Tenchu: Shadow Assassins Review
Tenchu: Shadow Assassins box art
System: Wii Review Rating Legend
Dev: Acquire 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Ubisoft 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Feb. 3, 2009 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Mature 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

In rare instances when you find yourself face-to-face with an adversary and also happen to have a katana in your inventory, you're given the opportunity to engage in a little first-person swordplay mini-game that has you blocking incoming attacks by tilting the Wii Remote and delivering blows by flailing about wildly. Like other aspects of the game's control setup, these intense encounters are awkward at first but get easier with practice. The general movement and camera controls can be unwieldy at times, and the game takes on a slow pace to match your inability to move around with any amount of actual speed.

Tenchu: Shadow Assassins screenshot

From the excellent musical score to the nicely detailed characters and level visuals, Shadow Assassins packs a solid presentation that looks good, sounds good, and does a great job enhancing the story themes. Still, there are a few kinks. Slain enemies will occasionally wiggle strangely after death (among other occasional visual glitches), and the enemy dialogue quickly becomes repetitious to a fault, yet the moving story and frequent cutscenes balance this out. Overall, the serious tone and mature content is certainly welcome on the Wii.

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The quality stealth-based gameplay in the main story spans more than 10 missions and is enhanced by dozens of side-quests to explore, hidden items to locate, and other features to dig into. In its early stages, Shadow Assassins has the potential to become frustrating as players become acclimated to the clunky controls and pacing, but the gameplay improves once you overcome these hurdles. The further you delve into the game's entrancing plot and ninja sneakiness, the more you'll come to appreciate its high points. Plus, who doesn't love being a ninja assassin?

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Staff Contributor

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.9
Graphics
Crisp characters and detail environments make for a pleasant ninja excursion.
3.5
Control
There's a lot of maneuvers to learn and the controls can be cumbersome on occasion. They work well, once you get used to them.
4.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The soundtrack is delightful even if the voice work could use a little something.
4.0

Play Value
If you dig a deliberate pace filled with sneakiness and puzzle-like level designs, the stealth gameplay has a lot to offer.

3.9
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Use the Wii Remote for a Complete Ninja Experience: With over 17 historically accurate ninja weapons and tools, you can use your Wii Remote to fight, dash, jump, and kill like a real ninja.
  • Master the Deadly Skills of a Ninja: Move silently, use your environment as camouflage, and kill your targets through a wide variety of stealth assassination techniques.
  • Experience an Epic Adventure: Explore the highly detailed settings of Feudal Japan and experience the story through both elite ninjas, Rikimaru and Ayame.


  • Screenshots / Images
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