Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z Gets Side-Scrolling Mode, Mighty No. 9 Costume

Team Ninja recently pulled back the curtain a bit further on upcoming slash-em-up, Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z, showing off a new side-scrolling mode for the game, as well as plans for DLC. If you weren't already sold on cutting the undead to ribbons with your katana, maybe this throwback to games of old will have you singing a different tune.

It's as if Team Ninja is trying to do everything in its power to set Yaiba apart from previous Ninja Gaiden games, and I mean that in the best way possible. Not that there's anything wrong with previous series entries, just that Yaiba looks like it will be offering up a much more lighthearted take on the action, replacing drama and picturesque graphics with a gritty comic book art style and and adventure that's clearly designed with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Whereas previous NG games were more about the challenge, Yaiba looks to be all about having a lot of fun while cruising around as a ninja.

I had a chance to get my hands on Yaiba at E3 and was absolutely picking up what this game is putting down. Controls were smooth, combos were fun to execute and there was violence galore. Along with a few sight gags and a bit of humorous dialogue, it became instantly clear that “this ain't your Daddy's Ninja Gaiden game” was likely the motto when creating Yaiba.

As the game draws closer to its early 2014 release, Team Ninja have now revealed a surprising Ninja Gaiden Z mode for the game, which smashes the action down to a 2D field reminiscent of old school Ninja Gaiden outings.

“The new Ninja Gaiden Z Mode expands the Yaiba experience, allowing Yaiba's over-the-top zombie-chucking antics to spill over into an all-new 3D side-scrolling realm,” reads the statement from Team Ninja. “Brought to life through classic 8-bit stylized cut screens and UI, this new mode will have Yaiba battling through hordes of elemental zombies, mechanized enemies, and other familiar baddies reminiscent of a certain 8-bit ninja's as he racks up more mad points with every brutal kill.”

For those who follow the series, you'll know that the titular Yaiba didn't fare so well in previous Ninja Gaiden games. His various bits and pieces have now been reconnected and brought back to life in Ninja Gaiden Z with the help of cybernetic enhancements, as well as the guidance of his new partner in crime, Miss Monday.

Now all sorts of creatures are coming back from the dead, and it's up to Yaiba to find out why, and then probably slice and dice those responsible.

Finally, as an added bonus, Team Ninja have announced that Yaiba will be getting some fancy new duds to try on while re-murdering all of those shambling masses. First up, a Beck costume from Keiji Inafune's Mighty Number 9 will be available courtesy of a collaboration with Comcept, meaning you'll be able to flip around the level and dispense steel-edged justice as Mega Man's successor. Also, a Camouflage costume will be made available for Yaiba sometime post-launch.

Staff Writer for CinemaBlend.