I’m sure that the creators of Cyber Shadow don’t want their game to be compared to any other based on what the title of this article suggests, but in this case it’s not at all a bad thing. It’s totally a compliment. The Ninja Gaiden series of games, specifically the ones on the NES are one of the great series of games of all time. Cyber Shadow is a game that takes the best of what Ninja Gaiden was and improves on it in such a way that the GstyleGaming crew looked at this game as an homage to a classic. This is a fantastic game and even though it’s still very early in 2021 this game is already one of my favorites of the year.
WHAT’S CYBER SHADOW ABOUT? HOW’S THE GAMEPLAY?
Cyber Shadow’s gameplay is exactly what you expect from an 8-bit side scrolling Ninja Gaiden style game. Fast paced linear action, hacking, slashing and jumping. You’ll play the game as heroine “Shadow” and basically the game takes place in an apocalyptic/dystopian era in the city of Mekapolis where it appears that a power hungry scientist Dr. Progen has gone bad and turned what was once a thriving society to shit. Shadow is now on a quest to find her master and “save the world”. Typical 8-bit story.
Ninja Gaiden references are apropos here but there are a lot of differences to this game that separate the two games entirely. For starters, Shadow has a strike forward only sword and she cannot crouch and strike which is so detrimental and adds difficulty to an already difficult game, can’t figure that decision out.
Power Ups and progression are really nice in this game and at the time of this review I have not completed the game in it’s entirety but out of the 7 available powerups I have 6. These powerups are so important to your progress going forward, especially when you finally get the wall climb. Not only are power-ups huge for Shadow as you can go back through the stages that you already completed via the kiosks and find areas you couldn’t otherwise get to earlier in the game. You can do this to find more powerups to extend your health and spirit bar. Whereas in Ninja Gaiden, you couldn’t build on Ryu even as the game progressed. Replay of stages is also a major plus for this game.
Stage design is on point here. They’re full of color and accurate to the premise of the game. Obstacles are a plenty and enemies are strategically placed. Well timed jumps and strikes require practice and the enemies are unforgiving, They’ll keep coming and they always seem to fire a projectile and knock you back always at the right time. You WILL die a lot. Cyber Shadow is a game that will make you want to break your controller, but don’t do it.
Boss fights are annoying but oddly rewarding. Again, the boss fights are an ode to the past. Each boss has a unique pattern and a way for you to do damage to them. Nothing too crazy. You’ll die a couple of times for sure but once you figure it out you’ll feel like a boss. Just so you know ahead of time, if you play this game. There is NO boss more annoying than the water Mekadragon. That boss caused me to rage quit once and it took me forever to defeat him.
The goal of each stage is really to get to the checkpoints as best you can because they so scarce and spaced out so far in between each other. I didn’t care for this. Considering the difficulty of the game it would have better to have checkpoints in more frequency. Dying in this game is really costly in that you may have to start from a point that was a pain in the ass to get past in the first place. Hopefully an update will change at the very least the checkpoints if not anything else.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON CYBER SHADOW
Cyber Shadow is an incredibly well thought out and well put together game. It’s an homage to one of the greatest series of games in all of gaming. I hope that the folks over at Yacht Club Games that developed Cyber Shadow don’t take my comparison as an insult. It’s the highest form of praise that I’m giving this game. This game is such a good time and has a ton of replay value in that you can try to speedrun it and challenge yourself in a variety of ways after you beat the game traditionally.
Cyber Shadow is a game you get when the developers really want to pay attention to details from the past and cater to not just old guys like me but the younger gamer that wants to play games of that era to understand what gaming was like back in its infancy. I highly recommend you play this game. We gave it an 8 out of 10. It’s available on all platforms. Get it on all of em. It’s on Steam for PC, Switch, Xbox One and PS4. Next gen consoles as of this moment don’t have access to it right now but there are enough ways to play this game.