An action adventure based in near future Tokyo, Ninja Blade sees the player take up the swords of a 21st century samurai, called into action when an infestation of parasites turns much of the city’s population into hideous monsters with a taste for human flesh. What follows could have been a truly great game but is let down by some of the dodgiest voice acting this side of Badly Dubbed Porn, along with a clunky control system and a predilection of pre-set moves, whereby you can only clear vast areas of the game by pressing the action buttons in sequence as they appear on-screen: instead of testing your reflexes, more often than not this merely examines your ability to memorise long sequences of button-presses, which becomes decidedly unexciting, very quickly.
That said, the graphics are impressive, with a variety of mutant monsters to cross swords with, and there are some memorable set-piece battles. The action is fast, frantic and unyielding, as legions of nasty mutants try to turn you into mush, but ultimately, Ninja Blade is far too derivative for its own good and while it’s good fun to play for an hour or two, with some of the most OTT action sequences and the most furious button-mashing since Ninety Nine Nights, there’s not enough going on to warrant its completion. Definitely one to rent, rather than buy.