It's unflinchingly hard, unapologetically cheap and just when you think you're getting good with the combos, a multi-boss sequence demoralizes you in that way that you've come to expect from the series. There's a fine line between challenging difficulty and blood-boiling frustration. Depending on who you are, Ninja Gaiden 2 will either respect that line or slice it up into tiny pieces and force feed it to you with bits of broken glass.
So those who aren't down with the difficulty level are going to want to play a game that utilizes the Xbox 360's potential with a balanced difficulty level that compliments the solid gameplay - and thereby restore self esteem - leaving Itagaki's insatiable bloodlust to the hardcore crowd that loves it so.
- Gory, slice and dice combat
- Easy-access sub-menu
- Punishing difficulty makes victory that much sweeter
- Horrible camera that gets stuck behind things
- Lousy level graphics that don't jibe with the pretty-looking gore
- Punishing difficulty makes victory nigh-impossible 7/10