I-Ninja E3 2003 Preshow Report

Argonaut's new third-person action adventure game marries ninja action and extreme sports.

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In light of Namco's partnership with UK developer Argonaut, the Japanese software giant will be releasing I-Ninja on the PlayStation 2 in November and on the GameCube in December. The game is an action adventure that places you in the role of a hard-edged ninja embroiled in a fight against the diabolical Ranx army. Though few details have been revealed about the game, I-Ninja sounds like it will form an irreverent union between hard-core ninja action and extreme-sports gameplay.

Some of the I-Ninja's moves sound like they've been designed with both utility and comedy in mind. For instance, the "sword copter" will let you float and fly short distances--presumably, this involves spinning one or more swords overhead to act as helicopter rotor blades, giving you lift and allowing you to take off. Your ninja also has command of a variety of "manga-style ninja moves" with which to dispatch foes, and you can even "'shred' on extreme rails," although one wonders how this will be accomplished without a skateboard.

The I-Ninja will also have an assortment of ninja-oriented and conventional military weaponry available, including shuriken, chain whips, blowguns, and even rocket launchers. According to Namco, the game's many missions are spread across five environments, and you'll face enemies ranging from foot soldiers to a 150-foot robot. We'll be interested to see how I-Ninja shapes up, especially considering its apparently lighthearted treatment of its subject matter. Stay tuned to GameSpot for more information on I-Ninja as it becomes available.

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