Team Ninja Details Ninja Gaiden 3 Multiplayer, Ninja Gaiden Sigma+ For PS Vita


Earlier this week, Team Ninja set up a temporary dojo in San Francisco to share news and game time with Ninja Gaiden 3 and Dead or Alive 5 on the PlayStation 3. Of particular note was the first hands-on demo of Ninja Gaiden 3’s multiplayer offering in the form of 4v4 Team Deathmatch and Battle Royale modes. It’s a bold move to add a competitive multiplayer mode to a melee-based action game, and I struggled to think of a comparable product out there; it definitely stands on its own in the action genre. My favorite touch: when struck by a deathblow, you can fight off your attacker by mashing the buttons, and then choose to “die with honor” via seppuku.

After a lengthy playtest, we were granted some face-to-face time with the team’s Head Ninja, Yosuke Hayashi. Here we chat PlayStation Move support in NG3, working on the Vita, and how many actual ninja are on Team Ninja:


PlayStation.Blog: A focus at today’s event is multiplayer. The format for successful multiplayer shooters is well established, but there are strikingly few melee-based action games which incorporate 4v4 online multiplayer. What do you think is the core recipe for success?

Yosuke Hayashi, Head, Team Ninja: The Ninja Gaiden series is traditionally for a single player and there’s no multiplayer modes for action games. That is one of the reasons we decided to do so, because there isn’t any such thing in the market.

PSB: There were some cool co-op missions in Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 for PS3. Did that set the stage for this competitive multiplayer mode, and will we see something similar in Ninja Gaiden 3?

YH: NGS2 had a co-op mode, and we’ve always been thinking about adding a multiplayer mode into NG3. Of course, a co-op mode is less difficult to implement than a multiplayer mode. NG3 has a multiplayer competitive mode, as well as a co-op mode, so you can enjoy both.

[It was also revealed at the event that new NGS+ will feature new controls and challenge modes, as well as incorporating some styles and features from Ninja Gaiden 3.]


PSB: At Gamescom this year, you spoke to my colleague James Gallagher about how you were looking to integrate PlayStation Move into Ninja Gaiden 3. How is that coming along?

YH: Ninja Gaiden 3 has a so-called “Hero Mode”, where the system can assist you in protecting your character from attack. Making NG3, we’ve been focusing on the feeling of cutting somebody. By having the Move, that helps the player feel the action of killing someone.

PSB: Sounds like fun. [laughter]

YH: Yes.

PSB: We put out a call about talking to you, and there were a lot of questions about blood and violence in NG3. What’s your take on their importance? Are people too focused on those aspects over the gameplay?

YH: The reason why people focus on the blood on violence is maybe because the ninja has a very cruel aspect. Now we are focusing on the violence, but focusing less on the blood.

PSB: Have new games in this genre, like, say Bayonetta or God of War III, done anything that made you think, “oh, that’d be a great fit for Ryu?”

YH: Games in general have improved and changed a lot since Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2, but action games haven’t changed that much. So, we are thinking about making action games, and we are trying to make the genre more updated like other games. That’s why we’re focusing on the story and the online modes.

PSB: Ryu Hayabusa is clearly the focus here in NG3, but will there be other playable characters? In the spirit of the Sigma games, i’m sure many fans would like the option at some point for a different character and the change in gameplay it brings. Personally, I was a fan of Momiji and her halberd weapon in NGS2.

YH: Sigma is kind of a sister game to the Ninja Gaiden series, and after releasing NG3, we may consider releasing a Sigma game for it.


PSB: Will Ninja Gaiden 3 feature 3D support?

YH: We aren’t thinking about supporting 3D, no.

PSB: Please talk about your experience developing Ninja Gaiden Sigma+ for PS Vita.

YH: It’s been a long time since we lauched the first Ninja Gaiden Sigma on the PS3. The new title is called Ninja Gaiden Sigma+, which means we’ll be able to add new things onto the game.

PSB: Finally, how many actual ninjas do you have on Team Ninja?

YH: We have over 200 members on Team Ninja, enough people for the production of Ninja Gaiden 3, Dead or Alive 5, and Ninja Gaiden Sigma+ for Vita — at the same time.

