them doing it doesn't mean you shouldn't have to worry about them  Tongue How would it even work? At one moment you have the camera facing the ranged enemies and their projectiles are hitting you, and the moment you turn away and the camera is no longer on them they start attacking you?

The way it would work is that the game designers wouldn't put those motherfuckers there.  Especially when you're expected to fight a whole crapload of other challenging motherfuckers at the same time.
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mikeg
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« Reply #56 on: June 18, 2008, 12:00:09 PM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 18, 2008, 04:07:49 AM

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 03:01:12 AM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 18, 2008, 02:51:59 AM

Quote from: Ridah on June 18, 2008, 12:07:39 AM

Quote from: mikeg on June 17, 2008, 11:44:03 PM

Very sad to here they included cheap ass off screen projectiles just to make it more difficult.  Few things piss me off more than cheap shots.  May have to pass on this now at ANY price.  Damn!

Oh come the fuck on, like this hasn't been going on in video games since the beginning of time? It makes no sense that just because you can't see an enemy on screen that they can't hit you with ranged attacks.


How can you possibly (and quite angrily, it seems) defend this as an acceptable game mechanic?

I'm not angry (sorry, swearing is a regular for my vocab), but I'm saying that realistically there's gonna be motherfuckers shooting you at a distance, just because you can't SEE them doing it doesn't mean you shouldn't have to worry about them  Tongue How would it even work? At one moment you have the camera facing the ranged enemies and their projectiles are hitting you, and the moment you turn away and the camera is no longer on them they start attacking you?

The way it would work is that the game designers wouldn't put those motherfuckers there.  Especially when you're expected to fight a whole crapload of other challenging motherfuckers at the same time.


Well said Bullwinkle.  And plus, just becuz something has been in alot of other games doesn't make it any more acceptable.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2008, 12:05:26 PM by mikeg » Logged

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Autistic Angel
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« Reply #57 on: June 19, 2008, 06:12:44 PM »

Quote from: mikeg on June 15, 2008, 07:03:59 PM

I have just a few questions for those who might have finished the game, is it true about the cheap-shot off-screen projectiles?  Also, is it true about the cheap-shot boss battles later in the game?  I am hearing in some forums that hard games are acceptable but games that prolong length of fights by cheap unblockable shots and off screen projectiles that are impossible to avoid is lame.  And supposedly there is alot of this in NG2.

I finished Chapter 10 last night which puts me more than 2/3rds of the way through the game.  It is true that there are lots of deadly projectiles and unblockable combos in the game, but since they're mostly used by the main character to reduce multiple enemies into finely diced giblets, I'd hardly say that they're *prolonging* the length of the fights.

Quote from: mikeg on June 15, 2008, 07:03:59 PM

I know I cannot beat it on even a couple of rents because of how lowsy I am at these fighting games, so, I will most likely have to buy it and chip away at it.

If you found yourself frustrated by other games in the genre like Devil May Cry 3 or Ninja Gaiden: Black, I totally understand why you'd believe that about this game.  The good news is that the difficulty of Ninja Gaiden II is closer to that of a game like Viva Pinata: once you get a handle on how things work and purchase a few upgrades, you can pretty much sit back and relax your way through the game.

Due to a number of significant gameplay changes, NG2 is a *far* more forgiving game than its predecessor.  I currently have every weapon in the game upgraded to their maximum available level, I have every restorative item I can possibly carry, and if the game were suddenly to get hard, I have than 370 thousand essence saved up to buy more.  I couldn't get much past the first scorpion boss in Devil May Cry, but I can rate as "Master Ninja" in ever level of NG2 so far.  confused

I highly recommend you try it, even if you only give it a rental.  Here are few tips that might not be obvious at first:

1) Pressing X + A together will jump directly at the nearest enemy.  This not only helps you avoid attacks while closing within striking distance, it's also the precursor to several devastating aerial attacks like the Guillotine Throw (X + A while in the air, near an enemy) and the Flying Swallow (push the left stick towards the direction of the jump and press Y).

