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Game info

Ninja Spirit

Ninja Spirit
GenreArcade Action
DeveloperIrem Software
Reviewed byndial
Ninja Spirit is an action platform game originally released in 1988 for the arcades and later converted to the Commodore Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Commodore 64, Game Boy, ZX Spectrum, Virtual Console and NEC PC-Engine/Turbografx-16 home systems.
You are a young ninja named Moonlight, who lost his father from a mysterious half-man half-beast creature! You begin your quest to avenge your father's death and fight your way through an "alternative" feudal Japan. Ninja Spirit is divided into seven different stages like forests, wastelands, swamps, temples and even rock cliffs. On each stage you need to find the way to its exit where you will confront a powerful level boss. Moonlight carries a magical sword called "Righteous Cloud" which can slash into pieces anything and everything that moves around him. During your quest, you will find some extra weapons including the "Swirling Leaf" (a type of shuriken), the "Bamboo Thunder" (a type of bomb), and the "Rising Dragon" (a Kusarigama). There are also several power-up items to collect like the one that unleashes multiple ninja ghosts that assist you during battles. The most unique feature of the game is the platform version of Gradius Options -the aforementioned ghost ninjas that mimic your moves and add greatly to your attacking prowess. Ninja Spirit is certainly a more advanced ninja-action game than Shinobi or Kaze Kiri and surely worths to add it to your collection.

The PC Engine Ninja Spirit version features great sprite animations with detailed characters and backgrounds, although its rather dark colors. There is also a pretty smart dual playfield parallax scrolling effect. The game's sound is great and features some "catchy" Chinese-style tunes and impressive sound effects, that unfortunately get a bit repetitive after a while.
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Gameplay sample
Hardware information

PC-Engine / TurboGrafx-16 / TurboDuo

PC-Engine / TurboGrafx-16 / TurboDuoCPU: HuC6280 8bit at 3.6MHz
GRAPHICS: Dual 16-bit GPUs (HuC6260 Video Color Encoder, HuC6270A Video Display Controller), 64KB VRAM,
482 colors at once out of 512, 64 hardware sprites,
Supports: 256 x 256 to 320x256 flicker free interlaced screen resolution.
A 512x256 mode is possible through fiddling with registers, but not
SOUND: Capable of generating clear digitized sounds and harmonized music. Use of "Turbo Booster" add-on, could generate stereo sound.
The PC-Engine / TurboGrafx-16 / TurboDuo (default) color palette
9-bit RGB 512-color palette (482 on-screen)
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