Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 takes place before the classic Ninja Gaiden games on the NES. Though there is a story that is about Ryu Hayabusa of the Dragon clan racing to retrieve a demon statue and avenge the death of his father, the most important thing you need to take away from it, and the main thing it has to offer, is that killing things as a highly skilled ninja with an arsenal of highly effective but conventional weapons and magic is very fun. For the PlayStation 3 version of the game, developer Team Ninja and director/producer Yosuke Hayashi are aiming to refine and expand on Ninja Gaiden II. The approach is fueled in part by the feedback provided by fans after playing it on the Xbox 360 and the team's desire to create the best game it can. On the story side, Sigma 2 will tell the story seen in Ninja Gaiden II on the Xbox 360 and will also add in new story elements tied to the new playable characters.
Yosuke Hayashi was the director of the original Ninja Gaiden Sigma, and was charged with Sigma 2 after Tomonobu Itagaki quit Team Ninja.
This version is not a port, but a complete reworking with online co-op with the new playable characters. The new playable characters are all female and should be familiar to fans of the series and of Tecmo's Dead or Alive. The first is Ayane, the purple-haired ninja from the Dead or Alive series of fighting games, who will come packing her own unique moves, weapons, magical attacks, and provocatively placed butterfly accessory. The second new character is Momiji, a character that has migrated over from the Nintendo DS's Ninja Gaiden: Dragon Sword. She will bring her own arsenal of abilities and weapons to the fray. Both characters will be integrated into the original story, which will branch in new off to follow their adventures. Rachel from the first Ninja Gaiden Sigma has also been confirmed to be playable. Not to be outdone in the new content department, Ryu will face off against new enemies and bosses with some new weapons tossed in to help deal with the new foes.
Aside from just new playable characters, Sigma 2 will also feature an all-new online co-op mode that lets you and a friend team up to work your way through more than 30 challenge stages, which can be played in one of four difficulty settings. Your performance can be ranked and uploaded to leader boards so you can see how you stack up against the world via PSN. The stages will be a mix of original areas and those seen in the single-player game, which are being redone for co-op play.
Other Changes and Updates
A good amount of work has been put into refining the gameplay. The game's camera is being tweaked based on user feedback and now you will also get additional cues on where to go next from your playable character because your character's head will look off in the direction in which you're supposed to go. In general, Team Ninja is aiming to make the game smoother and more polished in all respects. Sigma 2 is making use of an enhanced version of the graphics engine used for the original game. The game is aiming to surpass the visual quality of the last game by blending new tech into the original engine. The results so far are impressive and bode well for the game's final release.
Sigma 2 will feature Trophy support that will make the player have to play both the single player experience as well as the co-op if they intend to get all the available Trophies. You'll now be able to look back on all the work in stat form, thanks to an in-depth stat-tracking feature that will keep tabs on like the number of enemies you've killed, character effectiveness, preferred weapons and so on. The mission mode from Ninja Gaiden 2 has been replaced with Team Missions. You and either an AI partner of your choice or a friend will fight your way through many different challenges. Lastly, Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 will feature some Sixaxis support but not with the Ninpo feature like in the first game. Instead you will be able to shake the breasts of the female characters, this adds no gameplay advantage but is amusing.
Team Ninja has expressed there interest in bringing new and worthwhile additions of this game via DLC. These are the DLC items that have come available thus far.
- November 12th 2009 - Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Costume Pack - $3.99 - This pack includes one additonal costume for all four playable characters. The white preorder costume for Ryu, a business women outfit for Rachel, a traditional outfit worn during festivals in Tokyo for Momiji, and a outfit for Ayane which was inspired by a carnival in Venice.
During the September 18th monologue of The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien, there was a joke made about the game's new breast jiggling feature. Although the game was not referred to by name, but simply as a new PlayStation 3 game.
As of October 2009, the game has a Metacritic score of 84 putting it higher than Ninja Gaiden II.