2) Rather than running during combat, get comfortable with the dodge-jump-dodge-jump maneuver.  Enemies have a tough time hitting you when you're weaving all over the place, so this lets you avoid damage while repositioning yourself in combat.  Make sure to zig-zag when trying to close in on enemies with heavy ranged attacks, and when in doubt, run up a wall and press 'Y' -- you'll usually decapitate anything in the vicinity.

3) If you're in the air and press 'Y' just as you land, you'll instantanously suck in any nearby essence and execute an Ultimate Technique.  The exact effect varies from weapon to weapon, but it's unblockable and nearly always lethal to whatever you hit.  (Note: without any essence around you'll just do a heavy attack, but you can hold 'Y' and try to charge up an Ultimate Technique if you think you have time.)

4) You do not have to stand still to fire your bow: shooting it in the middle of a jump will cause Ryu to auto-target the nearest appropriate target.  It's dreadfully ineffective against bosses, but against swarms of aerial enemies pelting you with ranged attacks, two shots will slay the average wyrm.

5) "Life of the Thousand Gods" items extend your maximum life, but it also heals you back to 100% health.  Save them until you need them during a tough boss fight.  Same goes for Talismans of Rebirth and even basic healing items -- don't fritter them away if you can beat the last enemy, regenerate the majority of your lost lives, and probably find a free healing station around the next corner.

6) Different weapons tend to be more effective against different types of enemies.  For example, the Lunar Staff is expecially strong against large numbers of small enemies -- skelletal scorpions and the like -- while the Eclipse Scythe is most effective against large individual targets.  The exceptions to the rule are the Dragon Sword which has a quick and deadly combo for every occassion, and the Kusari-gama which is the ninja equivilent of a tactical nuke.

Let us know how it goes! ninja2

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #58 on: June 23, 2008, 04:00:14 PM »

I picked this up over the weekend and had a chance to play it last night.  I have a question about the first boss fight.

Spoiler for Hiden:
I beat him the first time, but used Ninpo to do it.  At first I was trying to beat him without using the Ninpo, but gave up and beat him the cheap way.  It seemed like blocking wasn't working and I couldn't figure out a good way to hurt him.  Anyone have any tips on beating him without Ninpo?
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Autistic Angel
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« Reply #59 on: June 27, 2008, 03:12:39 PM »

Sorry -- I didn't see this post earlier in the week. icon_frown

Spoiler for Hiden:
The key to all the bosses in Ninja Gaiden is not to get greedy -- when you land a good combo, no matter how tempting it might be to try for another, dash-jump away immediately.  Pressing your attack too long is a sure way to get grappled and suffer enormous damage.

Another trick that carries over from the first game is that large enemies like the Spider Monster will flinch if you hit them after they miss with their own attack.  This keeps them immobile while you whale on them with a good combo.  Get one in, then jump away and wait for them to try another attack.

If you press X and A simultaneously to jump towards the boss, press the stick in his direction, and press Y in mid-air, you should perform the "Flying Swallow" which is a teleportation leap attack which typically takes you right *through* the Spider Monster and lands behind him.  It also typically staggers him for a moment, leaving him wide open for a nice 3 or 4 hit combo before you jump away.

If Flying Swallow bounces off, pull back immediately because he's just about to counter attack.  Wait for him to miss, then leap in hit him hard.

Spider Monsters also have the sloppy habit of standing still between attacks, leaving you plenty of time to hold down Y and charge up your Ultimate Technique.  So long as you release it within range, this attack should deal tremendous damage nearly every time -- and net you a nice score bonus in the process.

Frankly, I'm impressed you were able to beat him with Ninpo: compared to many other enemies, I've found the Spider Monsters to be unusually resistant to Art of the Inferno!  There's other Ninpo that'll tear them right in half, though.... nod

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #60 on: June 27, 2008, 05:29:29 PM »

By the way, I completed the game on Warrior this weekend and immediately started a second play through to get Dragon Sword Mastery.  I understand if people find Ninja Gaiden II challenging or even frustrating, but I think reports of cheap or unfair off-screen projectiles are a little over-stated.  As many times as I died on my first run through the game, there was nothing that a change in weaponry, tactics, or healing usage couldn't solve.

