Tenchu 2 Birth Of The Stealth Assassins
Developed by Acquire and published by Activision outside of japan Tenchu 2 is the second in the feudal ninja series known as Tenchu. Released in 2000 for the PS1 Tenchu 2 is a prequel and takes place several years before the events of the first game (Tenchu Stealth Assassins).
Tenchu 2 sees the return of Rikimaru and Ayame from the first game as well as adding to the cast of minor supporting characters. Much like the first game the premise of the story is simple enough(if you read the review for the first game you can skip this paragraph), you as a ninja does what you're boss tells you which generally involves you making you're way through a stage avoiding guards until you get to the end of the level and fight a boss. As far as the story goes that is where the similarities end with the first game in the series.
To start with the story takes more prevalence in this game then in the first, it seems to be the driving force rather than just a short detour to set up the missions. Another big change is that the story tries harder to convey the characters attitudes and what made them the way they are. The story has definitely been given more thought and focus then the first game however in it's place comes new problems, the main one being that the overall style of the characters has changed. While it's understandable that the characters are different when compared to the original game the general tone is that of much less dark and serious set characters.
The presentation has also suffered due to the new style, while the overall graphical standard has improved becoming more clear and crisp and the character models are less blocky the characters have lost a certain degree personality. The levels are large enough and are quite varied. The gore which comes with "stealth kills" remains leading to another 18 age rating from the BBFC however this can also have problems as at time the animation is totally skipped due to poor programming.
The gameplay in Tenchu 2 is very similar to the first game with the "ki meter" returning. Used to indicate the mental state of the nearest guard such as of you have been detected the "ki meter" is very useful and is essential to success in the game. Face to face combat is a chore and should be avoided whenever possible, instead the best course of action is to get close to your targets and press the attack button to initiate a "stealth kill" animation (incidentally there are more in this game including a jumping one) which will eliminate you're enemies quickly. There are several new actions for the game, swimming which at first seems a great addition until you realise that entering the water alerts any guards in the immediate area (... not thought through...) as well as the ability to sheathe and unsheathe you're sword allowing you to drag bodies out of sight to avoid detection and also the ability to search the bodies of dead guards to find new items. The grappling hook has been severely neutered in this game (awww...) now only allowing you to hook onto ledges rather than anything that is at the right height and distance like in the original. An important new feature is the mission editor which lets you create you're own missions and maps which you can save on a memory card and share with a friend. There's in incentive to keep playing after completing the game in the form of improving high scores and also expanding the story by playing as an other character.
Audio is the biggest disappointment to Tenchu 2, what was a fitting and original soundtrack in the first game has been replaced by nothing. The game retains it's sound effects but for whatever reason the developers thought that the game would be better suited to having no stage music. The voice acting has no improvements over Tenchu 1 and in some instances may actually be worse.
Tenchu 2 is a something of a paradox, if you liked the first game you you're sure to find it enjoyable however your experience of the first game is also likely to leave you feeling disappointed that Tenchu 2 fails to really improve in any way over the original save replay value thanks to the mission editor. It's still worth a buy as it's very cheap on the net and is an enjoyable experience, it just fails to deliver on it's potential.
At A Glance.
Gameplay ~ 7/10
Story ~ 6/10
Graphics ~ 5/10
Sound ~ 4/10
Replay Value ~ 10/10
Yes! Tenchu 2. The first game I've bought andwithout a doubt my favourite one.
It's graphics are not really that great but it's a Playstation game, you can't ask for much.
What is really, really good in this game is the storyline. The characters have personality. There are a lot of feelings in the storyline.
Aside from that. In the game you have ninja items you can use to hide, kill, poison, throw, heal, etc.. etc.. If you complete a level with the title of Grand Master you unlock a new item. That title is achieve by clearing the levels using stealth. If you're seen by the enemies, you won't be able to reach that level.
The characters do not have any superhuman powers like in Tenchu 3.
To kill the enemies stealthy, we use the stealth kills. There are a couple of them, it depends how you approach your enemies. Some of them are really brutal.
Speaking of which, this game has a LOT of blood. For instance, in a battle, just one blow in your enemy will cause a rain of blood. Not recommended for young children :)
The controls are somewhat hard to master, it takes some practice.
