Yaiba emerges as the more accessible and humorous turn of Ninja Gaiden.
Team Ninja has undergone some significant trouble and changes since it brought 'Ninja Gaiden' back for the first Xbox. Each game released by the team seems to be more divisive of fans. That no-win reception may have been key in allowing a much more dramatic departure for the 'Ninja Gaiden' franchise.
In 'Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z,' the focus of the shifts considerably. Yaiba is a character that failed in his first life, having been dispatched by Ryu Hayabusa. Now having been resurrected with full cybernetic enhancements, his jealously of Ryu sparks a quest for revenge. Standing in his way, though, is a zombie apocalypse. For Yaiba, zombies are merely obstacles. Like with a dense jungle, Yaiba must carve his way through the mass to reach his goal.
From executive producer Keiji Inafune, "Yaiba is a rival to Ryu Hayabusa. He hates that Ryu is the ultimate ninja and is stronger than Yaiba. He is obsessed with defeating Ryu. For the story, if someone can give him a hint of finding Hayabusa, the zombies just get in the way. As a character he's a crazy, over-the-top, dirty ninja--the opposite of Ryu. Hayabusa is the proper ninja: cool, calm, worried about honor and doing things the right way. Yaiba is a complement to that, but the opposite: crazy, brutal, he'll do whatever it takes to win a fight. He doesn't care about a code or honor or anything."
Yaiba's straight forward approach and brutish zombie foes mean that the game is easier to pick up than a traditional 'Ninja Gaiden.' Yaiba can dash instead of jumping, with attacking being more necessary than a cautious approach.
"It will be different from Ninja Gaiden, but it will feel like it could be in a Ninja Gaiden game. We'll also have people coming in from zombie games or who like the art style. They might not be familiar with the technical side of Ninja Gaiden. We don't want to make it so difficult that they just rage-quit in two seconds. We have to care for that new audience as well, but there will be systems in place to please the Ninja Gaiden fans."
One thing thus far teased is Yaiba'a ability to rent body parts from zombie's that are then used as weapons such as the Numb Chuck, a set of nun-chucks built from zombie arms. Other zombies can be exploited to progress with the cited example being setting a zombie in a car that drives forward into a barricade, opening up a new path.
"With zombies, there's always that element of dark humor. So when I was coming up with the idea of a game that crossed ninjas and zombies, that's an element you need to put in for the zombies, for the idea to work."
'Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z' is expected in early 2014 for the Xbox 360 and PS3, and is available for pre-order.
Source: Shack News
Author: Brian Hoss