PSB: I think that qualifies you all as ninjas, then.

YH: We have a lot of ninjas. [laughter]

Ninja Gaiden 3 will be out for PS3 in March. Ninja Gaiden Sigma+ will become available for PS Vita in the “launch window,” and before NG3.

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12 Comments 0 Author replies
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Cyberendpunk 9 December, 2011 @ 10:01 pm   1

“Sigma is kind of a sister game to the Ninja Gaiden series, and after releasing NG3, we may consider releasing a Sigma game for it.”

That pretty much convinced me to skip NG3 and wait for NGS3. And why didn’t you ask about DOA5!? I am so excited to finally play a DOA game considering the last time I touched the series was DOA2: Hardcore.

Well anyway I don’t mind the inclusion of MP in NG3 but I hope it runs well, NGS2(co-op) was really laggy at times so I am not optomistic about MP.

Wow… i can’t believe how many good games that are announced for the Vita before it’s even released. This handheld has made all other portable console launches seem like an amateur joke in comparison, including all other PSP launches.


This was such an awesome interview!! I’m totally excited NG3 and NG+ for the Vita :-). But just to confirm will NG3 have Move support on the PS3?


This was such an awesome interview!! I’m totally excited NG3 and NG+ for the Vita :-). But I just want to confirm will NG3 have Move support on the PS3?

Dante_Zero 10 December, 2011 @ 2:34 am   5

i played NGS3 at eurgamer and it was sick man. the controls were tight and the graphics and gameplay were smooth as. My only concern with NGS is that they carved the game a niche by making it probably one of the most difficult games out there to play, and i have to wonder if that hinders it’s sales abit as although people like a challenge i’m pretty sure they don’t want something that requires months of not stop playing to train yourself to take on the harder levels. Anyway can’t wait for NGS3 and the vita version and i know DOA is gonna be sick as.

When we will see first screens for NG Sigma+ for Vita? Will there be multiplayer?

maddogarchie64 10 December, 2011 @ 5:38 am   7

… Wait a min ninja gaiden 3 will have online? Sweet zombie Jesus!

chrisandsheva 10 December, 2011 @ 6:55 am   8

As a comment above stated ng is a well hard game to master, so if ng3 is going to be even harder then thats a little bit bad for me, don’t get me wrong though as it is going to be a day1 buy anyway, even though i only completed the 3rd difficulty in sigma2, i started the 4th and got to the boss fight in end of level2, (eventually), but had to concede, so i can only imagine how difficulty5 (path of ninja?) would play, but to those who platted/finished sigma2 top respect, Though i ‘guess’ that if i locked my other games away for a couple of months i ‘may’ of gotten there. Anyway am totally looking forward to ng3, funny enough i redownloaded the demo for ngs2 last week, even though i have all last months big games to play,Just felt like revisiting it. Is there any chance of altering the save system in ng3?, as in ngs2 i hated wasting the health refill when i didn’t need it, but knew i had to save, in fact talking about this game(s) i am going to fire the demo up right now (ngs2), try and beat/finish the harder challanges. btw, if theres any beta/demo (ps3) please keep me in mind, thanks for brilliant interview.


I’m really looking forward to NG3, that they have Masato Kato working on the story (he also worked on Final Fantasy VII, Xenogears, Chrono Trigger/Cross) is awesome, they’ve made some changes I’m not keen on but a focus on story and some tweaks to the gameplay (which I hope will be challenging without being cheap, which NG and NG2 could be at times) will hopefully make for a more entertaining game. I’m glad it’s being developed for both 360 and PS3 and we aren’t getting an ‘enhanced’ port some time later, the multiplayer though… it looks like it could either be a lot of fun or a complete mess, it looks like one on one battles would be hella fun though.

sephiroth399 11 December, 2011 @ 5:51 am   10

dont think people want to play ninja gaiden sigma on the vita, it wasnt a good game, they should just put ninja gaiden 3 on the vita when thats released.


This article has increased my interest. NGS2 was really good, its just a shame this is out in march like ME3 which will take all my time lol. Will still pick this up.

TehPhilosopher 12 December, 2011 @ 11:52 am   12

No 3D. Great news, I’d rather them concentrate on making great gameplay than supporting a gimmick.