Yasai Ninja is a hack & slash developed by Reco Techonology. It is set in an alternate feudal Japan where all of the country’s inhabitants are vegetables. The game follows Kaoru Tamanegi, an onion samurai on a quest for vengeance and his hungry companion Broccoli Joe. The premise may sound appealing to some however, Yasai Ninja is anything but appealing.
The story is simple as it follows Kaoru on a quest for vengeance against his now evil leader. The nunchuk-wielding Broccoli Joe accompanies Kaoru with a less noble quest of finding something to eat. There is not much else to say about the story. Dialogue is just as simple as the story although it attempts to be comedic at times.
Yasai Ninja’s visuals are most likely the best part of the game, although that’s not saying much. The environments do sometimes resemble feudal Japan, but they generally find themselves to be dull and repetitive. The color palette usually involves a poor use of darker and grayish colors, which only makes the game harder to play through. Character models sport brighter colors that allow them to stand out against the environment, but are ruined by the fact that almost all of the enemies are cucumbers. The camera is frustrating as it is constantly shaking and shifting all over the place.
Yasai Ninja possesses a terrible combat system that is clunky and unresponsive. Players will find themselves mashing square, considering there is a two second delay between a button press and attack on screen. There is no point in attempting to block enemy attacks because the delay makes it difficult to do so. Players have the ability to switch between Kaoru and Joe, but the only point in switching between the two is to use the puzzle devices exclusive to each character. Puzzles are simply a means of filling in the void between each wave of cucumbers to slice up.
It would have been better if Reco Technology just left the game with no sound at all, but instead there is a looping soundtrack of traditional Japanese music in the background that does nothing to improve the already stale atmosphere. Sounds during combat sequences do not correlate to what’s happening on the screen and they sometimes just cut off completely.
There is not much else to say about Yasai Ninja and certainly not anything good to say. The story and dialogue is boring and simple. Visuals are rarely appealing. The combat is clunky and unresponsive resulting in this hack & slash becoming a simple button masher. Sounds are terrible to a degree where the game is better off without them. Ultimately, it is best if players avoid playing Yasai Ninja.
Disclaimer: Game copy supplied by developer/publisher
This game was reviewed on the PS4