Ninja Gaiden 3
The Ninja Gaiden franchise is a bit of an anomaly in today's gaming world. A classic NES franchise that seemingly died off in the 16-bit era, only to be revived on the original Xbox in grand fashion, followed by a success of updates and sequels. It's not often that a game series can lay dormant for so long, only to return so triumphantly, but, with Team Ninja at the helm, the new games pushed the boundaries of the ninja subgenre. While the classic titles and the ones adapted for modern console generations have very little in common, there were two ties that bind them; the main character, Dragon Ninja Ryu Hayabusa, and their patience crippling difficulty. Only one of those returns in the series' latest release, Ninja Gaiden 3.
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It's a pretty busy week for new releases as we get our first Resident Evil game of 2012, our second Silent Hill title, and a second sequel to Ninja Gaiden. We've got videos and details for the new games after the jump.
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Ninja Gaiden 3

Every single "Ninja Gaiden" game (and yes I'm counting the '80s originals), has been really, really difficult. I'll freely admit that I was forced to dial down the difficulty to sub-Normal for 2008's "Ninja Gaiden 2," and that was supposed to be one of the easier ones! Clearly there's an audience of hardcore gamers who are willing to die on the game's first boss 16 or 17 times, but I am not in that audience. No, I'm outside, trying to score a lower difficulty setting off the nearest scalper.

It appears that the departure of Tomonobu Itagaki from Team Ninja has heralded a new age for the franchise, as Team Ninja has decided to include a mode in "Ninja Gaiden 3" for people like me.

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"Dead or Alive" is such a weird series. What started out as a fast-paced 3D fighting game from Team Ninja somehow morphed into this franchise about women with ridiculous breast physics. Few other developers can claim they took a fighting genre title and somehow spun the story off wherein a main character tricks women into vacationing on an island – and playing bikini volleyball.

Regardless, "Dead or Alive 5" is on its way, and there's no immediate signs of volleyball or shopping.

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I've been hearing some grumbling around E3 this year in regards to "Ninja Gaiden 3." I overheard someone yesterday saying, "They've ruined it; The game is just full of quick-time events." That sounded pretty awful, but I tried to enter my hands-on time with Ryu Hyabusa today with an open mind. My hesitation quickly turned into dread, unfortunately, when the game immediately started giving me on-screen prompts to mash the X-button to pull off an execution.

The good news is, after speaking to a Team Ninja representative this morning, this entire hubbub over "Ninja Gaiden" going "God of War" may just be a huge misunderstanding.

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ninja gaiden 3

There isn't even an announced release date yet for "Ninja Gaiden 3," but rest assured it is coming. Team Ninja needs to give fans some time to replace all of those smashed controllers that were victims of the first two games' exceedingly high level of difficulty. It may be coming sooner than you think, however, as "NG3" director Yosuke Hayashi dropped a few hints about the game's multiplayer component in a recent interview.

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Despite losing their leader, Tomonobu Itagaki, in 2008, Team Ninja has soldiered on. The developer's last big release was "Metroid: Other M," the 3rd-person Wii installment, but in terms of their own franchises, it has been mostly ports and updates to old games since Itagaki's departure. "Ninja Gaiden" is arguably the biggest of these franchises, and it looks like we won't have to wait too long to discover what the future has in store for Ryu and his band of ninjas. A new trailer was released today which promises the unveiling of the next "Ninja Gaiden" game at E3 2011 in June.

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Ninja Gaiden 3

Initially, Team Ninja made it sound though we were going to have to wait until 2011 to hear more about "Ninja Gaiden 3." A few more sketchy details have emerged, however, including the fact that a prototype of the game exists and TN wants to take the series back to its roots.

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Ninja Gaiden 3

Another old name resurfaced alongside Frank West in Tokyo Game Show news this week as Team Ninja broke out a piece of artwork to show that "Ninja Gaiden 3" is going to happen. Just don't expect to hear much more about the project until sometime in 2011.

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