The simple fact is that there's nothing in this game that even *remotely* compares to the difficulty of
Spoiler for Hiden:
the Pterodactyl Fiend boss fight, much less the timed jumping puzzle to escape Vigoor
in its predecessor.  I've completed Ninja Gaiden, NG: Black and NG: Sigma a total of over a dozen times, and those parts *still* require me to put down the controller and walk away to cool down at least once before I can finally power my way through them.

The enemies in NG2 are faster, more aggressive, and a lot more numerous, but they slice apart so easily that they might as well be made out of snow.  Killing any one guy lets you execute one of the new Ultimate Techniques that will kill his four closest friends, and doing *that* will drop enough essence to obliterate the next fifteen.  Save Stations are everywhere, and there are automatic checkpoints at the start of every boss battle and every new chapter -- no more getting killed in Chapter 4 and reloading your last save point from the middle of Chapter 3.

Everything from clearing a room to extending your life bar to saving your game heals up your wounds.  Even basic healing items restore a third of your life bar, and even if you run out of the free ones littering every nook and cranny of every level, there's always a shop around the bend where you can spend your 600,000 unused essence to buy more.

The quarterstaff, bladed nunchuks, twin katanas, and signature Dragon Sword all return from the first game, each with so many new combos that mashing the gamepad with your palm is likely to kill a half-dozen bad guys.  The large, unwieldy Dabilahro great sword and War Hammer have not been carried over, but in their place we get a giant reaping scythe which can cleave through wide swaths of enemies with each swing, ninja claws which make Ryu mobile enough to shred his foes while evading entire clouds of explosive throwing stars, and the Kusari-gama: a bladed chain so astonishingly lethal that you could probably pass the game playing only with your feet.

The exceptions that really stand out from the rest of the arsenal are the Tonfa.  With an even shorter effective range than the claws and an initial attack speed roughly as slow as the quarterstaff, this pair of policeman's nightsticks are almost comically impotent against the swarms of nimble ninjas and demons in every level.  Anyone who can achieve Tonfa Mastery will have a lot to brag about.

Ninja Gaiden II is tailor-made for all the people who found the original appealing, but too punishing to enjoy.  For veterans of the first game, completing Warrior unlocks Mentor difficulty where weapon upgrades are more expensive, soldiers with laser-guided bazookas take up sniping positions in the first level, and even run-of-the-mill ninjas seem to secrete incendiary shurikens from their pores. ninja

I highly recommend this game. icon_cool

-Autistic Angel
« Last Edit: June 28, 2008, 04:49:38 PM by Autistic Angel » Logged
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« Reply #61 on: June 27, 2008, 07:58:20 PM »

Angel - You ass, now I want it. frown

Anyone have one for trade? Tongue
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« Reply #62 on: June 27, 2008, 08:43:54 PM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on June 27, 2008, 05:29:29 PM


By the way, I completed the game on Warrior this weekend and immediately started a second play through to get Dragon Sword Mastery...I've completed Ninja Gaiden, NG: Black and NG: Sigma a total of over a dozen times...


Ninja Gaiden II is tailor-made for all the people who found the original appealing, but too punishing to enjoy. 


I'm not sure these two thoughts go together, exactly.

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« Reply #63 on: June 27, 2008, 09:43:14 PM »

Quote from: Purge on June 27, 2008, 07:58:20 PM

Angel - You ass, now I want it. frown

Anyone have one for trade? Tongue

Me too.  I am going to go buy it this weekend.  Crap!
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« Reply #64 on: June 27, 2008, 11:31:45 PM »

I just don't know what to make of Autistic Angel's comments. He clearly understands the game, but his description of the game difficulty is significantly different than most professional review sites, which use adjectives such as "brutal", "punishing" and "unforgiving".

I want to believe Autistic Angel, but I'm concerned that he is a "natural" at fighting games, so to him everything is actually easier than it is for the other 90% of the population. On the original Xbox certain people kept saying that Ninja Gaiden wasn't that difficult once you got a few combos down , and took some time to practice. I took their advice, got manhandled repeatedly, and could never finish the game. Turned out to be one of the most frustrating titles I ever played.

