Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
Things are going badly, and only one man can save us. And he's not even a proper man - he's a cyborg. What's that, you may well wonder: it's a cybernetic organism, or in English a mixture of man and machine.
Oddly enough, this strange being is also an expert in the martial arts. He can jump, kick, and slash foes with his sword. He also has access to throwing stars and other special weapons. Best of all is the Ninja magical attack - not quite what you'd expect from a robot, but devastating in its effect on the enemy.
Early levels are set in factories and warehouses, with wooden crates and rising platforms to negotiate as well as baddies to zap. Then the action moves to the Bay Area, the Plain, the jungle and the waterfall.
The final two levels are set in a secret base, complete with force fields and tough opponents. Then it's on to meet the final boss, a huge ED209-alike robot with an extendible pincer.
Tokens are liberally scattered throughout the game, giving the metallic black belt extra life, shuriken. bullets and magic, as well as powering his sword up to greater heights of deadliness.
Graphically, Cyber Shinobi isn't bad - or at least it wouldn't be were it not for the horrendously jerky scrolling and wobbly animation. However, the gameplay is poor. It's a very annoying game which is played screen-by-screen; unusual for a horizontal scroller! The game keeps stopping when the baddies appear, and you've got to kill whatever's there before you can progress. It's not a difficult game, but you play it for so little time that the difficulty setting is unimportant. If you want a fast-moving, challenging beat 'em up, wait until anything better than Cyber Shinobi is released.
Could have been very good, but isn't. Jerky graphics and dull game play make Cyber Shinobi one to miss.
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