Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master

Arcade 1993 Dos SEGA Oriental Action

Ninja masters!

The Shinobi series is another of Sega's classic arcade hits that stands alongside Golden Axe and Streets of Rage as one of its finest and most enduring franchises. Although Revenge of Shinobi often gets most of the plaudits when it comes to the series, this is actually the best of the lot and provides enough arcade/platforming action to keep you going for some time. Although the format here hasn't changed much since the original days, it's the sheer execution that makes up for any lack of innovation and as far as these things go, this is a cracker. Once again, you're in control of Joe Musashi, legendary ninja warrior, and this time you're going up against your old foe, Neo Zeed. The gameplay is essentially the same as usual, this being a side-scrolling actioner where you take out the bad guys with an array of ninja weapons before taking on the formidable end-of-level bosses. To mix things up a bit, you even get to ride a horse and go surfing. Return of the Ninja Master might not be complex or deep but for pure arcade thrills of a kind you don't get any more, this is hard to beat. It looks absolutely gorgeous, with those lovely Mega Drive-era visuals just leaping off the screen and with heaps of cool environments and characters to appreciate. The action comes at you hard and fast while the controls are absolutely pitch perfect, making you feel like a ninja yourself as you hack and slash your way through the bag guys. Throw in the slick sound and you're left with another great example of Sega doing what it did best.

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