Ninja Gaiden 3 finally has a release date, or at least a release window. Though the title was developed without the leadership of Itagaki, the man responsible for the past two entries and probably the reason they are so challenging, there is still a belief that Team Ninja can carry on without him. Ninja Gaiden 3 will be proof one way or the other.
The game is targeting the currently very busy month of March for its release, and will be released in Wii form some time after that. The game itself has been relatively quiet on the news front, but some screenshots surfaced last month that reminded gamers that this is a bloody, bloody game.
The news comes to us by way of Team Ninja’s new head Yosuke Hayashi, the man who is overseeing the handful of drastic changes being made to this sequel. Principally among those big changes is the introduction of ‘Hero Mode,’ which will allow players to experience the story of Ninja Gaiden 3 rather than grow as a skilled player.
Long since considered one of the harder games to master, Ninja Gaiden was never a cakewalk no matter which difficulty you played it on -- but Hero Mode adds the necessary baked goods to make the trek easier. Essentially Hero Mode does the dodging and the blocking for the player in most cases, whilst not making them completely useless.
Our hands-on experience with the game at E3 showed that Team Ninja is focusing more on the personal story of Ryu (not to say the previous games didn’t) and clearly, in order to facilitate a completion of that story, Team Ninja introduced this new mode. Honestly, die-hard fans might have a problem with it, but this mode can do nothing but help this franchise, which needs all it can get without Itagaki behind it.
If players, who might have been turned off by the challenge, can now at least experience the story and finish the game, then that’s a good thing. We’ll just have to wait to see how many gamers turn out in March.
Are you ready to play Ninja Gaiden 3 this March? Has your interest in the franchise tapered off since Itagaki’s departure?
Ninja Gaiden 3 is slated for a March 2012 release on the PS3 and Xbox 360 with a Wii release to follow.