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Mr. Gerbik

Stealth
Shinobido 2: Revenge of Zen - from the makers of Tenchu 1

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Must not buy anymore launch titles for Vita. Will be really interested in it at a bargain price, later on, though.

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By which time you'll also know if it's worth bothering with. I'm taking a huge leap of faith in the game and Acquire though, as I'm buying a brand new Vita for it!

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The reviews, so far, really haven't been too bad. Reckon, as a fan, you'll be OK.

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I was torn between this and gaiden, but I went with tecmos game as I still love it

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The reviews, so far, really haven't been too bad. Reckon, as a fan, you'll be OK.

I think so too, as far as I can tell it has the exact same drawbacks as the original Shinobido so no big deal. It's a niche game for sure, but it can be totally engrossing once you get into it. I don't expect everyone to get on with this game or this thread to get much further than 5 or 10 pages tbh!

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Man I'm so gutted this isn't a big console version. :(

The original Shinobido is one of the best stealth games ever, a new one done in a good, modern way it would be incredible.

Son, I am disappoint.

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Man I'm so gutted this isn't a big console version. :(

The original Shinobido is one of the best stealth games ever, a new one done in a good, modern way it would be incredible.

Son, I am disappoint.

Buy a Vita. :eyebrows:

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Yeah Dood, just buy a Vita. It has two analogue sticks and everything! Join ussssssssssss

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Excellent post Mr Gerbik! I bloody loved the PS2 version and as soon as I can afford it I'm getting a Vita just for this.:D

Look forward to your thoughts on it.

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Laine has a great taste in games! :D

I really hope my Vita arrives on Wednesday, can't wait to get stuck in. And if it turns out to be at least as good as the first Shinobido, I can't wait to see how long it takes for Dood to go out and get a Vita! Are we talking about weeks in that case? Days? Hours?

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Yeah, this is the one game that's sold me on the Vita too, although some of the previews have said it's a bit dodgy- but I managed to wring a lot of enjoyment out of the dodgy Tenchu : Time of the Assassins game on the PSP (the one where the draw distance was so bad you couldn't even see across a room... :ph34r: ) so I'm sure I'll be fine with this. One bit stuck out in the Gametrailers review though-

... when blades clash, things can get awkward. You’re eventually given a reversal move can quickly end fights with weaker enemies, but there’s no running away from certain fated confrontations, which are almost always prolonged and clumsy.

- which sounds like there might be boss battles in there. Which would be a real shame because I love the stealth and sneaking side of these games, but absolutely detest any part where you're forced to stand and fight, because it goes against the whole point of it. I'm a ninja, I'm crouching on the rooftops, or hiding in the bushes, or hanging off the ceilings... I'm not battling clumsy controls against some boss man. The only thing people should ever is my sword, seconds before I slit their throat, or my arse as I pathetically run away into the darkness because I've made a mess of things.

edit: oh yeah, one of the other reviews made it a bit clearer... "there are boss battles that require ferocious combat"... :(

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Yeah, this is the one game that's sold me on the Vita too

Hooray! I'm not the only one :D

About the unavoidable boss battles: goddammit, ever since the very first Tenchu on the PS1 way back when I've been saying that they should take the boss battles out of these games or make them susceptible to a one-hit stealth kill to avoid having to fight them. But they never do. Tenchu Z on the 360 was rather good in this regard, 50+ levels of which only two contain boss battles. As always, I save up all the offence items like grenades and such to get past the bosses with as little fuss as possible. Shame that they once again felt the need to put them in there, their lack of confidence to go all-out in the stealth gameplay department is the main thing holding them back from the level of quality of stealth classics like Thief 2.

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Yeah, it's a shame, I agree it feels a little like it's a lack of nerve- that they feel gamers expect big boss battles or they'll be disappointed. For the final one in Tenchu Z I gave up after three or four tries (I had no idea how the direct combat controls really worked) and watched a video on YouTube that had a handy little exploit where you could trick the boss into falling into the river, which he dutifully did. But it was a pain in the neck as the whole lead up to that final battle- creeping through castle grounds, making your way up, was excellent, but there was no in-game reward for silently knocking everyone off along the way- you might as well just make a mad dash for it as you'd still trigger the same cut scene.

