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Arcade: Gang beat-em-up
ZX Spectrum 48K/128K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

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Alan Green
Chris Bourne

Life's a major downer for Armakuni lately. There he was in 12th century Japan, having a whale of a time as a ninja master, when an evil Shogun named Kunitoki threw the proverbial spanner in the works, wiping out most of Armakuni's chums...

As If this wasn't enough, a great pulsating light enveloped him to present day New York. Strewth! Wotta pain! Thing is, that rascal Kunitoki has made his way there, too. So the battle continues...

Finding himself in Central Park with nothing more than his raw ninja skills, Armakuni soon finds himself in a spot of bother. All the parities are out to get him, as are the local coppers!

He runs around the many screens dodging or confronting attackers while searching for scrolls, keys and weapons. If he can escape the park, it's press the play button time (yes, it's a multiloader, even on 128K) and on to five other levels.

There's the streets of downtown Manhattan, the sewers, an opium factory and an office (gasp, surely not such a dangerous and despicable place as this!) before the final confrontation in Kunitoki's retreat.

There's tons of arse to kick, all in 3D perspective, and the moves at your disposal are numerous. Consequently, control's tricky to master.

But don't panic if you can't stop performing backward somersaults and jumping off high ledges at first. In time, the way of the ninja comes to you, revealing a truly amazing game.

Even by today's standards, the graphics are quite something. Armakuni's acrobatic movements and weapons certainly bring out the kung-fu in you. The vast map of scenery is detailed and realistic, and there are nifty sounds and tune into the bargain.

Last Ninja 2's a scream once you've sussed out those overwhelming controls so git yen black belts on and kick some butt!

ALAN ... 81%