NinjaBoy review (iOS / Universal)

August 7, 2012

“You’re simply the best, better than all the rest”

10 word description: Puzzle platformer. Avoid traps, collect stars, solve puzzles. 80 levels.

10 word review: Destroys the majority of iPhone games. Addictive, imaginative ninja fun.

Red tripwires = death … until you get an outfit that disables them

You will like this if you enjoy: Challenging, imaginative platform games. Being surprised to find that it is actually possible to have tilt control in a platform game and that it works really well!

These green guys are only dangerous if they’re looking in your direction

The good news: Possibly the best implementation of tilt control in a platform game that I have ever seen. I don’t like tilt control in platform games, but this works so well it’s hard to imagine playing it any other way. Very imaginative and challenging puzzle elements and level design. A lot of useful upgrades in the upgrade shop and no IAPs at all! A whole lot of fun – seriously, LOTS of fun. Nice graphics and sounds – almost forgot to mention that! It loads very quickly. And … there are 3 separate save slots.

You can drop DOWN through GREEN traps and jump UP through BLUE traps. Doing anything else = death

The bad news: A few minor issues, but nothing to put anyone off getting this game: Tilting on iPad is, as always, not quite as much fun as on the smaller devices due to the size of the iPad. No Game Center – I hardly ever care, but this game would work really well with GC achievements and leaderboards. There are a couple of “please rate” and “share” message pop-ups but, once you respond to them (even if you don’t actually rate or share), they go away and don’t come back.

You only get one chance at each end-of-level coin challenge – win or lose, it’s up to you

Arcadelife verdict: I missed a couple of days posting reviews on here, mostly because I’ve been playing this game so much. I’ve now beaten the final boss so I think I’m in a fairly good position to be able to offer a full and honest review of NinjaBoy! It’s bloody brilliant! I went in thinking stuff like, “Oh great, a platform game with tilt controls – I bet I hate it” and “Another Doodle Jump clone … yawn”. It’s so nice to be so utterly, appallingly wrong about a game.

They don’t call this the Unicycle of Doom, but I thought it sounded cool

From the gentle tutorial, through the platform environment of the upgrade shop, to the very last set of levels, NinjaBoy is a constant source of fun, challenge and memorable moments. Saving up for a new outfit (with some great perks) adds to the entertainment. Once you have your new gear, some of the earlier levels can completely change for you as your new perks disable specific traps or give you new abilities. The best gear in the shop requires stars and Grand Master achievements that are earned by beating levels in the best way, but the best gear is not needed to reach the end of the game.

My white suit is impervious to red tripwires … of course, there aren’t any in this level

NinjaBoy should be in Apple’s New & Noteworthy and it should be being bought and played by everyone who likes a bit of challenge and a lot of fun in their iPhone games. If, like me, you think you won’t get on with tilt control in a platform game, just buy NinjaBoy and be very pleasantly surprised.

I killed ’em all. It was fun. If I wanted to, I could use the green guy’s big stomach as a trampoline

Overall – contender for platform game of the year for me. I don’t need to say any more, do I?

Find a level where you can do this, then repeat it to quickly earn lots of gold

Arcadelife rating

Visuals – 9.5/10
Audio – 9.5/10
Controls – 9.5/10
Content – 9/10
Fun – 10/10
Final rating – 95/100

Rating categories explained here.
Version reviewed by Arcadelife is 1.01
iTunes link

2 Ton Studios website link

Arcadelife played and reviewed this game on:
4th gen iPod Touch (iOS 5.1.1)
iPad (iOS 5.1.1)


One comment

  1. Arcadelife, you rock!

    Firstly, you went out on a limb and gave us an awesome review before anyone else. Secondly, you totally got what we were trying to do with NinjaBoy: it’s controls, challenge layering, old school direction, mechanics. It’s all a little subtle. We thought that was a good thing 🙂 … you were the first to “get it” … and we really really appreciate it.

    @Arcadelife Fans – NinjaBoy will be getting a content update soon, the following are likely to get in there:

    – GameCenter leaderboards, achievements, etc
    – New story area(s)
    – Ninja suit specific areas; unlock a suit, unlock a specific area
    – New abilities, obstacles, challenges and monsters
    – Cave Story style easter eggs

    Cheers and thanks again!

    2 Ton Studios

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