Multiplicity, Diversity, Variety
The game will feature several modes of play. The confirmed ones thus far include a multi-level training mode, a storyline mode and a mission editor to allow you to create your own levels. Quite how big these levels will actually be in electronic terms is uncertain, but I assume the whole point will be the ability to transfer them between the Playstations of yourself and your friends, so with that in mind, the way in which they are programmed will presumably not be all too complex. Rikimaru and Ayame, the two ninjas mentioned in the plot, are both available for you to control. As is to be expected, both ninjas exhibit their own inherent strengths and weaknesses. Both storylines are interwoven with one another, but each mission will be playable from a totally different perspective. The 20 missions present in Tenchu II consist of 12 taking place in the night, dusk and day, and a two-level training mode. I know that doesn't add up, but I'm only following a press release here. Assuming Activision aren't innumerate, there's bound to be sense in that statement - try and find some.
Each ninja will have short and long-range weaponry at their disposal, including authentic guns and knives, swords, long-bows and lots of other terrifying and devastating items. Throwing stars and grenades, blinding dust and even exploding arrows will be available too. Players can also rummage around the bodies of fallen foes for alternative items. That's right, this game condones mugging people for things that you want. Shocking! While these weapons are rather tough, there's nothing quite as entertaining as kicking the crap out of your opponents using your bare hands. Combat stuff is important, but your ninja skills also extend to such diverse abilities as climbing, carrying, swimming, setting traps and concealing bodies. They do teach ninjas such interesting things these days.
I was quite a big fan of Tenchu: Stealth Assassins, so I'm rather hoping the sequel will be equally impressive. The Playstation could do with some more killer titles as it winds down to give way to the Playstation 2. The wealth of missions and two separate ninja perspectives should make Tenchu II: Birth of the Assassins an entertaining prospect. Might be one to watch… Release Date - September