Mixed or average reviews - based on 43 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 43
  2. Negative: 11 out of 43
Buy On
  1. May 15, 2012
    Boy, this game is a big disappointment. When an established franchise like Ninja Gaiden sinks this deep, it would be wise for the developer to turn off its life support. The game is graphically strong, but fails on every other level. An absolute shame.
  2. Mar 29, 2012
    Even though Ninja Gaiden 3 is definitely a watered down experience in comparison to the previous two games, it still sits well above other mediocre action games available on current-gen hardware. And while I can't help but feel massively disappointed with the final product, I'll allow that the game is going to be far more accessible than it's ever been, and there's little in the way of a difficulty hurdle if you play through the default setting.
  3. games(TM)
    Apr 17, 2012
    A truly disappointing sequel. [Issue#121, p.104]
  4. Apr 13, 2012
    The franchise has been murdered by Team Ninja itself. Every little thing that made the previous games so great has disappeared in Ninja Gaiden 3.
  5. Apr 6, 2012
    The ENTIRE single player experience can be viewed as such: Enter room, clear room of enemies, enter next room, clear enemies, enter... You get the picture. Boss battles do help to break up the monotony, but like I said before, they are crazy easy, oft repeated and often just plain stupid.
  6. Mar 27, 2012
    Ninja Gaiden III's overly cinematic action and dramatic storyline soon falls into abstruse repetition, but in pleasing those not accustomed to the series' hardcore action roots, Team Ninja inadvertently ripped the spine out of the near perfection combat that the series' gameplay structure was founded upon.
  7. Mar 26, 2012
    If a game is going to force you to play like an a**hole, it should have a stronger reason for doing so than 'You're a ninja, duh.' Ninja Gaiden 3 has none.
  8. Mar 22, 2012
    Feels like a great game that wasn't finished. It's not that the game's too short; it's that it's too sparse. More enemy types, weapons, and spells could have really fleshed this out into a hack-and-slash classic. As is, it feels like a demo stretched into a full length game -- and a short one at that.
  9. Mar 19, 2012
    Ninja Gaiden 3 is a gash on the face of the franchise and one of the worst games the action genre has yet suffered...It's a nightmare that's as easy as it is uninteresting, and it abandons what used to work for awful new ideas that don't work together. Under no circumstance should you ever waste your time on this self-indulgent and abysmal wreck.
  10. Mar 26, 2012
    I appreciate Team Ninja's attempts at revisionism and editorial design, but I think most Ninja Gaiden fans- myself included- would have been happier with an elaborate, over-the-top design like the first two games rather than such a pared down, over-simplified one.
  11. 25
    Nothing more than a major step backwards for the franchise. With a poor camera, tacked on QTEs and a laughable story that takes itself far too seriously, Ninja Gaiden 3 is far and away the worst game I've played this year.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 155 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 52 out of 155
  2. Negative: 73 out of 155
  1. Mar 20, 2012
    I'm a fan of action games. I love games like God of War and Devil May Cry were your given a budging weapon, like a sword or duel-wieldingI'm a fan of action games. I love games like God of War and Devil May Cry were your given a budging weapon, like a sword or duel-wielding daggers, and force you to kill X amount of enemies in the most bloody, over-the-top violence that only video games can do. One of my favorite action franchises has to be Ninja Gaiden. Now Ninja Gaiden 3 has been released and it's the first in the series to not be any fun at all. The story of Ninja Gaiden 3 has Ninja-badass-extraordinaire, Ryu Hayabusa, as he joins the Japan Self-Defense Force to save London from an unknown terrorist group. While there, he's confronted by someone calling himself "the Regent of the Mask," who forces Ryu's trusty Sword, The Dragon Sword, to be absorbed into his arm, cursing him to feel the anger, pain, and suffering it's dished out over the years. Ryu must now go on a quest to find the Regent of the Mask to undo the curse and save the world from him. Ninja Gaiden games have always had plots so ridiculous, they're fun to experience, but the plot here is so ridiculous it's just downright bad. It tries to play itself straight and serious, rather than accepting the goofy camp, and the results are poor. The story is so badly written, you'll want to skip every cutscene as it goes off into generic and poorly done action movie story plots. It shame, as the idea of Ryu feeling the suffering of his enemies could have been interesting, but it sadly comes off as a missed opportunity as he just goes off and kills more enemies. The game looks decent enough. The game runs on the same engine that powered Ninja Gaiden 2 and Ninja Gaiden Sigma, but somehow looks dated. Animations are fluid and fast passed and there's a lot of blood being spewed by enemies, but the frame rate drops here and there, the environments are bland and uncreative, and invisible walls are abound. Enemy variety is also lacking as you'll mostly be facing the same enemy types over and over again. Yeah, they may look different, but most fall in the same pattern of weak enemy soldier or ninja to enemy soldier or ninja with something like a gun, rocket launcher, jet pack, shield, and magic. Some of the bosses look cool, but you'll be fighting Robot Spiders, T-Rexes, and Helicopter to the point where you'll be sick of them. The audio fares a little better, but not that much. The music is your typical techno punk rock and it's completely forgettable. One the positive side, the voice acting is decent, but enemies will constantly yelling at you to the point where you'll want an option to mute them, which there isn't. Ninja Gaiden has always been about razor sharp, fast passed combat with difficult enemy A.I that could take out 2/3's of your health bar in mere seconds. Here, the developers took out the difficult A.I, and replaced it with dumb as all hell A.I. Enemies try to attack you, but you can dodge and counterattack so easy it's not even funny. You also have so much health, and when you use your magic attack, your health regenerates. In past games, you could switch up your weapons by purchasing new ones at a shop or get them on the way, weapons like Talons, nun chucks, battle staffs, scythes and more. But no, all you get is a sword and an auto-targeting bow and arrow. You also can use your Magic attack, which is just a dragon is made of fire that eats most enemies. It's cool at first, but loses its appeal as you're forced to use it multiple times. Outside of that, that's it for weapons. Nothing more, nothing less. There are weapons coming in the form of DLC at the time this is being written, but there's no excuse to have like that. Either give me the weapons through game progression, or don't at all. It's insulting that new weapons aren't in the finished product, and even more insulting that you have to wait to download them. Level design is even worse, as all you'll be doing for 8 hours is walk down a path, get stuck in area till you kill x number of enemies, and boss fights that are just "hit the glowing weak point x amount of times." Ninja Gaiden 3 has all but lost the essence of the series in an attempt to streamline the gameplay to make things more accessible for the casual audience. However, the creators streamlined too much for its own good, and have created a soulless, repetitive, and just plain boring action game. Full Review »
  2. Mar 20, 2012
    As a Ninja gaiden fan this is a major disappointment. I am so angry and sad they killed this game. Everything what made NG and NG2 good gamesAs a Ninja gaiden fan this is a major disappointment. I am so angry and sad they killed this game. Everything what made NG and NG2 good games is removed, and what they have added is dull, like stupid kunai climbs (30 or more), QTE and a dull stupid non ninja story. I was really bored when playing this game. I was glad when I finished it. I will never pop it in my console again. Full Review »
  3. Mar 20, 2012
    Poorly designed casual trash. This is the Cars 2 of Team Ninja. Ninja Gaiden is terrible without Itagaki, let's hope Nu-Team Ninja doesn't doPoorly designed casual trash. This is the Cars 2 of Team Ninja. Ninja Gaiden is terrible without Itagaki, let's hope Nu-Team Ninja doesn't do the same to the Dead or Alive franchise. Full Review »