Reviews and Problems with Tenchu: Return from Darkness
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Tenchu: Return from Darkness – Review
8 December 2004
Excerpt: Once a staple of the 8- and 16-bit eras of gaming, the ninja fell out of favor during the reign of Sony's PlayStation. Why remains a mystery, but it seemed like the ninja game had gone the way of the ninja film (a subgenre that was quite popular with B-movie fans in the mid-1980s). Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the ninja game popped back to life in the current generation.
Excerpt: There are games where you play as a ninja and then there are games where you play at being a ninja. While the recently release of Ninja Gaiden may allow players to kill a lot of people as the ninja Ryu, Tenchu: Return From Darkness is all about being a ninja. For those not familiar, Return From Darkness is an enhanced port of the original PS2 Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven .
Pros: Great ninja-oriented stealth, Lots of missions and multiple guard layouts, Online and multiplayer modes are a nice extra, Excellent music
Cons: Enemy AI is dated, Camera is still fidgety, Graphics are showing their age
Excerpt: So, what do Xbox owners get for their patience? First and foremost is Xbox Live support. While the PS2 version featured a two-player split-screen mode with deathmatch and co-op options, the Xbox versions takes multiplayer online with Xbox Live support. The co-op mode is excellent but only supports two players and, after awhile, the smallish levels can feel a bit constrained.
Conclusion: Activision and K2 had got it right this time. The answer is “yes” and “no”. Though Tenchu: Return From Darkness (T:RFD) at moments reminded me just why I loved the original so much, mostly it felt like a further re-hashing of game play elements that have since grown tiresome. Worse, T:RFD features the worst camera in the series, which makes playing the game really frustrating at times.
Excerpt: This game has several strikes against it. It's behind the technology curve, it's not original, although the PS2 version does have some added levels. It's camera is obnoxious, with no radar to make up for the lack of peripheral vision, it's level design is convoluted, not too mention the A.I. tells the bad guys it's fine to step off a ledge that's higher then they are tall.
Excerpt: Like its PS2 brethren, Tenchu: Return from Darkness offers the player the option to hide in the shadows as either the more-powerful male, Rikamaru, or the quicker female, Ayame. Both hail from the Azuma clan. Once the player chooses a character, RfD offers a lengthy single-player campaign, including a handful of levels not seen in its PS2 predecessor. Unfortunately, not all of the translation went that well.
Excerpt: In 1998, Activision released Tenchu: Stealth Assassins, a title which helped usher in the current covert action gaming craze and revolutionized the video game ninja in a number of ways. It introduced two heroes, the reserved Rikimaru and the effusive Ayame. Members of the honorable Azuma ninja clan, the shadowy duo performed a number of tasks, including assassinations on evil or corrupt men across the countryside.