Kid Niki: Radical Ninja

Publisher: Data East
Year: 1987
Genre: Side-ScrollIn Kid Niki: Radical Ninja, you play the role of the titular kid ninja. Your bird was shot by an arrow and, in proper ninja form, you set out for revenge. The game consists of running along attacking ninjas and other enemies until you get to a boss.

Kid Niki: Lackluster Title Screen
Kid Niki: Lackluster Title Screen
The most interesting screencap I could get.
The most interesting screencap I could get.

There’s nothing wrong with this formula in general, but this execution is bland. I was a little torn as to whether to call this a “platform” game at all, given that there are no platforms to jump on top of. There are times you jump over pits and the like, sure, but you are always on the ground, with no over or under platforms.

Enemy attack patterns are predictable, but your radical ninja moves are sluggish, making evading most attacks impractical at best. Because of the lack of platforming or powerups in the game, the action is very linear and not particularly interesting. Compound this with the fact that hit detection is sporadic (at best) and you have a recipe for a completely forgettable game that probably isn’t worth your time.

John’s Rating: 2.0 out of 5.0. Kid Niki is dull. It’s not even really good enough to make fun of. The bosses are clearly designed to be silly or zany, but I’m not feelin’ it.

Also has some tasteful religious imagery.
Also features tasteful religious imagery.

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