Despite director Tomonobu Itagaki’s departure from Tecmo’s Team Ninja, the company is still going ahead with new entries in the series’ he was formerly in charge of: Tecmo has announced that Ninja Gaiden 3 is scheduled to hit the Xbox 360 and PS3 on March 20th, and that players who purchase the collector’s edition of the game or preorder it will get early access to the DoA 5 demo.
In addition to the demo, the collector’s edition also comes with an art book, a soundtrack CD, and a figurine of some kind. Sadly, the special edition will only be available at Gamestop, so if you’re like me and prefer to shop elsewhere (due to numerous bad experiences with all of my local GS’s,) you’re either going to have to skip the collector’s edition or compromise your values.
While the DoA5 demo included in the collector’s edition includes 4 characters (series stalwarts Ayane, Hitomi, Hayate, and Ninja Gaiden’s Ryu Hayabusa,) players who preorder the regular edition of the game will only have access to two characters: preordering from Gamestop gets you a demo with Ryu and Hitomi, while reserving your game with Amazon lets you play with Ayane and Hayate.
I haven’t seen enough of either Ninja Gaiden 3 or Dead or Alive 5 to formulate a real opinion about either, but it’ll be interesting to see how these series’ fair without Itagaki at the helm.