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February 3, 2005
Tenchu: Fatal Shadows - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price

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Hiding around the corner.
Ninja games aren't a rare thing, not surprising given that most of the worlds console developers are based in Japan where ninja's existed many years ago. One of the foremost ninja game series' is Tenchu. After starting life being published by Activision the series has now moved to Sega with Tenchu: Fatal Shadows. Developers K2 were responsible for the previous game in the series, Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven, so hopefully they can expand on the franchise and provide and even better experience.

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A cut scene.
After the disappearance of Rikimura, the ninja Ayame began traveling the land in search of her mentor. Stumbling upon a burning village filled with the slain and dying, she quickly encounters the only survivor- another ninja named Rin. With years of training and hearts filled with revenge, the fierce warriors employ ancient skills--super vision, wall running, enemy freeze, and more--to determine who brought about this hideous crime. Certainly in terms of story the game seems to have all the key ingredients, but it will come down to gameplay to determine if this is a winner.

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Hiding behind the wall.
In terms of gameplay this is your fairly typical stealth/action game. The game includes two playable characters-Ayame from previous Tenchu games and an all new female lead, Rin. In terms of stealth you will need to avoid detection by moving bodies and swimming under the cover of water to keep out of the enemies sight. As well as standard weapons and items the game allows you to kill multiple enemies at once with new and improved stealth kill combos. In total Tenchu: Fatal Shadows includes three gameplay modes, 18 levels and plenty of unlockables to ensure you play the game right through to discover all the secrets.

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Visually this game's ok.
At this stage it remains to be seen how well the developers K2 (with assistance from From Software) have pulled off this game. The previous title, Tenchu: Weath of Heaven, was a solid effort that just needed a little more development to make it a great game. This game looks impressive at this stage with some impressive animation on the characters, but the real proof will be in the gameplay.

Expect a release in PAL territories through Sega in May at price still to be determined.