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In comparison to the better known console version, this game is a traditional beat'em up game similar to Double Dragon in which the player walks from left to right while battling numerous enemies. Only if all foes are dispatched of, the player can advance in the level. It's also possible to perform special attacks and use weapons. The latter are either collectable power-ups or environmental objects like phone boots.

The player's ninja can attack his enemies using his bare hands and feet or using a sword (for a limited time). He can also perform moves such as a flying neck throw, a back flip and hang kicks, performed while hanging in scenario objects. Throwing enemies against objects such as phone cabins, oil drums or dumpsters will destroy them, revealing power ups such as health items and swords. At some points, Ryu will have to perform acrobatic moves to carry on. He has a life bar starting with five units.

The game takes place in United States' locations such as Las Vegas, North Carolina, Los Angeles, the Grand Canyon and Brooklyn. The enemies in those stages are mostly of the same five kinds, including Jason Vorhees' look-alikes and other masked men. There is a boss fight at the end of each stage.

A two-player co-operative game is also featured. Whenever the player dies, a continue screen will appear showing the player's ninja chained to a table while a circular saw descends upon him.


Ninja Gaiden ZX Spectrum I lost all my lives. Do I want to continue?
Ninja Gaiden DOS It's your call (EGA)
Ninja Gaiden Amiga Doing a somersault. You must use this move a lot if you want to win in this game.
Ninja Gaiden ZX Spectrum Press fire to start.

Promo Images

Ninja Gaiden Magazine Advertisement Pages 2-3
Ninja Gaiden Magazine Advertisement Pages 2-3

Alternate Titles

  • "Shadow Warriors" -- European title
  • "Ninja Ryukenden" -- Japanese title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

A slap in the face! Ouch! DOS Fake Spam (94)

Critic Reviews

Raze Lynx Aug, 1991 91 out of 100 91
Your Sinclair ZX Spectrum Sep, 1990 90 out of 100 90
Computer and Video Games (CVG) Amstrad CPC Sep, 1990 86 out of 100 86
Zero Atari ST Nov, 1990 82 out of 100 82
Atari ST User Atari ST Oct, 1990 76 out of 100 76
Digital Press - Classic Video Games Lynx Jun 13, 2004 7 out of 10 70
Play Time Lynx Sep, 1991 59 out of 100 59
Video Games Lynx Sep, 1991 53 out of 100 53
PC Joker DOS Apr, 1992 45 out of 100 45
Your Sinclair Arcade May, 1989 Unscored Unscored


Topic # Posts Last Post
Arcade release date 7 vedder (58561)
Feb 23, 2014


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Contributed to by Lance Boyle (1521), Rik Hideto (464678), etempest (1083), FatherJack (62720), Martin Smith (79254), Terok Nor (32503), LepricahnsGold (142475) and Jeanne (76211)
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