There is not much music. But the one there is is great.
Upon its initial release, Activisions unique and more realistic ninja videogame Tenchu: Stealth Assassins proved quite a hit with gamers the World over, though never becoming a huge seller. As anyone who has read my review of that game will tell you, I wasnt its biggest fan. I thought the game had a wonderful premise, and with a bit of work, could have been an all-out classic. Not too long afterwards, Activision returned to the Tenchu franchise with a prequel to the first game, entitled Tenchu 2: Birth of the Stealth Assassins.
As the title indicates, the game follows Ayame and Rikimaru, the protagonists of the first game, as well as new boy Tatsumaru, as they finalise their training with the Azuma Ninja clan to learn to serve their Master Lord Gohda as he struggles to maintain peace in his land during Feudal Japan.
Working on what seems to be the same engine as the first game, Birth of the Stealth Assassins doesnt add a great deal to the way the game actually plays, in fact its almost identical, where it differs from the first title is in the options it offers the player. For a start, playing the game with Rikimaru and Ayame is now a far more different experience. Even when the 2 share levels, their missions and layouts differ, and completing the game with both of them unlocks Tatsumaru, and upon completion of his missions, which differ entirely to the other two ninjas, gives the player the games true ending.
Now, ordinarily, Id be very critical of this whole You need to play it 3 times to actually complete it (Yes, Im talking to you Eternal Darkness) but in this case I actually give the game some means of applause for it, on the grounds that at least the 3 flythrough will be significant enough in terms of differences that it wont feel too monotonous.
As with the first game, the games Gameplay is both its biggest pro and its biggest con. On the plus side, getting through a level undetected by enemy eyes, stealth-killing any foes who do cross your path, causes an almost shockingly guilty level of satisfaction. You accomplish this by sneaking up on enemies when their back is turned and they are unaware of your presence, which you can tell via a small insignia next to your health bar, which, via the correct symbols, informs you if your enemy is oblivious to anything going on, can see something but are unsure what, know there is someone there, or can actually see you. This insignia can also be used to tell how close an enemy is to you.
Your ninja also has a number of neat little toys to help you accomplish your missions, from grappling hooks, shurikens and primitive grenades to armour, landmines and blow guns, all the tricks a ninja could want are at your disposal.
All the tricks, however, apart from the most basic and obvious one: Movement, which is where the game falls down. Its hard to see the Azuma Ninja achieving anything, considering they move with all the grace of a drunk rhinoceros. Seriously, controlling your trained assassin is almost laughably bad, possibly even worse than in the first game. Precision control in this game does not exist, your ninja basically hobbles about and if your lucky your enemy wont see you swagger up to them, and if youre even luckier the hapless way they swing their blade at them will connect.
You see, all new to Tenchu 2 is some of the most shocking hit detection Ive ever seen in a videogame. Its really quite disheartening to sneak up to an enemy guards back, only for your perfectly timed slice to go through them without registering, and the sight of your arm, magically protruding through their chest, alerting them to your presence to boot. The hilariously clunky way the ninjas turn around also crushes any semblance of realism the game tries to portray (they make the cast of Resident Evil look agile, put it like that)
Also holding over from the first game is the annoying combat system. Honestly, even Im better with a sword than these supposed warrior elites, meaning if you dont land that killer 1-Hit stealth kill, your in for a long, and highly irritating, battle. At least Activision assigned block to the Circle button this time, for all the good it does. This means boss fights are still long, and incredibly tedious, most notables Ayames duel with a White Tiger. Where blows to its body dont register.
Speaking of controls and buttons, aside from the clunky way the characters move, the game actually controls pretty well, with the system being pretty intuitive, as well having no response issues.
Graphically, I feel a bit harsh tearing into a game from 2 gaming generations ago, but Tenchu 2 really doesnt look very good. The stages suffer from some chronic fade-in problems, far too angular terrain, appearing/disappearing walls and objects and even the enemy characters look and move in a really quite primitive fashion. The 3 controllable ninja look a bit better, granted thats only really if you manage to pick them up some Ninja Armour to obscure their faces. For a game made in the year 2000, it really does look quite amateurish. The FMV videos look fairly good however, they are rare, but they are really about as good visually as can be expected from the PlayStation.