I guess what I always wanted to see, if they really had to have boss battles, were ones where your actions up to that point affected it- so if you've successfully slipped in unnoticed, you'd at least be able to launch a sneak attack that would wipe out half the health of the boss or something. Or just kill him stone dead.

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I don't know how I missed the fact that this title was by acquire and the same team that originally did the tenchu titles (god, I loved those on my japanese ps one)

chalk it up as another launch title purchase for me (I think that makes 5-6 now. and while I'm all :omg: about it, my wallet is all :angry:

edit:

just watched the video. when are these western dev houses going to learn and get some 'proper' voice actors? even for the promotional video, this would have carried a lot more weight [with me] had they gone with someone with a ragged/gravely voice

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I don't know how I missed the fact that this title was by acquire and the same team that originally did the tenchu titles (god, I loved those on my japanese ps one)

chalk it up as another launch title purchase for me (I think that makes 5-6 now. and while I'm all :omg: about it, my wallet is all :angry:

I knew it was a good idea to include that tidbit of info in the thread title! :D

edit:

just watched the video. when are these western dev houses going to learn and get some 'proper' voice actors? even for the promotional video, this would have carried a lot more weight [with me] had they gone with someone with a ragged/gravely voice

First thing I'll do is check whether it has a Japanese voices option as the English voice acting does seem to be traditionally atrocious.

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Any update Mr G?

This is literally the only thing tempting me to get a Vita, absolutely loved the tenchu games. I even played the original tenchu 1 directors cut with map pack and map editor (never released outside Japan). I would be tempted to get both original shinobido and the zen sequel on a vita for some excellent stealth action.

well? talk it up for me please!

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Some additional observations: at first it seems like enemies are really dumb and you can approach them rather easily. As the game goes on you'll encounter new enemies however and it turns out that the awareness of each enemy can vary drastically. In the first few levels I could almost run up to the dumb fucks and stab them, Tenchu Z style, but later on I was put in my place when I played a level filled with paranoid merchants. I quickly realized I couldn't approach them from the side as they were constantly looking around and I would get spotted. For those guys I had to either carefully approach them directly from behind, or drop in unannounced from above (wrath of heaven motherfuckers!).

At the moment I'm playing a level where I have to intercept a guarded package being transported, and while it is guarded by the earlier dumb fucks, there are a lot of them. So now I have to go beyond standard Tenchu tactics and apply a bit of Hitman (and this is why I loved the first Shinobido so much) by distracting and luring guards away from the transport by using items. Just now I had killed four dudes at the rear of the transport, managed to lure one of the front guards away into an alley where his throat was mysteriously slit, and distracted the remaining guard at the front so that the guy carrying the package I had to steal was walking alone. Quickly I ran up behind him, but as I had been so busy getting rid of the two guards at the front I hadn't noticed a guard keeping watch further down the street and he saw me run up to the guy carrying the package - spotted! Gutted :( In other words, things are ramping up nicely and I'm looking forward to trying that mission again tomorrow - maybe I have to dabble into a bit of alchemy, or at least the old ninja item shop, to see if I can come up with some other cunning tactics to approach this particular situation.

I'm in love all over again :wub:

Oh and the graphics are great btw! Very atmospheric and colourful, the game looks way better than the PS2 Tenchu and Shinobido games. It looks detailed, solid and smooth, and with a great draw distance. It might not have the jaw-drop effect of the Uncharted and the Wipeout, but that it looks better way better than the PS2 original is great.

Oh and the default first mission you can choose to take involves killing a - presumably evil - merchant :D

Edit: holy fuck 3 in the morning! I guess I better turn off that Vita huh

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Excellent impressions Gerbik :) some of it sounds ace. Shame the gardening has gone though :(

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To be brutally honest, I knew beforehand that a lot of Shinobido fans would be disappointed that the gardening had gone but personally (and this is between you and me) I'm really glad it's gone as I didn't like it at all in the first game - I just wanted to get on with playing the missions! :ph34r:<--never has this smiley been more appropriate

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Great impressions! Never had enough time on the big screen to complete shino 1 but will get this one :) glads its not tenchu 4 again :) will + when not on mobile

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Excellent post. I love threads like this. Great to read even if you have no intention of buying the game.

