I played some Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master on my Playstation 2, through the Sega Mega Drive Collection. I have to keep firm on my opinion that Mega Drive sounds way cooler than Genesis (though Genesis deserves it’s praise never the less for being a great name too).
This game reeks Sega, everything from the graphics and color palette to the sound and music takes me back to the time when the Mega Drive was elusive to me. I only knew of two people owning it to be honest, compared to about ten or so owning an NES, and three or so owning a SNES. That was elusive enough to me as a kid, and add to that the fact that we seldom met those friends and there you have it.
Sega had this kind of exotic sound and feel to it, and I really loved the feel of the gamepad and the design of the system. Black and red never looked as nice together as on this console, and considering how black it was you can understand how two small buttons stuck out so much that I started to connect that color to the Mega Drive too.
Shinobi III is in itself a good 90’s platformer with good controls and great graphics. The music pumps you up and the challenge grows to be something to reckon with. While you might get a grasp of the controls pretty fast, and figure out how to play the game very early on, you’ll soon notice that the game throws several challenges along your way that will sometimes take several tries to get used to. I could get to Round 3 in one session though, never having played the game before. The graphics look really neat through my Playstation 2 RGB cable, and for some reason I forgot to turn the United CRT TV into 4:3 mode which is why you are seeing it in Widescreen mode. While it doesn’t have true Widescreen, this TV set allows for Widescreen viewing through adding black bars at the top and bottom of the screen. This, as in other modern TV sets, will change the controls as the horisontal and vertical planes will move differently. I like to blame my lack of skill on that fact whenever I do poorly, anyhow. Especially on these old school kick ass games that make sure to test your reflexes, patience and memory.
Make sure to play some Shinobi III to get your Sega fix. If you won’t, chances are the Shinobi will go all Ninja Gaiden on your ass.