Mark of the Ninja (stealth side-scroller from Klei) catch-all

I've picked it up. Looking forward to getting into it once I'm done with Fez :).

Finished it today. Very good!

This was the best surprise out of the various Steam Sales for me. Such a delightful little title.

I do kind of wish there was more variety of how you could stealth kill. Also every time I tried for a kill-less run, there was always 1 random kill somewhere in there I didn't remember at all.

Quintin_Stone wrote:

I do kind of wish there was more variety of how you could stealth kill. Also every time I tried for a kill-less run, there was always 1 random kill somewhere in there I didn't remember at all.

I found it easiest to do a no kill run when wearing the stealth suit. Since you aren't carrying your sword, you can't kill.

Hmm, hadn't thought of that.

Just finished it now. Great game.

I didn't like it for the first 30 minutes -- the killing was a bit off-putting. Then I just decided to not kill anyone for the rest of the game, and it really clicked. A few nights ago after solving some tricky room or something, I announced "I'm a ninja." out loud to a completely empty apartment. Solving some of those stages were really satisfying, and the stealth was very well implemented, as just about everyone is saying. And more games should have great conclusions like that. The end sequence/reveal was a neat little "ahhhhh, nice" moment.

I played using the teleport power once I achieved it, but my time in the stealth suit was definitely my favorite part of the game. Running with no sound felt incredible. Watch out for indirect kills, though, like falling chandeliers and spike traps.

Spoiler:

Although of course not killing anyone meant that it wasn't as obvious that they were hallucinations in the last level.

Archangel wrote:

A few nights ago after solving some tricky room or something, I announced "I'm a ninja." out loud to a completely empty apartment.

Archangel then stealthily wrote:
Spoiler:

Although of course not killing anyone meant that it wasn't as obvious that they were hallucinations in the last level.

Some of us are thick enough that we killed everyone and still didn't notice.

Archangel wrote:

I didn't like it for the first 30 minutes -- the killing was a bit off-putting. Then I just decided to not kill anyone for the rest of the game, and it really clicked.

Interesting. After I played Dishonored for a few hours where I was going on a low-chaos minimal-kills run I went back to Mark of the Ninja trying the same thing. After some frustration I decided to just let loose, and from there on the game became a Hell of a lot more fun to me. It has especially been invigorating to play earlier levels with all the stealth kill options unlocked.

Guess it just depends on where your head space is while playing the game.

Unfortunately, I haven't experimented with any of the other suits. The default seems to best suit my needs, which is to not be seen before shoving my blade into someone's heart or neck. Most of the suits seem to push you to a specific play style, none of which match what I prefer.

Maybe I'll try a couple no-kill runs with the stealth suit, though.

I'm in the process of 100% this one (PC). I've finished 100%'ing all levels on the main game, and I'm working through the New Game Plus... only have 1 (steam) achievement to go (the finish the NG+)...

I love this game, would have been in my 2012 best-of, if I'd played it then... 2013's 2012 Game Of The Year!

ccesarano wrote:
Archangel wrote:

I didn't like it for the first 30 minutes -- the killing was a bit off-putting. Then I just decided to not kill anyone for the rest of the game, and it really clicked.

Interesting. After I played Dishonored for a few hours where I was going on a low-chaos minimal-kills run I went back to Mark of the Ninja trying the same thing. After some frustration I decided to just let loose, and from there on the game became a Hell of a lot more fun to me. It has especially been invigorating to play earlier levels with all the stealth kill options unlocked.

Guess it just depends on where your head space is while playing the game.

Unfortunately, I haven't experimented with any of the other suits. The default seems to best suit my needs, which is to not be seen before shoving my blade into someone's heart or neck. Most of the suits seem to push you to a specific play style, none of which match what I prefer.

Maybe I'll try a couple no-kill runs with the stealth suit, though.

It's the only suit I use. I find that not killing guys is a great challenge, and also, for me, is a bit easier.

