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Impression

Izuna 2: The Unemployed Ninja Returns

05.16.2008

Michael Cunningham
Public Relations

Ninja Welfare Attack
Ninja Welfare Attack

Izuna's been unemployed for a while now, so we were glad to see her back in action in Izuna 2: The Unemployed Ninja Returns. Izuna 2 is once again a dangerous dungeon crawling, roguelike adventure. I say dangerous, because for someone that has little to no experience with these type of games, I was dead very quickly. Dungeon crawling takes a special patience that I lack at times, having grown up with games that allow me to press one button to attack and slaughter my enemies.

I jumped right into the closest dungeon, which was about five or so dungeons into the main game. At the start of the dungeon, I was given the option of selecting two characters from a set of three. I chose Izuna and Shino, since I recognized them from their cameos in Rondo of Swords, and figured that they'd work better than the third character who was only level one. I was informed that unlike other roguelike games, levels are not lost upon death, only items, so that relieved me a little bit. Before I knew it, I was plowing through the randomly generated dungeon with the spunky societal leech, Izuna.

Sadly, my time of looting items and trading blows with slime creatures was cut short as I was quickly surrounded by what seemed to be every single monster in the dungeon. I was quickly sliced into little ninja bits and send packing, but all was not lost, Shino then instantly replaced Izuna on the combat field. That lasted about two hits. Needless to say, I'm a nOOb when it comes to rougelike games, so don't take my butchering as the standard fare of this title.

Bosom Buddies
Bosom Buddies

My Atlus guide suggested for the sake of my sanity, I take my now itemless Izuna back to the games first dungeon. Things seemed to be much smoother this time around, but that could have been due to the fact that I was likely over leveled for the area. I explored many floors of this cave, picking up items all along the way. Once my inventory was full, my attempt to acquire a sword was foiled, however, I was given the option to eat the sword. That netted me about 50 HP and likely some indigestion later on. From my earlier losses, it was evident that hording items was a waste; you know the old adage, "he who dies with the most toys still dies." It turns out that this holds true for penniless ninjutsu, so I used items that restored 5000 HP to heal my 400 HP character as often as needed. But once again, I ended up getting trapped by a swarm of enemies. This time I was informed that by pressing the R trigger and hitting select, I could perform a powerful tag attack. The screen then swaps to a close up of Izuna's chest and of Shino's backside before swapping back to the sprite-based dungeon in which hellfire torched all of the nearby enemies. Hurray, the winner was me.

I didn't get to experience much of Izuna 2's story, but it did seem like the focus of the game was on dungeon exploring. For those who cannot get enough of this recent influx of this style of game should check out Izuna 2 when it is released on July 22. For people like me, who had little experience with roguelikes before this, don't get discouraged as Izuna 2 is forgiving and you do die less after you get the swing of things.


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Console:
· DS

Release:
· 07.22.2008

Publisher:
· Atlus

Developer:
· Success

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