May 14, 2008 - Cheat Code Central went to the Microsoft Spring Showcase yesterday and, amongst other things, participated in a group interview with Tomonobu Itakagi. What does Itagaki have to say about Ninja Gaiden II?
TI: Tomonobu Itakagi - Creator of Ninja Gaiden II
CCC: Cheat Code Central
CCC: What are some of the changes that have been made to Ninja Gaiden II's difficulty?
TI: Enemies will follow you around wherever you go. The enemies actually can't go back to where they started unless you are dead, so they are relentless.
CCC: What aspects of the game have recently been improved upon?
TI: We are constantly making a ton of improvements on the game. Most are done to firm up the gameplay. You guys are actually very lucky to get to play this game today... Team Ninja doesn't usually show off early versions of their games, but we are today. We just want to make the game more accessible to the player.
CCC: Speaking of being more accessible, how will the game's different difficulty settings help to make this game more approachable to players who were perhaps frightened off by the original's exceptionally high difficulty level?
Well, when we tried to make the first game easier, we had to basically turn up your character's attacks and health so that you were basically on performance-enhancing drugs. The architecture for Ninja Gaiden II, however, has been built from the ground up to balance all of these difficulty settings naturally. We also hope that the game shows the player how to improve their skills and doesn't just make them overpowered. We give a lot of feedback to the player that helps them to get better, and it also gives the player a good sense of accomplishment.
CCC: What can we expect from the adaptive A.I. in the game?
TI: The A.I. will react to the player realistically. That means there are no predetermined outcomes in any of the fights. The enemies will not necessarily react the same way every time you perform an attack.