Finally got around to playing this on the PC. Keyb+Mouse is a very poor choice, which worked out great for me: this game finally pushed me over the fence and I got a controller hooked up to the PC and it was a completely new game.

I picked the "wrong" ending the first time around and I'm unhappy because I knew I was picking the wrong ending as I was walking towards that option.

The game has incredibly polished mechanics that make me want another game just like it. MotN II can't come soon enough.

Hobbes2099 wrote:

I picked the "wrong" ending the first time around and I'm unhappy because I knew I was picking the wrong ending as I was walking towards that option.

Gaah! I got all the way to the end, and the game does not seem to want to let me choose either option.

I can walk over to either character, and the "press left mouse button" icon shows up, outlined in red (indicating attack). I can press it once, and my character strikes a pose but does nothing else. Another "press left mouse button" icon shows up (not in red), and I can press left mouse as many times as I like, with no effect. I can press E to escape from that situation, but that's all I can do.

I have greatly enjoyed the game thus far, too. I even planned to go back and complete missing items for earlier levels (which I don't usually do).

Edit: LOL, OK almost immediately after posting the above, I figured out that it wanted me to swipe the mouse (even though the arrow icon didn't appear). Game over, off to New Game Plus!

Hobbes2099 wrote:

Finally got around to playing this on the PC. Keyb+Mouse is a very poor choice, which worked out great for me: this game finally pushed me over the fence and I got a controller hooked up to the PC and it was a completely new game.

I picked the "wrong" ending the first time around and I'm unhappy because I knew I was picking the wrong ending as I was walking towards that option.

The game has incredibly polished mechanics that make me want another game just like it. MotN II can't come soon enough.

There's a wrong ending? What makes the left side ending different from the right side in terms of which is "wrong" or "right"?

I picked one ending and then YouTubed the other.

AP Erebus wrote:

There's a wrong ending? What makes the left side ending different from the right side in terms of which is "wrong" or "right"?

Let me wrap in spoilers, since the game is still relatively new;

Spoiler:

For me, the correct ending is killing yourself, respecting the canon of the story, and avoiding the other consequence; becoming a very powerful being that will wreck havoc and destruction.

When I first approached the ninja master, I was hesitant to believe whether I was really going insane, or if there was an actual corruption of the clan. As soon as I clicked the Action Button, I realized I was wrong; that regardless of the corruption, whether real or hallucinated, the main character had an oath to full fill. The animation of the ninja becoming an apparition only confirmed my fears of doing "the wrong thing".

Replaying the last scene and killing myself, only felt like watching it on YouTube, and I felt that I could not right the wrong decision I had taken.

In my defense, as I clicked on the wrong ending first, I was hoping for more game. That after killing the ninja master, I would go to further levels and kill those who had plotted against the clan.

AP Erebus wrote:

There's a wrong ending? What makes the left side ending different from the right side in terms of which is "wrong" or "right"?

Spoiler:

"Have the hallucinations started yet? Soon you'll be seeing enemies where there are none around." Brilliant.

It becomes increasingly clear through the game that Ora is a figment of your imagination, a result of the corrupting influence of the tattoos. She is the manifestation of your defiance, the incarnation of your refusal to sacrifice yourself after your sacred mission. "She" is the main enemy in the game. She is also the title character, which I thought was very, very cool.

The clincher about her nature was Master Azai's innocent and disbelieving question, "Who are you listening to?". There was no one else around in that scene.

And just before this, any doubt you may have had about "her" motives was made -- rather painfully, I felt -- obvious by her exhortation to kill absolutely everyone in the clan. That was the smack-you-in-the-head moment that she was the pure quintessence of your megalomania.

Ninjas are not homicidal maniacs; they are the embodiment of honor. Above all else, ninja must bring honor to himself, his family, and his clan. The "good" ending must reflect this, and its does; the "bad" ending represents disobedience and temptation -- and presumably, madness -- very un-ninja-like qualities.

