Ninja Gaiden 3 Won't Feature Dismemberment

If you wanted to fast track your way to an RC rating in Australia, usually gratuitous amounts of video game dismemberment was the most efficient way to go. Now that we're on the cusp of receiving an R18+ rating in Australia, Team Ninja has claimed that the latest entry into the Ninja Gaiden series - previously a repeat offender when it comes to unnecessary gore - will no longer feature any dismemberment of any kind.

The reason? People are bored of violence.

"We don't think people want to see that anymore," claimed a spokesperson for Team Ninja. "They've already seen it."

We tend to agree. Having played versions of Ninja Gaiden minus the head slicing, I have to say I never really missed it, particularly since it wasn't really a key element of the mechanics, in the same was as, say, the upcoming Metal Gear Rising.

That said, just when we could have had it, they cruelly snatch it from our hands...

No dismemberment in Ninja Gaiden 3 [Eurogamer]


    So their argument is that people are growing bored of something that is the staple of the franchise, by that same logic maybe the next portal game would sell more copies if you didn't have the portal gun.

      If you can still fire portals without the portal gun then yes, it's the same.

      If you're saying that Ninja Gaiden sans dismemberment is the same as Portal minus the main game mechanic then you're wrong.

      I thought climbing up walls was the Ninja Gaiden signiture - having said that (of the current gen) I've only played a few minutes of the Ninja Gaiden II demo - I found it pedestrian.

      I am kinda sick of gratuitous violence in games, I note that in GTA IV there was no beheading (something which you can do in San Andreas either by shot gun or sword) I took this as a sign that the creators saw how realistic the people looked in the game that it might be a bridge too far in terms of graphic content.

      Funnily Valve was contemplating the idea of having a prequel with no portal gun or glaDOS before they went ahead with the sequel.

      if you honestly think the main selling point of ninja gaiden was the gore, you missed the point.
      Challenge, ridiculous combat, challenge, ninjas and challenge ring a bell?
      If you compare sigma 2 to Gaiden 2,
      Sigma 2 was a million times better.
      You could actually see what was dead and what was alive amongst the countless limbs plastered all over the floor, Just made me think the gore in gaiden 2 was a horrible design choice.

    Why does he have a cabbage on his head?

    Maybe the next game could have enemies that just lie down when attacked and play dead, occasionally breaking character to say "I'm alright really, this is just pretend"

    Well there's another title I don't have to worry about purchasing.

    I disagree profusely. I think OVER THE TOP dismemberment is what we are tired of. I think dismemberment achieved through difficult combos, a beheading 'achieved' as a 'fatality' of sorts, is warranted to be in the game. Its when every bloody slice of the sword sends a limb flying that it's boring. Give us beheadings by all means, but tone down the multi-limb flayings and choppings.

      When they start spewing out quotes like "We don’t think people want to see that anymore” & “They’ve already seen it.” it can be annoying.

      The same thing can be said for the game itself, so what are they doing to do to encourage those people to pick up the newest installment.

      Removing such a small insignificant fragment of the game isn't going to do that, especially if the game ends up playing the same.

      The problem I see is that if they tone it down, then they aren't going to have anything that makes their title actually stand out, it will be just another hack'n'slash.

        Indeed. It reeks of 'Lets give them excuses as to why we're trying to appeal to a wider audience by toning it down...'

      I did enjoy the over-the-top limbs flying everywhere, but I would agree with that. Just seems stupid that you have this 'ultra ninja' with his bad ass weapons, and he can't even cut off an arm

    Aw..slicing and dicing pixel heads is my favouritest thing in the whole wide werld!

    I kind of liked it in Ninja Gaiden 2, I got bored with NG2 because it was too damn hard and I didn't find that entertaining.

    The only thing stopping me from buying NG3 is that I will probably suck at it.

      Agreed. I'll be playing Rising instead.

    ahhhh Kotaku getting more yes men day by day....

    questioning, debate and criticism drives improvement and progress, just saying 'yeah, cool' to everything is why companies like EA, activision, ubisoft and Square to name a few have seen drastic drops in the quality of their products

      You make me happy when I read your self-entitled comments.