Ironically, I played the demo of Ninja Gaiden 2 on the easier difficulty and I never used a health item, and didn't even come close to dying once. So now I'm just conflicted. The demo seems to back up Autistic Angel's comments, by every damned review site is stating the opposite. I'd really love to grab this one, because I enjoyed the demo. But at times I still wake up in the dead of night trembling over the raping I took in the previous game.
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« Reply #65 on: June 27, 2008, 11:35:08 PM »

I'd trust Angel over other review sites... often they don't share their experience, but rather comment on what they believe others play at.

Is this a game I'd hand over to my girlfriend who got dizzy watching Gears of War? No. But the demo showed me that the levels were easy enough, the camera moves well and I have control over it, and stupid Autistic has me wanting to buy it. frown
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« Reply #66 on: June 27, 2008, 11:45:42 PM »

Quote from: Dante Rising on June 27, 2008, 11:31:45 PM

I just don't know what to make of Autistic Angel's comments. He clearly understands the game, but his description of the game difficulty is significantly different than most professional review sites, which use adjectives such as "brutal", "punishing" and "unforgiving".

I want to believe Autistic Angel, but I'm concerned that he is a "natural" at fighting games, so to him everything is actually easier than it is for the other 90% of the population. On the original Xbox certain people kept saying that Ninja Gaiden wasn't that difficult once you got a few combos down , and took some time to practice. I took their advice, got manhandled repeatedly, and could never finish the game. Turned out to be one of the most frustrating titles I ever played.

Ironically, I played the demo of Ninja Gaiden 2 on the easier difficulty and I never used a health item, and didn't even come close to dying once. So now I'm just conflicted. The demo seems to back up Autistic Angel's comments, by every damned review site is stating the opposite. I'd really love to grab this one, because I enjoyed the demo. But at times I still wake up in the dead of night trembling over the raping I took in the previous game.

That's kind of what I was saying earlier.  I'm not sure I'd believe comments about a game's difficulty from someone who's burned all of the moves from the last game into his subconscious and can pull them off in his sleep.  Angel's sense of "easy" may be a little far from the mark of Joe Average.

Not to say his comments weren't well thought out and don't have me toying with getting the game anyway.
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« Reply #67 on: June 27, 2008, 11:47:15 PM »

nice write-up, aa - thanks! smile ...
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« Reply #68 on: June 28, 2008, 06:01:37 PM »

I have played the first few levels of the sequel and I can confirm it is easier than the original.  I remember having tons of issues with the first boss battle in the original and I have done two boss battles so far with no issues.
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« Reply #69 on: June 28, 2008, 06:30:06 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on June 28, 2008, 06:01:37 PM

I have played the first few levels of the sequel and I can confirm it is easier than the original.  I remember having tons of issues with the first boss battle in the original and I have done two boss battles so far with no issues.

just wait...it does get more difficult.  i'm still not sure i'd say it hits the difficulty of the original though...
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« Reply #70 on: July 02, 2008, 04:42:00 PM »

Once I completed my quest for Dragon Sword Mastery, I immediately restarted to get Dragon's Fang & Tiger's Claw Mastery.  Those are the twin katanas, and although they're slower than a single blade and lose efficiency with aerial combos, they also deal significantly more damage and the variety of whirlwind-style attacks make them great for handling dense crowds.

It's an interesting challenge trying to beat the entire game without switching weapons.  In Normal Mode, you can just swap one melee style for another to suit the situation, but in Weapon Mastery Mode, you really learn to appreciate all the nuances of each separate type.  Even the Tonfa I was maligning before have their use: there was a specific sort of enemy near the end of the game that they were particularly effective against, and learning to defeat them with the twin katanas has required a new approach.

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 27, 2008, 08:43:54 PM

Quote from: Autistic Angel on June 27, 2008, 05:29:29 PM


By the way, I completed the game on Warrior this weekend and immediately started a second play through to get Dragon Sword Mastery...I've completed Ninja Gaiden, NG: Black and NG: Sigma a total of over a dozen times...

Ninja Gaiden II is tailor-made for all the people who found the original appealing, but too punishing to enjoy. 


I'm not sure these two thoughts go together, exactly.

I think they do when you consider all the points between them.  I'm not contending that Ninja Gaiden II "seems" easier than the original; I'm saying that there are are several specific changes to the game mechanics which make it definitively more forgiving.