At the end, I paused only long enough to reflect upon my shame and dishonor. And then came the redemption. It was magnificent.

So I finished playing on New Game Plus, and have all but two achievements:
* Descendant of Iga - I have 3 stars on all except the very last level. I've tried that one several times, and always end up with 2
* Marked - I have all the upgrades except one, and have 3 of the 5 points required to buy that one but haven't scraped up the last 2 points.

I assume I'll just have to kill more dudes to get 3 stars on that last level, but I never did figure out what exactly earned me points to get upgrades. Are there a limited number available?

It's a combination of finding all three scrolls in a level, getting all three optional objectives, and getting all three "stars" as you call them to increase your score. Each level gets you a maximum of 9 honor.

ccesarano wrote:

It's a combination of finding all three scrolls in a level, getting all three optional objectives, and getting all three "stars" as you call them to increase your score. Each level gets you a maximum of 9 honor.

Ah, OK, then hopefully when I complete the final level I'll get those other 2 points.

BTW, "stars" is the term used in the Steam achievements list. I'm not sure why they chose it.

Hello to another South-Jerseyan. I'm originally from Burlington County.

An easy way to get more points is to use items that cause terror and just use more ninja tools in general. Also if I remember correctly the Hangman's Hymn stealth kill is worth more points and you can use it to terrorize other guards. You can also get more bonus points for distracting enemies and hiding their bodies, so be on on the look out for that. Items that stun enemies also give bonus points but not quite as much as terrorizing.

Also a non-lethal run will give you enough points for the stars, but there is a tricky part where it's difficult to avoid killing two of the seekers. I did it by luring them away and then hitting the switch but it took a lot of trial and error. I saw a Youtube video of someone get the non-lethal bonus even though they killed those two with the switch, but that didn't work for me on one run.

I think that I'm most of the way through now, this really seems like a 2D version of Thief, which is awesome.

This is a great damn game. If anyone is reading this thread, idly waiting for the next big wave of major titles to hit, this would make a superb filler.

Hrdina wrote:
ccesarano wrote:

It's a combination of finding all three scrolls in a level, getting all three optional objectives, and getting all three "stars" as you call them to increase your score. Each level gets you a maximum of 9 honor.

Ah, OK, then hopefully when I complete the final level I'll get those other 2 points.

BTW, "stars" is the term used in the Steam achievements list. I'm not sure why they chose it.

Hello to another South-Jerseyan. I'm originally from Burlington County.

Hrm, Xbox Live may use those same terms as well. I never looked at the achievements for this game, though.

I'm Gloucester County, but by the end of this week I'll be living in PA. Good to know there's another in the area in case we try a Philly area Slap'n'Tickle.

Hrdina wrote:

So I finished playing on New Game Plus, and have all but two achievements:
* Descendant of Iga - I have 3 stars on all except the very last level. I've tried that one several times, and always end up with 2
* Marked - I have all the upgrades except one, and have 3 of the 5 points required to buy that one but haven't scraped up the last 2 points.

I assume I'll just have to kill more dudes to get 3 stars on that last level, but I never did figure out what exactly earned me points to get upgrades. Are there a limited number available?

I found it easiest to get 3 stars by going for full stealth runs. The bonuses you get for "no alarms" and "no enemies killed" make it a cinch.

Archangel wrote:
AP Erebus wrote:

There's a wrong ending? What makes the left side ending different from the right side in terms of which is "wrong" or "right"?

Spoiler:

"Have the hallucinations started yet? Soon you'll be seeing enemies where there are none around." Brilliant.

It becomes increasingly clear through the game that Ora is a figment of your imagination, a result of the corrupting influence of the tattoos. She is the manifestation of your defiance, the incarnation of your refusal to sacrifice yourself after your sacred mission. "She" is the main enemy in the game. She is also the title character, which I thought was very, very cool.