        Thanks Dan i can sign you up to my fan club :D. Population you and Hercules P Rockafella!

        What exactly is it in Richard Smacks post that makes you think he is claiming to be entitled to anything?

          Thats what i would like to know Mr Hercules P Rockafella. Maybe his one of those guys that just agrees with everything kotaku says aka yes men aka kotaku hmmmm. Its all coming back to me nowwwwwww There were moments like these when there was flashes of lights!

      Your sir present some revolutionary and thought-provoking sentiments. I should much like to subscribe to your newsletter.

      That's bullcrap, just because I agree with this one particular sentiment? That makes me a yes man? Could it be that on this one particular occasion I agree with something someone said? Is that not a little more reasonable?

        As Homer Simpson once said NO DICE!

          You're such a NO DICE man. Stop being such a NO DICE man about every single issue!

            NO DICE!

              Hello Richard Smack, we meet again. That was quite an escape you made in Paris but you shan't pry yourself free of my grasp this time!

                Excuse me Mark while i go take out the trash! Come here Archnemesis!!!

                  I somehow forgot I was pissed off about this.

                  I now wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

                  Bah! Why can't I decapitate you?! This is impossible... *shakes fist in anger* You win this time Richard Smack but you can't escape my wrath forever! THIS ISN'T OVER!

              I lolled

    This is disappointing :(

    Richard Smack talking sense? Never!

      Its just how i roll cutie

    Hmm while i agree in SOME ways, isn't being a ninja all about explosive blood and dismemberment? I mean, look at all the old japanese samurai and ninja movies. Hell even the new ones!

    Also, does this train of thought extend to games like left 4 dead 2? Plenty of people here never even played it because they took a backwards step from number 1 when it came to dismissing hordes of zombies.

    While i agree that violence for the sake of violence isn't needed, we are still talking about a guy wielding a katana with skill here. If you get hit in the neck with one, guess what? Your head will most likely come off!

    Also, to further extend my argument - Ninja gaiden games are hard. Ninja gaiden games are FETHING HARD!
    If i die 20 times at the hand of one guy, you're damn right that when i kill him i want to see him hop around black-knight style. I want to make him my Hellen Keller!

      I suppose there are two distinct schools of 'cinematic ninja'; the anime-styled bloodsplosion-ness (where combat is a glorified focus) and the more realistic stealth assassination (often with a larger political narrative rather than the common tales of bloody personal vengeance). What works for one may or may not work for the other depending on what other factors are brought to bear.

      eg. games like Halo mostly lack dismemberment, but compensate for this with precisely tweaked ragdolls that allow for equally gratuitous and often extremely comical demise of both friend and foe alike. Ragdolls may or may not cut it otherwise dependent on context. In this case, if antagonists are adequately armoured, then suspension of disbelief may not be disrupted by fatal 'stun' wounds.

      Regarding games like L4D2 however, the zombie/horror genre is gory by nature as well as design. Removing gore from a zombie scenario is like removing energy weapons from high-technology science fiction (eg. retrofuturistic or demi-mythological). Likewise with something like God of War or Prince of Persia: Warrior Within; the violence is narrative as much as it is presentational, addressing both the methods and motivations of key players.

      I think Dead Rising 2 displays this nicely. When you first Highlander-slice a zombie clean down the middle, you feel like a baddass monster hunter. Alternately, if all you have is a sledgehammer or other blunt instrument and you are being swarmed, the desperation of the protagonist and player converge as you pummel a mounting pile of bodies relentlessly into smaller and smaller pieces to ensure they don't get up again (Dead Space does this as well). Ultimately a well realised gore system can become an integral means of environmental feedback for the player, like dynamic light and shadow. Anyone who has played Severance: Blade of Darkness no doubt knows exactly what I mean by that last line.