In the original Ninja Gaiden, you could save your game in a position with so little health that it was all but impossible to continue.  The game was replete with obtuse environmental puzzles the required backtracking through areas with respawning enemies.  Some of the weapon upgrades were completely useless, encouraging you to waste valuable essence that would be better saved for health potions or other upgrades later in the game.  One sword would secretly leech away your health whenever it was equipped, but since nothing in the description mentioned that, you probably wouldn't notice unless you were looking directly at the life bar.  Now *that* was a brutal, unforgiving, and punishing game! icon_eek

NG2 has nothing like that.  There's no backtracking: the longest distance between a key and a keyhole in the game is about a hundred feet.  Old weapons are not rendered obsolete by newer ones, and even if they were, essence flows so freely that you could easily upgrade every one several times over.  Oh, and none of them are cursed to kill you where you stand. icon_razz

Quote from: Dante Rising on June 27, 2008, 11:31:45 PM

I want to believe Autistic Angel, but I'm concerned that he is a "natural" at fighting games, so to him everything is actually easier than it is for the other 90% of the population.

If you think I'm some sort of fighting game savant, let's get together and try some Dead or Alive 4 through X-Box Live!.  There's no faster way for you to get the "Win 20 Matches In A Row" Achievement. confused

Listen, here's another big difference in NG2: when its predecessor eventually had an "Easy" mode added in, it was called "Ninja Dog," could only be unlocked through repeated deaths and choosing to "Abandon the Way of the Ninja," and it would brand your character as a big sissy by adding a pretty pink armband. Fabulous

In the sequel, "Easy" is simply called "Way of the Acolyte" on the main menu right from the start.  Weapon upgrade costs are slightly reduced, enemies space out their attacks a little more, and some of the tougher foes delay their appearance until later in the game when your upgraded combos will make them easier to combat...but I guarantee newcomers won't feel patronized as the challenge level starts to ramp up in later stages.  It really does a great job of getting you comfortable with the gameplay, and you even get an Achievement and alternate costume for beating it!

If you're on the fence about this game, give it a rental, try out Acolyte Mode, and remember my advice.  If you can't make your way through at least Chapter 7 and have a great time leaving a trail of dismembered torsos in your wake, maybe this genre just isn't for you. 

I'd just hate to see anyone miss out on this fantastic sequel because they were legitimately put off by the brutal nature of the first. nod

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #71 on: July 02, 2008, 05:19:27 PM »

By the way, I'm going to post advice about how to avoid two specific "cheap" deaths in the game.  They're easy to work around once you know they're coming, but since there's no way to anticipate them in advance, they could definitely be frustrating.

The following spoilers will reveal two specific boss encounters, but since there's very little plot to Ninja Gaiden II aside from "murder lots of dudes," it won't really affect the story.

Spoiler for Hiden:
1) When you kill the giant fire armadillo -- you'll know him when you see him -- he will collapse and then explode after a few seconds.  This will instantly kill you if you're unaware, but if you simply hold down the left trigger to Block, you'll only take a tiny amount of damage.

2) Later in the game, you'll face the fire demon Zedonius on a lake of molten lava.  After you kill him, you'll see a tunnel allowing you to move to the next area, but if you look very carefully you'll notice several jellyfish mines laced across the entrance.  Use your bow to detonate them all at a safe distance before you attempt to run through or they'll almost certainly kill you.

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #72 on: July 02, 2008, 05:40:09 PM »

Just waiting for the first sale I see on this game.     You have convinced me that my fears are groundless.  Now, I just need retailers to come through. 
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« Reply #73 on: July 02, 2008, 06:57:02 PM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on July 02, 2008, 04:42:00 PM


Listen, here's another big difference in NG2: when its predecessor eventually had an "Easy" mode added in, it was called "Ninja Dog," could only be unlocked through repeated deaths and choosing to "Abandon the Way of the Ninja," and it would brand your character as a big sissy by adding a pretty pink armband. Fabulous


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« Reply #74 on: July 18, 2008, 07:57:21 PM »

I've played through the first few levels and thought I'd give some impressions and ask some questions. As far as the combat it seems pretty similar to the original, obliterating enemies seems to be an important focus as wounded enemies have some seriously damaging kamikaze attacks. Difficulty definitely seems a few notches down which to be honest I'm fine with, especially if it saves me a lot of frustration later in the game. The camera is horrible though, within 2 minutes of starting the game I could tell the camera was shitty, easily one of the worst I can recall. I don't understand why it trails so far behind when your running, and then zooms in way too close during certain combat situations.