The sound is equally disappointing. While Rikimaru, Tatsumaru and most of the cast have suitable voices, the stilted and often uninterested delivery of the lines makes for some quite, unintentional, laughable scenes, and Ayame, who for some reason now comes across as a lippy, American, teenage girl, is just plain embarrassing and irritating. The music is sparse, though this actually works quite well at building up and atmosphere, it really doesnt do as good a job as the distinctive oriental themes playing.
What does earn the game a lot of praise in my eyes is the Mission Editor mode. It would take an eternity to go in-depth explaining it here, but in short, the game allows you to create your own stages from the ground up, terrain, traps, enemies its a time-consuming process, but it is really nifty nonetheless. Shame the gameplay wasnt more tight, or this would probably be enough to make it an all-time great in my eyes.
As it is, I dont regret having played Tenchu 2: Birth of the Stealth Assasins, though Id only really recommend doing so now to those who are into the series in a big way and want to experience its early days. Other than those, I doubt there are that many people who would be interested in a now somewhat obscure release for a long dead console, put out 7 years ago, but I will say that Tenchu 2 is far, far, far from the worst 3D adventure game for the PlayStation. I just wouldnt go gung ho spending a lot of money to track it down.
This is the sequel to Tenchu Stealth Assassins, which was the first game I ever really became obsessive about on the Playstation. Or rather, it's the prequel, for reasons that should be pretty easy to guess if you've played Tenchu 1 to the end. As in the earlier version, you choose to be one of two young ninjas, Rikimaru (male, one sword, strong, earnest) or Ayame (female, two swords, fast, flighty). You go on a variety of missions, having to complete one mission before you can move on to the next. Typically these involve sneaking around some forest, or building or whatever, killing enemy ninjas until you come up against an end of level baddy. The idea of the game is that you have to be stealthy - you hide around corners, behind trees or whatever, until your enemy is looking in the other direction, then rush out and cut his throat. If he spots you, he'll fight you (or she - there are quite a lot of lady ninjas). At the end of each mission you'll be rated according to how stealthy you were (determined by how many times you are seen, and how many people you kill. Generally best to kill everyone). If you do especially well you are rated "grandmaster", and will unlock a special weapon of some kind. The general gameplay is the same as Tenchu 1. The controls are the same (although they might take a while to pick up if you haven't played the first one) and the missions are generally pretty similar. There are a few new features - you can hide the corpses of your victims, and search their bodies for weapons. You can also swim underwater now. The quality of the graphics and animation is quite similar to the first game - the colours are a bit brighter, but that's about all. The gore has been toned down slightly, which is somewhat disappointing. In the first one you could cheerfully hack the limbs from your adversaries' bodies in combat, and decapitate them. There doesn't seem to be any such excess here. Also
, my favourite of Ayame's moves, where she grabbed an enemy's head between her thighs and snapped his neck, doesn't happen nearly as much in this version. There's still plenty of blood spraying everywhere, though, so I suppose it should satisfy most people's cravings for mindless violence. Another bad thing is the cut scenes. There are dozens of them. Tenchu 1 had a vague storyline running through it, but it never really intruded into the game too much. Here the storyline is very important, and to be honest it isn't very good. The story is as follows: Ayame and Rikimaru are young Azuma ninjas, trained by some old Ben Kenobi type in their village, friends with another young ninja called Tatsumaru. They all work for kindly Lord Gohda, who is at war with some other local lord. After a while Tatsumaru vanishes, and a savage new enemy appears, a huge gang of rogue, masterless ninjas called the Burning Dawn. Tatsumaru appears to be working for them, but when his friends Ayame and Rikimaru confront him he claims not to know who they are. Eventually the Burning Dawn's fiendishly elaborate plan is revealed - they've built an enormous war ship with which they plan to take over the world. And so, in order to illustrate this pointlessly elaborate storyline (and there are a few sub-plots along the way too) there are loads and loads of animated sequences. This is a trend in computer games that I resent - I want to play a game, not watch it. You can skip through them, but you still have to wait for them to load, which takes quite a while on a Playstation. It doesn't help that the scripting is appalling - it all takes itself laughably seriously. Sequences at the end of the game, with two of the evil characters declaring their love for each other as they die in flames are likely to make you either roar with laughter or reach for something to be sick into. And the voices are even worse. It seems that the more heroic a cha