        But in the end, Ninja Gaiden IS a movie-style theatrics ninja - hence the bloodsplosions

        If it were a skillful stealth based game, then hell no there shouldn't be mountains of blood - but you also wouldn't be hacking away at something for the better half of ten minutes trying to kill it :)

          I know it's definitely in the former camp, but my main point was more about how it could work gore-free IF, and only if, context supported it. I'm not familiar with the story running through the current NG games, but is there a chance of enemy design leading to the heavily armoured? (or at least justifying everything being a sword-proof robot :p)

      Good point actually. It just seems crazy to have a ninja... with a katana... but no bloody. Just doesn't seem right

      I mean the blood and guts was perfect with the difficulty. After trying to get through one of those boss fights, all you want to do afterwards is rip their bloody guts out! :P

    First Priority: Gameplay / Mechanics
    Status: Quick reaction combat and ninja moves, Unchanged/Improved
    Second Priority: Context
    Status: Still a ninja
    Third Priority: Aesthetics
    Still pretty; No dismemberment.

    So, yeah. Not a big deal. Also, I agree, violence is gross-outs are overused by the industry. They are a crutch.

    Everyone has seen ninjas, why have ninjas in a game? I think its a poor standpoint for Team Ninja - maybe someone from their department would dare say they're taking out the bounce in Dead or Alive because everyone has seen boobies before.

    Ninja Gaiden II was more bloody than the first, yet that made it through the classification board unscathed (explain that one, guys)

    I would say, the real reason they're dropping the violence is because its getting so much media attention these days and they want their game to be remembered for other aspects.

    Honestly you people ffs do some research.

    Ninja Gaiden sigma 2 on xbox featured tons of blood + dismemberment got through ratings board fine - so that is hardly a valid reason for them to do this.

    Ninja gaiden sigma 2 on ps3 (ps3 port of the xbox version)had the blood taken out and the dismemberment toned down (limbs instan vanish) because the producer wanted it to be like that (he is even quoted as such saying so, he is the same guy doing NG3). That said though there were significant technical sacrifices made to have it run smooth on the platform (less on screen enemies, lower poly modeling amongst things) - that sounds like a more valid reason to remove unneeded effects for framerate when developing for all 3 platforms (xbox, ps3, wii u).

    Was one of the main reasons I loved the dam game! Will be passing on the next one soley because of that reason :(

    I should say that I love gore in games, the more blood and guts, the better IMO. I don't want to see sparks or dust when you slice through another ninja with your katana. I do notice stuff like that, and while it doesn't turn me off a game, its a constant nag in the back of my mind while i play

    NG2 got through perfectly, and that was Gore Central!! Unedited, and wasn't refused at all

    *this just in* producer also tired of hyper boobed anime style female characters in skin tight suits. Not really? Didn't think so ;p

    MSG Rising - its all about Rising now when it comes to the Katana. Its not what you slice its how you slice. Creativity is the answer to boredom. cutting off heads is old news.
    Gimme a watermelon anyday.

    A games biggest priority should be pleasing the fans than have supported it thus far. This doesn't seem fair to all the Ninja-G fans out there.

    Because when in real life, when you slice someone with a katana they dont loose limbs, thats just crazy.

    How can you have a ninja game (which=samurai swords) when nothing is sliced through?

    This game just imploded.

    I agree that the violence was never anything special, but I have to wonder just what is going through their heads to outright remove it. They could just, y'know, put it in but not put much weight behind it in terms of promotion. It looks silly to slice someone in half and... Nothing happens. Even though the dismemberment wasn't a selling point, it was cool to see people actually fall in half. As others have said, it suited the more ninja style compared to say God of War and Devil May Cry.

    Ultimately it just makes me worry about the direction. Even if this isn't a major thing, if they're going to make the presentation more accessible I can't help but think they'll try the same for the gameplay.

    Great. So then give Ryu a baseball bat.

    I'm sick of games featuring bladed weapons that require you to beat someone to death with it.

    A katana is not a club.
    A lightsaber is not a bludgeon.

    Well way to go ruin one of my favourite series.

    And i can say for a fact that the main reason i liked these games was for the dismemberments and all of my friends agree with me on that. Granted i still like a challenging game but taking away its signature mark won’t help i can say if it’s just going be a pussy version of the last two i won’t buy it the second didn’t have as good gameplay as the first or as much content.
    So a non-gory not as good gameplay version of the second one congrats Team Ninja congrats indeed.
    People harden the F# @K UP! And stop being little girls if you don’t like violence make them have a no gore option like most other games that feature this kind of content.

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