Ninja Versus Ninja Mini Review

Ninja Versus Ninja game in play

A game that I received as a sweetener in a math trade recently is Ninja Versus Ninja.

In Ninja Versus Ninja, each player takes on the role of a feuding dojo.  In order to prove yourself  against your rival dojo (you can tell they are rivals because they wear different colors of the exact same outfit), you are attempting to sneak into their dojo as far as you can, and then sneak back out.  Each turn, you will roll two four-sided dice, and this determines your movement for the turn.  On each turn, you are only allowed to make a single 90 degree turn.  You also cannot move through other ninjas.  However, if you are in your opponent's dojo, then you are also allowed to make a single "U" turn by moving towards the far end of their dojo and then immediately turning around and moving towards your own.  If you ever end your movement directly on an opponent's ninja, then you capture that ninja and remove it from the board.  Finally, each ninja can only spend three turns outside of his home dojo (after that, he has to use the bathroom, and he really hates public restrooms).  If he isn't back to the home dojo at the end of the third turn, then he is captured.  However, if he does make it back in time, then you score points based on how far you successfully infiltrated your opponent's dojo.  The first person to score seven points (or knock out all of his opponent's ninjas) is the winner.

minis from Ninja Versus Ninja
The ninja minis look great, and make you want to play it
The first pro for Ninja Versus Ninja is that it is a great game for kids.  The ninjas are amazing looking, and the game itself is pretty simple.  There are some strategic elements to it - like whether you want to move your ninjas in the way of your opponent's ninja in order to force them to use extra movement to get back across to their home dojo.  But, the bulk of the game is a simple press your luck mechanic.  So, whereas I think that very young children might not catch the strategic element of getting in the way of your opponent, I think that this can be played and enjoyed by kids of just about any age.  In fact, I have played this game with a four year old, and I know that he was able to play it without any real problems.

Unforunately, due to the simplistic nature of the game, I think that the real con for it is that there's simply not much there.  If you are looking for a game to play with kids, then this is a great option.  But, if you're looking for a game that can be played by both kids and parents where both parties will enjoy themselves, I don't think that this is a great choice.  Somewhat like Uno, though I think a lot of kids will like this game, I just think that most parents will get tired of it quickly.

Overall, there's not much to this review because there's not much to this game.  I give it a 6.5/10, because I think that, as a game for kids to play, it will do quite well.  However, as someone without kids, I will be moving this game out of my closet in the near future.

If you're looking for kid's games, you might also check out Hey, That's My Fish!, The Big Fat Tomato Game, and City Square Off.

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