Scouting Classics: Mystical Ninja starring Goemon

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"Although I haven’t played the game for almost half a decade now, I can still remember the songs, bosses and noises each character made when they jumped and attacked"

Mystical Ninja: Starring Goemon was a quirky title that popped up in the late 90’s on Nintendo 64.  Although it wasn’t the first in the series, (It was in fact the fifth major release for the Go for it: Goemon series, or Ganbare Goemon as the Japanese would say) it was a major landmark on Nintendo's console: interesting characters and abilities, a strong Japanese-inspired environment and memorable upbeat music.  As an open world, well at the time anyway, with multiple characters, a simple and fast-paced fighting system and funky weapons/skills, this title really was a 10/10 for the fifth generation.  Although I haven’t played the game for almost half a decade now, I can still remember the songs, bosses and noises each character made when they jumped and attacked (especially a character named Ebisumaru - the blatant comic relief).


The localisation for the game was slightly flawed with a few missed spellings and awkward translations. But this was humorous and entertaining in itself - the game didn't take itself seriously. Some of the gameplay and objectives seemed a bit hap-hazard, as if you had to fill a strange checklist of random events to progress through the story. But, you were given the option to pay, literally pay, a visit to the fortune teller who would make strange noises including the word ‘PLASMA!’ very loudly before vaguely telling you where to go.

The story and dialogue were somewhat flawed but all the boss fights and their respective sound tracks were flawless.  The bosses themselves were fought in a first person view with different tactics and special moves, thoroughly entertaining indeed. Although I would have liked to be able to sing along to Impact’s theme song, much like the rest of the game, we were treated to subtitles so we can feel slightly involved in the technicolor madness that unfolded on screen. All in all, if you’re going to relive the old days and buy someone else’s N64 off of EBay, or if you have one sitting around and don’t own this game, I would recommend adding it to your collection! it’s definitely in my top 5 N64 games list and I still have the soundtrack on my MP3 player to this day.


Review by: Perry J. Hennessey | Reviewed on: Nintendo 64

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