(Atari/Handmade, December 24, 1994)

I'd so hit that!

Whoa, I remember that Kasumi chick. You know the hot underage ninja in the scantily clad blue outfit from the Dead or Alive series and bondage web sites (or so I'm told....)? So did she get her own game on the Atari Jaguar here too? Sadly, the game has nothing to do with her and it's just a very cheap Mortal Kombat rip off. It might be good though. If you judged the book by its cover then Kasumi Ninja would be an excellent game, right? This game is packed with some very realistic backdrops and great looking life like characters plus this Jaguar game also has some rather decent background music which is a very rare thing for a game on this system anyway. So do all these great things add up to a playable game? No way!

In this 2D fighting game by Atari you select from 8 unique warriors in a very choppy 3D room. You can only select from the two palette swapped ninjas at first but you can pick the other 6 characters if you defeat that warrior after you win the fight (even if you killed them in the previous fight). These different opponents come from other time periods and different locations for whatever reason so I guess these are time traveling ninjas. Sure, there are some traditional fighters like you would see in other popular fighting games like a couple of ninjas and a kung fu expert but you also get some other oddball characters like a brawling Scotsman and city women that looks very out of place here. All this fighting is so you can earn the chance to battle this powerful rival ninja master bend on destruction of earth.

Like Mortal Kombat there are some over the top special moves for each fighter like fireballs, teleports, and more plus each fighter also has a secret finishing move to add further insult to injury to a fallen opponent. The Scottish guy even throws fireballs by lifting his kilt up and it looks pretty funny.... at first. It all sounds kind of cool but it's very hard to move each fighter and the overall game is too chunky to control. Only a few fighters are fast enough to be controlled because the fighting system is that bad here plus what's with all the pointless use of blood?

Sure, I like a game to be realistic and all but you can drop buckets of blood here just from a mere punch. There is even blood used in most of the intermission screens where it just dips from the top screen. Honestly we get it, your crappy fighting game has red stuff in it! The digital backgrounds look really awesome and the characters seem decent enough standing still but the animation is choppy in both the 3D dungeon and character movements. The music isn't any better. All you get here is a few monotone soundtracks during the fights that don't sound as good as the intense character selection area.

"Silence before I kill you with my laser beam eyes!" - Morgan Webb

If all that wasn't bad enough you can also forget about finishing this game too because once you defeat the super evil ninja that looks just like a black version of the other two ninjas there is nothing but a really stupid non-ending here for each fighter. It's like the game wasn't even finished. It could have been a great fighter that would have really helped the Jaguar, but it wasn't meant to be. Kasumi Ninja is an extremely limited 2D fighter and a poor man's Mortal Kombat.


*Battery back up game
*Lock out code can be used to block out questionable content.

overall rating: 40/100

Find this game on eBay here!

For 1 or 2 players
Rated (M) for Mature
graphics: 8/10
sound: 6/10
gameplay: 2/10
replay: 4/10

(Ryan Genno) 2007

Other Duds of the Month