I have a question about combos - Is there a combo list for each weapon? I feel like I'm just button mashing constantly and I recall there being a more structured combat system in the last game that I'm missing here. 
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« Reply #75 on: July 19, 2008, 09:40:00 AM »

Wow, that boss battle at the end of chapter 4 was fucking retarded. After about 20+ tries I finally got lucky and defeated him, what a horrible experience. The further I progress the more I feel this is just another generic action game, I haven't seen any improvements over the original NG. The combat is becoming extremely repetitive as well, where the hell are the combo lists?
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« Reply #76 on: July 19, 2008, 11:58:20 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on July 19, 2008, 09:40:00 AM

The combat is becoming extremely repetitive as well, where the hell are the combo lists?

hit Start, highlight the weapon whose combos you want to see, then hit 'Y' for the 'Techniques' list.  the problem is that there are a ridiculous number of combos...way too many to learn them all.  fortunately, you can get by pretty well by just remembering a few of the best/easiest ones icon_cool
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« Reply #77 on: July 19, 2008, 04:23:14 PM »

Quote from: Ridah
Wow, that boss battle at the end of chapter 4 was fucking retarded. After about 20+ tries I finally got lucky and defeated him, what a horrible experience.

I can't speak for Way of the Mentor, but on Acolyte and Warrior difficulties, the Chapter 4 boss is extremely vulnerable to
Spoiler for Hiden:
aerial combos, particularly with an upgraded Lunar Staff.  Jump at him, do two quick attacks with X and a heavy attack with Y, and then dash away so you can repeat.  It's pretty logical, too: electricity won't affect you much if you aren't grounded, so staying airborne is the best way to battle a guy who likes to shoot lightning at you.

He's tough at first, but with that tip in mind, I think you'll find he's one of the bigger push-overs in the game. icon_cool

Quote from: disarm
hit Start, highlight the weapon whose combos you want to see, then hit 'Y' for the 'Techniques' list.  the problem is that there are a ridiculous number of combos...way too many to learn them all.  fortunately, you can get by pretty well by just remembering a few of the best/easiest ones

The list looks a lot longer than it really is: the game gives fancy names to every possible action, so when you run along a wall and press 'Y', it lists that separately from if you press 'X'.

The Techniques List gives you an idea of different button combinations, but I think the big trick is learning how your attacks change when standing still versus when you're pressing forward.  Standing attacks tend to be less focused, potentially striking enemies on your flanks, but are more easily blocked.  Advancing attacks are more direct, usually homing in on a single foe to break his defense and keep him off balance, but they can give his buddies a chance to pull back and regroup.

Different weapons are more effective in different situations so there's a lot of experimentation you can try, but I'd really encourage people to get comfortable with the Guillotine Throw and Izuna Drop.  They're only effective against standard-sized enemies, but they both deal heavy damage and can be extremely effective when you're surrounded. thumbsup

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #78 on: July 19, 2008, 09:49:23 PM »

One thing I'm enjoying is the variety in level design, ever chapter feels very fresh. I wish they would delve deeper into who Ryu is, however, as I find myself being driven solely by the gameplay and not at all by the story. NG2 reminds me a lot of DMC4.
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« Reply #79 on: July 20, 2008, 03:51:22 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on July 19, 2008, 09:49:23 PM

One thing I'm enjoying is the variety in level design, ever chapter feels very fresh.

that's definitely been one of the highlights of the game for me so far as well...constantly seeing new environments and running to new enemies.  i didn't think the first few chapters were anything too special, but the level design really kicked up a notch as soon as i hit the airship.  i haven't gotten much farther than that due to lack of play time lately, but it was the first chapter that i thought was a real standout compared to the original NG or DMC4...very cool icon_cool
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