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Game #5115
Hall of Belated Fame Inductee  Nikujin    View all Top Dogs in this genre
Action   Platformer

Rating: 8.53 (15 votes)

Nikujin box cover

Nikujin screenshot
Nikujin is a fun ninja freeware platformer from Ikiki, the lone Japanese designer who brought us Teppoman, among other cool 2D side-scrolling games. Nikujin retains the same minimalistic approach as Ikiki's previous games: bare-bones graphics in smooth but simplistic anime style and sparse levels. However, it is a much more complex, difficult, and ultimately fun game. You can not only jump in this game, but also scale walls and run fast – in true ninja fashion. Also, like the Thief games, the key to winning in Nikujin is not to kill enemies, but sneak or run past them. Since you have no weapon to speak of, you have to be careful not to alert the enemies to your position, lest they come running at you with the sword. You CAN actually kill enemies by jumping on them, Super Mario style, but you can only do that with unalerted enemies, and this maneuver is unnecessary in most cases.

Another design feature that makes Nikujin a lot of fun is creative physical puzzles. Since you are not a gun-toting Rambo guy who solves every problem by blasting everything in sight, you have to figure out indirect ways to overcome obstacles. That requires a mix of careful observation – particularly of enemy behavior, accurate movement, and precise timing. Although the game is fun, it gets very difficult far too soon – specifically, from level two onward. Already before you are used to the controls, you will have to pull off a complicated series of movements to pass by dozens of enemies undetected. This means that while Nikujin will appeal to all action fans, it could probably be finished only by a handful of expert gamers. Highly recommended, but not for those who are easily frustrated ;)

Reviewed by: Underdogs
Designer: Ikiki
Developer: Freeware
Publisher: Freeware
Year: 2004
Software Copyright: Ikiki
Theme: Oriental
None that we know of
System Requirements: Windows XP
Where to get it:
Related Links:  
If you like this game, try: Tango Strike, Legend of Shadow, Super Secret Ninja

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