racter is, the more American his accent. Ayame has probably the most annoying voice in the history of computer games, she sounds just like the blonde one in Captain Caveman. (And another thing - I take issue with the fact that Ayame's breasts are larger in this game than in the earlier one. It's meant to be a prequel, and she's only about 20 in Tenchu 1 - this is set at least three years before that. I know that's an incredibly tawdry thing to be worried about, but it bothers me. Also, when she swims you can see right up her skirt. You can't help but notice.) In spite of the annoying story element, it is still a hugely enjoyable game. There are all kinds of new surprises that weren't present in the first version. There are landmines on some levels; some of the evil ninjas have masks that are shaped just like the heads of birds; the demons on one level all have Clockwork Orange style long noses. There are few things as satisfying as finally leaping out of your hiding place to gut some unsuspecting bird-headed ninja. One of my complaints about the earlier game was that the stealth factor wasn't that important. You needed to be stealthy to get a good score, but if you chose to engage an enemy in face to face combat it wasn't difficult to win at all. In this version the enemies have become noticeably harder to kill. In the first version, it was possible to take along loads of hand grenades and use those to kill the end of level villains. This time that doesn't work, as they have enough intelligence to dodge things you throw at them. In fact they also have weapons that they can throw at you, and some of them are pretty fiendish. The blow-pipe is a particularly nasty weapon, as it doesn't just hurt you once, it hurts you over and over again as the poison on the dart courses through your veins. And the special weapons are nowhere near as good. In Tenchu 1 there was some kind of special ninja scroll
that would increase your attack strength massively, allowing you to kill an enemy pretty easily. That's gone in this version. And there was the special ninja leaf, which could resurrect you if you died. In Tenchu 1 you could take three of these with you, which made you effectively immortal. In Tenchu 2 you're only allowed one. (And it's much harder to earn the special weapons in the first place, as getting Grandmaster rating has been made much more difficult.) The end of level baddies are generally a lot harder in this version. There's a guy Rikimaru has to face who has an opium pipe, with which he blows smoke into Rikimaru's face, blinding him. He also has to fight a super-tough midget. Ayame has to fight a huge white tiger, which is very very difficult to beat, so much so that I was forced to find cheat codes on the Internet (I am weak). The very last villains you face aren't quite as fearsome as evil Lord Mei-ho in Tenchu 1, with his bolts of lightning and so on, but they certainly aren't pushovers. The villains you kill in the general game are still as endearingly stupid as ever, not to mention unable to see you if you aren't exactly level with them. And deaf, too. These stealth assassins make a ridiculous amount of noise as they run around, and you can noisily chop large wooden boxes in half within three inches of a villain and he still won't hear you. You also get to kill the odd animal on your travels, mostly wolves, although there is a bear in one mission. At one point Rikimaru was attacked by a shark, but I couldn't figure out a way to kill it. The levels are a lot more elaborate than in the earlier game, and occasionally there's a bit too much Tomb-Raider-esque running around, but not enough to seriously test my patience. And when you finish the game as both Ayame and Rikimaru (they have different sets of missions this time round), you get to play as Tatsumaru, who has about eight miss
ions. He starts out as a hero, but then loses his memory and falls in with the bad guys. Which is cool, although he still loses points for killing innocent civilians, just like the good guys do. His style is rather different, as he fights using his feet and fists more than his sword, which makes a refreshing change from the other two. There's no two-player version, which is a pity. There's a feature whereby you can design and edit your own levels and missions to play, but I haven't tried that out. So there it is. If you liked the first game you'll like this one. If you're looking for an absorbing PS 1 game to waste a couple of weeks with then I'd heartily recommend this, as long as you enjoy over the top violence in a nineteenth century Japanese setting. Guaranteed to make you jump up and down on the spot swearing at your TV at least once, which is the hallmark of a really good game.
