Posted in: Game Reviews by Archive Authors on October 22nd, 2003
Tenchu 3: Wrath of Heaven continues the adventures of Rikimaru, and his ongoing battle with the evil sorcerer Tenrai, taking place one year after the original Tenchu. This time there is 3 playable characters, Rikimaru along with Ayame, and Tesshu (doctor by day, assassin by night). Fans of the first 2 original Tenchu games have nothing to worry about as developer K2 has improved upon every aspect of the game.
Tenchu: Wrath of heaven is a solid looking game. While the grap…ics aren’t jaw dropping, it does every thing right in setting the mood. The character models are very good, and the animations are smooth. The many cut scenes are very well done especially the stealth kills. The backgrounds are also very well done, including areas from forests, caverns, ocean cliffs, villages, and more.
The sounds in the game are excellent, especially in setting the stealth type atmosphere. With traditional Japanese music playing in the back combined with all the sounds like fire crackling, the ocean, gusts of wind, it really sets the tone for your missions. Other sound effects such as swords hitting in battle, dogs barking, footsteps, are all very well done also.. The voice acting which appears in Tenchu isn’t the best, but it works for this game.
Anybody who has played the first two Tenchu games will have no problem jumping into this game. There are plenty of new moves, and unlockable moves. The unlockable moves are gained by killing in stealth. The more stealth kills you have the more unlockable moves you will get. These moves are everything from turning invisible to powerful sword maneuvers. Most of the missions in the game are linear in that you have to get a certain item, or kill a certain character, but how you go about doing the task is up to the player. You can go almost anywhere in this game, and it’s up to the player if the mission should be completed stealth style or not. Each time a mission is complete a little bit of the story is revealed. The combat system is the best this series has ever used. You can do everything from block, kick, using your sword, very easily and against multiple opponents at one time. The enemy AI is also very good as they can hear your footsteps, and will search the areas for you. As you progress through the game the enemies will become much harder, including enemies who can kill with one hit.
Wrath of Heaven has a very high replay value. Once you finish the game with one character you can still use another character and after that a third character is unlocked. The first time this game will take you about 10 hours to complete then after that about 8 hours with each additional character. Each time you finish with a certain character more of the story from their perspective, so once you finish the game with all three characters you will get the whole story and there are some nice turns and twists. There are about 30 unlockable items, which you will acquire throughout the game. Once you have finished this game with all the characters, there is even a multi-player mode which can be quite fun. There are 16 unlockable character which can be used in multiplayer.
Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven is one of the best stealth games available. With great visuals, excellent music, excellent gameplay, and hours of gameplay, it is the best Ninja game available and is definitely worth a purchase.