NVS Wargame - Ninja vs Samurai iPad Review

By , on April 17, 2013
Last modified 11 years ago

NVS Wargame - Ninja vs Samurai
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5


  • Vibrant aesthetic; creative character concepts.
  • Strategic play opens up significantly in later stages; makes online play extremely competitive.


  • One at a time turn-based gameplay can easily devolve in to a sluggish and pathetic game of 'cat and mouse' as you dance back and forth on the grid.


Disconnection issues aside, NVS Wargame can be a hard game to penetrate thanks to a sluggish early campaign and coy AI opponents in the story missions.

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As brilliant as a concept may be, if the player can't access your game it's going to fall flat. NVS Wargame - Ninja vs Samurai is an online only strategy title that suffers from many quirks, but most crippling of all is the instability of the servers you're forced to play on.

It's an odd decision on the part of the developer, especially as players can enjoy the single-player campaign without engaging in the multiplayer, however by pairing the two together (units and experience unlock and carry between each mode) this form of draconian protection is kept in place - if you can't connect, you're unable to play.

However, even when you can play things aren't always as exciting as they should be. For one, the turn-based combat can be tedious to engage in. Only one unit can be moved at a time, and barring certain exceptions (tile bonuses, power-ups, etc) you can only move one space on the hex-grid at a time too. It's far too easy to find yourself dancing back and forth waiting for the coy AI to finally step close enough to make any progress.

The 2D sprites are quite gorgeous, but they're static and only enhanced by a handful of special effects. It's a real shame as the character concepts are (at times) outrageous, and seeing how a lowly Bulb Samurai would try to attack a high-level Ghost Ninja could have been amusing (ala Battle Chess).

Alas the tactical depth of Ninja vs Samurai doesn't reveal itself until much later in the campaign, and by then you're likely to have already put the game down thanks to the poor pacing of the earlier stages and the wooden AI.

Consider picking it up on a sale if you don't mind slogging through the sluggish campaign to find its creamy filling.


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