Honour, dishonour, intrigue and revenge; they certainly had it melodramatic back then! And being one of three highly trained Azuma ninjas in feudal Japan is no exception. Tenchu 2, unlike most action adventure titles, is all about stealth and cunning over slash and stab. To this point it has to be said that breathing through a reed hidden underwater, before swimming under a bridge, climbing aboard a ship, slitting a guard’s throat with a quick flick of the wrist before depositing the lifeless corpse over the edge is immensely satisfying! There are three different characters in Tenchu 2, a large number of missions (even an excellent option to design your own), and a myriad of items to help you on your quest. There’s certainly enough in T2 to last awhile and the learning curve is well set. The problems however, arise in the control system. Admittedly when mastered it’s no real problem, but at first much patience is needed as it often seems awkward and unresponsive. This aside, and perhaps the difficulty of certain bosses in context to the level, Tenchu 2 is a well-recommended slice of blood and action – Japanese style.
TENCHU 2: BIRTH OF THE ASSASSIN Right after your first bloody kill you know that your parents aren't going to like this game but we all know that it is the finest slice of stealth action since MGS. Set in the midst of battling Japan, a family of ninja's gather to settle a few scores, seek revenge and bring peace to the nation. This involves sneaking, stalking, hiding, swining, running, swimming, crawling and generally scrambling through the levels to hunt out your victims and treasures. It also involves a lot of hacking. Ayame and Rikimaru are back with a bundle of new moves. The basis of the game hasn't changed much. The idea of hunting down treasures or seeking out evil warlords still remain but everything is much bigger. The game has bigger battlefields, cliff climbs, burning villages, and damp caves. Our ninja's can still use the ninja rope to move from swing from high branches and swimming and diving allow you to access unforseen areas. New bits aside, longer levels, more complex moves and the most stunning intro ever, Tenchu 2 still suffers from the same faults from before. A camera that sometimes swings into the worst possible angle ever and sluggish controls that stop these ninja stars beat the smooth movements of Solid Snake. Where it still has the orinigal faults, it still has the oringal goodies- good level desgin, a wicked sense of humor, and a nail-chomping atmosphere . The sloppy controls soon become second nature and scrappy graphics are soon thought to be brilliantly balanced between gameplay. This gamw has the ability to get you hooked until the final drop of blood-stained action.
The sequel to the innovative Tenchu, which was the first PSX game to really use stealth, Tenchu 2 has around 30 levels, a lot more than Tenchu 1, which was very short. The story intertwines with three characters and is more involving than the original. The graphics are smoother but not more detailed. The ninja weapons used aren't as original as Tenchu 1, and the fact you have to fight a boss at the end of every level removes a lot of the stealth element. The artifical intelligence is much more aggressive and enemies will chase you. The mission editor works well, but unless you've got a mate to swap levels with this feature will go unused. Tenchu 2 is a lot more involving in terms of story, but it does't have the same impact as the original. it is also less gory, with the death scenes blurred and no limbs can be hacked off.
Tenchu 2 is a brilliant masterpice.The graphics are first class. This game strait from the first training level has you gripped to the storyline. This game is a challenge so you have to think like a ninja. The "create your own level" is superb and can keep you and your mates playing at the same time.Unfortianatly there is no multiplayer game but heres a great idea for you to do with your mates.1) One of you go out of the room while the other edits his own level for you.2) Try and complete their level. The main storyline in this game dose not carry on from the first game so you dont have to know what went on in it to have to understand this one. Anyway a superb game and I would love if a 3rd came out, Thanx 4 readin.
