Ninjas are awesome. So are easy to learn yet hard to master puzzle games. Combining the two, therefore, ought to be awesome squared.
You'd be right, as it turns out.
Ninja Throw is a physics-based puzzler that challenges players to fling Ninja Stars (Shuriken, I think they're called) at gongs in as short a time and as few throws as possible. Holding the screen allows you to plot your trajectory and loose your projectile without having to worry about power or gravity; it moves in a straight line unless there are obstacles in the way.
The vectors of previous failed throws remain on the screen as ghostly silhouettes, which means that you'll never fluff the same shot twice. It's a nice touch that, frankly, I'd have liked to have seen in Angry Birds.
Here we go again: it's a simplistic premise, but it's soon taken to logical extremes by moving hazards, stormclouds that can push your shuriken in new directions and brooding Senseis who drag your shots off course. Ninja Throw also soon introduces the ability to place design elements yourself, making for a much more thoughtful experience than it first appears. Split-second timing and forward planning are key to success, and a satisfyingly unique proposition.
Graphically, Ninja Throw is as charming and goofy as you'd expect from a Chillingo puzzler (a native iPhone version and universal scalable HD build are both available depending on your iThingy of choice), but admittedly suffers from the horrendously aggravating and repetitious sound design that tends to plague the genre. Why each menu button press has to be accompanied by a digitised yelp, I'll never know.
There's plenty of content on offer, but puzzle veterans should be aware that blowing through the monolithic pile of levels won't take them too long. The level of challenge is fairly low compared to some of the more ferocious brainteasers on the market, so I'd recommend it to more casual players who want something to distract them from Daily Mail headlines on the morning commute.
- Easy to learn, hard to master
- Unique and exciting
- Lots of polished content
- Weak sound design
- Not challenging enough for experienced players
Summary: Ninja Throw is another accessible and addictive puzzler that more than deserves a place in your downloadable library. Another tour de force from Chillingo's stable of developers.
- SD Version: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Requires iOS 3.0 or later
- Universal HD Version: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Requires iOS 3.0 or later.