Hey look everyone, I'm back! It really has been forever since I got something going on the portal. Instead of the editorials that you guys have been seeing, I wanted to try and start a new article series, which I have penned Games You SHOULDN'T Buy!, which I will call GYSB for short. I had this idea rolling around my pipeline of article ideas and things for quite some time but it never really had time to implement... until now! Without further ado, let's get into the fun stuff with the first article about Ninja Gaiden III! Ninja Gaiden III was the successor to Ninja Gaiden II, released back in 2009 for the XBOX 360. Ninja Gaiden II was, for me, one of my favorite games, because I had beaten it on its hardest difficulty, despite my brain's desire to smash itself in with a heavy object. The game was really well done, there was an element of strategy to the title that required the player to think a little bit and plan their moves to not end up dead, because we all love seeing Game Over on our screen, right? Ninja Gaiden II was loved by fans for its amazing visuals, the bloodiness, and the intense difficulty that would make even the worst masochists think twice. In comes Ninja Gaiden III, something I remember being hyped about. This title was different, though. It was the first title in the franchise to not be helmed by Tomonobu Itagaki, who had left Team Ninja. The first trailers had hit, which actually looked... pretty good. Then the game itself got released and... it was such a massive disappointment. The visuals were still there, somewhat, in a grittier fashion, but it still looked like Ninja Gaiden. It felt nothing like the game I spent many months trying to beat. In this title, Ryu Hayabusa, the protagonist of the title, is armed only with a sword and heads to London to neutralize a threat. There, he encounters a guy known as the Regent of the Mask, who leaves a curse on Ryu's arm. His sword is absorbed into the arm, and his arm turns red and quite ugly. Said Regent declares that he will destroy the world in seven days. First off, the plot itself felt really corny. Ninja Gaiden II was better but by no means believable. This title felt unbelievable and silly. It was so cliché with the world's destruction plot and the Regent of the Mask figure wasn't intimidating at all. Second off, the developers wanted to make the game easier in order to make it more accessible to their audiences. In doing so, Team Ninja succeeded in alienating their veteran fans as the game became too easy and became more along the lines of Dynasty Warriors. Difficulties included Hero Mode, which gave automatic guard and evasion assistance to let players engross themselves in the story, Normal Mode, which focuses on gameplay, and Hard Mode, which was a more difficult mode. The difficulties were not really increasing, it was just that monsters had more health and needed more time to cut down, which I absolutely hated. Proceeding through the title felt linear, as it was just roving between screens of enemies, which halted progress until they were destroyed. It became a hack and slash where the player could get away with spamming the same button over and over again. Boss battles became cinematic sequences, with the introduction of the Quick Time Event system, which momentarily halts the battle to force the player to input a command in order to proceed with the attack. This dumbed down the boss sequences significantly and oftentimes I found myself leaving battles without a scratch. Previous mechanics, such as Dragon Statues and Muramasa's shop, had been removed in favor of a more revamped system that autosaves and automatically upgrades the swords along the way. Ryu's arsenal also was severely depleted. In the previous title, Ryu had access to many different weapons to account for play styles and to different enemy types. In this title, Ryu only gets a sword. The many ninpo spells from the previous title? Gone, replaced with a fire dragon attack that decimates everything on screen and heals most of the health bar back, further removing the challenge. In danger? Quick, use your ninpo and heal it all back! The previous title offered no such amenities. I'll admit, the replacement ninpo was a bit gratifying, but at the same time left me feeling empty. Ninja Gaiden III adds an interesting element that feels very out of place in the franchise - humanity. One of the developers had commented on this, and wanted players to feel what cutting down a body felt like, by introducing a Steel on Bone technique. Dismemberment, a staple and glorious part of the last title, had been removed... to pleading enemies begging not to be killed. There is an inherent karma philosophy here in which killing enemies would force Ryu to bear a burden, but for a game that glorified on violence in the first place, it felt jarring. And there we have it. What was supposed to be my glee in bringing back the glory days of a great game ended up as a return two days later as I had been sickened by the title. I could really only recommend the title if you have money to burn and like brainless hack and slash titles, but for hardcore fans of the franchise you will most likely end up disappointed. The sequel, called Ninja Gaiden Razor's Edge, attempts to polish the flaws that this title had, but in the end it did not really satisfy the crowd clamoring for the days of Ninja Gaiden II. Also! This will be an article series that is similar to GBATemp Recommends, which means that you, the user, can contribute to this series. Please forward me your ideas through PM and I will perform some minor edits (no content changes, I promise!) and you will get your chance to appear on the front page! My only requirement is that you have a solid grasp of the English language and its grammatical components. I will not be accepting entries that require loads of work to fix, and I do reserve the right to deny submissions. This should be handled by you! Let me know what you think about this series, too! I could use some feedback! I will try to keep the series consistent so that there is a consistent flow of material.