The clincher about her nature was Master Azai's innocent and disbelieving question, "Who are you listening to?". There was no one else around in that scene.

And just before this, any doubt you may have had about "her" motives was made -- rather painfully, I felt -- obvious by her exhortation to kill absolutely everyone in the clan. That was the smack-you-in-the-head moment that she was the pure quintessence of your megalomania.

Ninjas are not homicidal maniacs; they are the embodiment of honor. Above all else, ninja must bring honor to himself, his family, and his clan. The "good" ending must reflect this, and its does; the "bad" ending represents disobedience and temptation -- and presumably, madness -- very un-ninja-like qualities.

At the end, I paused only long enough to reflect upon my shame and dishonor. And then came the redemption. It was magnificent.

Dang, that was insightful. Seriously, I missed that when I played through the game. You may have given me a reason to play this game again.

ccesarano wrote:
Hrdina wrote:
ccesarano wrote:

It's a combination of finding all three scrolls in a level, getting all three optional objectives, and getting all three "stars" as you call them to increase your score. Each level gets you a maximum of 9 honor.

Ah, OK, then hopefully when I complete the final level I'll get those other 2 points.

BTW, "stars" is the term used in the Steam achievements list. I'm not sure why they chose it.

Hello to another South-Jerseyan. I'm originally from Burlington County.

Hrm, Xbox Live may use those same terms as well. I never looked at the achievements for this game, though.

I'm Gloucester County, but by the end of this week I'll be living in PA. Good to know there's another in the area in case we try a Philly area Slap'n'Tickle.

Well, I used to live in South Jersey, but (sadly) I live closer to NY now.

I did finally finish the game. It turned out that I was missing two "stars" - the final mission, and one in Above the Bottomless Chasm. I hadn't realized I needed that one because I was not checking all the missions when going through the "level select" screen. The arrows only move you through the first & last mission of each location (Hisomu, Oshi, Castle, Ruins). For the two locations with 4 missions (Oshi & Castle), you have to click on the buildings in the middle to see the other two missions.

In any event, I really enjoyed playing this game, despite the fact that parts of it ran really poorly on my machine, which is 7 years old or so and single-core. The sections with rain or sand storms were in slow motion.

FYI, Mark of the Ninja is on sale for 66% off ($5 instead of $15) on Steam this weekend.

I love stealth games (Thief, Deus Ex, Dishonored) and have been looking forward to giving this a try. But boy, I am totally not getting it. Been playing for about 2 hours, and find it boring, with punctuations of frustration. It is surprisingly easy, except when the controls mess me up (e.g., climbing a wall, and push A expecting to open a grate, but accidentally leap into a laser and die). The 2d view plus having the map makes it too obvious what to do. I'm just finishing "A Change In Course." I also feel like the story hasn't started yet - but I'm seeing all these tantalizing long spoilers, so does it the story ramp up? If I'm not feeling the gameplay at this point, is it worth continuing?

I dunno. I was hooked right away. I really like the engine. If you don't, hmm, I dunno.

They do a good job with storytelling here, but they do it subtly, and you may not realize it. If you're not liking the game, if it frustrates and/or bores you, I suspect it will only get worse, not better. The way the game works more or less requires buy-in and and active thought from you, and if you're not enjoying it and paying attention, you're not likely to get much out of it.

MrShoop wrote:

I love stealth games (Thief, Deus Ex, Dishonored) and have been looking forward to giving this a try. But boy, I am totally not getting it. Been playing for about 2 hours, and find it boring, with punctuations of frustration.

I find myself largely in the same boat, and I expected to really love the game. I got to the third level and found myself hoping it'd be over soon. I looked at the contents of a FAQ and found there are 13. I just don't have that much more in me.

Being that the game's digital, I may try again sometime, perhaps if there's a dry spell in the summer. But for now this holds a rare and ignominious distinction: games I really anticipated, bought on day one, and couldn't be bothered to finish.