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To be brutally honest, I knew beforehand that a lot of Shinobido fans would be disappointed that the gardening had gone but personally (and this is between you and me) I'm really glad it's gone as I didn't like it at all in the first game - I just wanted to get on with playing the missions! :ph34r:<--never has this smiley been more appropriate

Whutuff. You're dead to me.

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Things are ramping up a bit. I'm backing Warlord A and constantly fucking over Warlord C... but now I got a hint from my sensei that I should probably take care of Warlord B first. And I should be wary of warlords getting their hands on blueprints and the like with which to increase the strength of their army. However, my favourite Warlord A was complaining about a lack of money so I chose to do a mission which would put some gold in his warchest instead of this other mission which was to prevent Warlord B from getting her hands on some important document.

The mission didn't go too well as I'm now encountering enemies who are very alert and just running up to them from an angle Tenchu Z style doesn't work anymore - they're spotting me left, right and centre if I don't scout and plan head more carefully. I managed to stealth kill most of the enemies in that mission but I fucked up when I was messing around with a wind-up gecko to try and distract the last enemy and had to engage him in battle. Got a lower rating, but what the hell mission complete and level up. But then I got a message that Warlord B got her hands on that document and used it to outfit her army with state of the art bows and arrows, increasing their overall strength! Hmm, not good. Warlord A was happy to get some money though.

One or two missions after that I get the opportunity to steal a blueprint back from Warlord B, which I assume will weaken the strength of her army back down again. Only this mission is a bit hard with the blueprints being escorted by fucking ninja, like 6 or 8 ninja just darting about around the guy carrying the blueprints. And the rest of the level is filled with them too and they have very good hearing as it turns out - no jumping down behind them without them hearing it! So I started thinking a bit and decided I should make more use of the huge amount of available items in the game. Going Hitman 47 as it were. So I noticed that they cross a bridge over a deadly cliff on the way to their destination, and at the start of my next try I ran over there and planted loads of mines on the bridge before they arrived. I observed from a hill overlooking the scene how they were getting blown up constantly as they advanced but while it created chaos and annoyed them a bit, the mines were far too weak to outright kill them :lol: - I need to do moar alchemy for stronger mines! I also tried throwing a powerful confusion grenade which I got from Warlord A for being so awesome on loads of missions and that seemed to work very well - all the enemies caught in the smoke were dazed which allowed me to one-hit kill them! As I tried to run away with the blueprints I got spotted by another ninja however - I was playing very recklessly by that point - and he killed me :lol:

I'm retreating to my trusty ninja village for a bit to think things over! Oh and I just got a message that there are now also enemies called Yojimbo roaming about, and they're supposed to really tough and hard to sneak up on! But not as hard as fucking bears apparently but so far I've not done a mission in which I'm asked to go kill one - but I do have some salmon in my inventory and there were some hints being dropped that the salmon, or something made from the salmon in alchemy, could be used to lure or distract a bear.

So things are definitely heating up, the game has opened up brilliantly and I'm loving it. Finally another Tenchu-style ninja game and it's one of the better ones :wub: Again, it's an acquired taste and you should only spend your hard-earned cash if you like Tenchu/Shinobido games to begin with and you have the patience for stealth gameplay and putting up with some basic flaws to get to the raw brilliance.

Dood, you may hate me and that's fine, but you need to play this game :)

Edit: Summing up - Acquire still has it :D

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If/when I eventually get my Vita I will definitely be buying this game thanks to your write up. The last one I played was Tenchu Stealth Assassins on the PS2, which took me a while to get into but when I did felt like one of the most empowering games I'd played.

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I love how everyone's Vita purchase goes never/ if/ when/ got one! in the space of a day.

Great reports on the game there. When it's cheaper and I've gotten through all the Vita treats I have, I shall get it, for sure.

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