You probably realised from my DooYoo name, RPG Freak, that I love RPG’s, but I don’t play Final Fantasy and Star Ocean all the time, I do play other types of games, one of my favourites being Tenchu 2: Birth of the assassins. Tenchu 2 is more or less the same as the original Tenchu, but bigger, better and much harder. Plus, it’s a prequel so you get to find out how it all began and this time you get three characters to choose from, our old favourites Rikimaru and Ayame and the new hidden character Tatsumaru. The graphics are much better this time around, with more attention to detail. There are also a few new additions in Tenchu 2, including swimming, loads more items for attacking your enemies with and even dragging your dead victims out of sight........oh and I can’t forget the great new mission editor, where you can make your own missions to torture your friends with. Okay, I’ve told you about all the advantages of the game and you must be thinking ‘wow it sounds like the perfect game’, but it does have a few flaws. There’s a boss at the end of every level, which takes away a bit of the realism of the game and can be a bit annoying. Also, like the original Tenchu, the camera angle can be a bit dodgy at times e.g. when you get cornered in battle (but you won’t get cornered.........will you?) Forgive the dodgy camera and the boss at the end of every level and you, like me, will probably end up loving this game. Details Publisher Activision. Developer Sony Music (Japan) Price £29.99 No. of players One. Extras Duel Shock. Memory Card.
This game was only released on Friday (08/09/00) so this review is more about first impressions which frankly arn't good.The first installment is my all time favourite Playstation title and the sequel was therefore greatly anticipated.Strangely for a sequel the graphics are worse with a cartoonish look replacing the previous dark and moody visuals.A meandering training session must be completed before the action begins,which is pretty pointless as the moves are the same as the original apart from the swimming.The first mission-which is as far as i've got involves getting lost in a big house and slashing guards whose AI is poor.On the whole very disappointing and one for the " wasted opportunity" file. 29/09/2000 Having now played this game for a couple of weeks my initial poo-poos seem harsh.The game and missions are massive,and although good value there is capacity to get lost a lot.I'm on Rikimaru's last mission but still stuck on Ayname's first-any hints? There are a lot of hidden items and i've only unlocked a frankly useless airbag.Hopefully the goodies will come.I still prefer the original but this is growing on me all the time.Now up to "worth a look"! 05/10/2000 Now we're cooking with gas.Several hours of effort have yielded fruit,with me on both character's last mission.I eventually found the princess-the key being that there are multiple levels in each section.If an enemy is registering as being close he could be on the floor above or below.New extra weapons include a blowgun and blinding dust-nice! Both characters cover the same enviroments but have different missions which keep the interest alive.You also get to play as the third character,Tatsamaru,once you've finished with the other two.The vistas are enormous and it is easy to get lost,although generally if you head to the top of the map you won't go far wrong. Getting better all the time a
nd definatley a slow boiler. 31/10/2000 Hurrah!After about a month of toil I've finally finished this game.Usually I can complete a game in a week so full marks for longevity.Once both characters missions have been completed you unlock the third character Tatsamaru who starts off a goodie but loses his memory and becomes a baddie.He has only seven missions but they are hard and it's a bonus all the same.When you finish all Tatsamaru's missions wait for the credits to finish and you get a video treat in which the identity of the blindfolded warrior is revealed. The design a mission mode also offers limitless options but this tinkering is not for me. From early misgivings I thourghly enjoyed this game and it has great graphics,cut scenes and gameplay.I just wish the darker tone of the original had been kept,although the producers probably though the characters should look younger and cuter as the game is a prequel.Great stuff and well worth your patience.
Tenchu 2, the game I have been waiting for! Much like the first, this game is all about sneaking about, killing people and re-capturing land. This time though it is harder! You can play as 1 of 3 characters- Rikimaru, Ayame or the newest of them all Tatsumaru (who you must unlock). Here is a question for you: Do you know how Rikimaru got his scar? All is revealed in this game. You must be more quiet and stealty in this game as you play in the day and night, there are less hiding places and you are not dressed in the proper outfit. Unlike the first game there are more weapons and levels. Rikimaru has 11 levels to complete, Ayame has 11 and Tatsumaru has 7. A total of 29 different levels to do before the game is truly over. You must use your head when looking for hiding places aswell as if you should move the body of the guard you just killed. Search him for more ninja items. Yet again there is a training mode, allowing you to master those tricky ninja stunts. This time though, it is more of a sperate level. When playing the game there are a few new things to look out for- booby traps, fences with bells, newly created guards and hiding bodies then searching them for goods. If you leave a body where it is, chances are the guards will see it and come looking for you. Good luck! Players:1 Mem Card Space:1 block