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3 Ninjas Kick Back (SNES) Playthrough – NintendoComplete

30 Comments


A playthrough of Sony Imagesoft’s 1994 license-based platformer/beat ’em up for the Super NES, 3 Ninjas Kick Back.

Played through on the normal difficulty level as Tum-Tum.

3 Ninjas Kick Back is based on the kids’ movie of the same name. Pandering to kids in the early days of the summer of 1994, it was a largely forgettable sequel to an equally insipid movie released a few years prior.

The game features three brothers whose grandfather is hospitalized after an accident in Japan. He asks them to bring some important dagger to some martial arts poobah, and of course, they’re attacked, but with *a cliched list of nouns that imply character growth in a montage-like fashion*, they not only save the dagger, escape the bad guys, and make gramps proud, but they become better people because of the trials they had to face in order to succeed. *Gag* Just think of (a tame version of) Surf Ninjas and you’ve got the general gist of it.

Thankfully, the game is far better than the movie that it’s based on. The action is standard platforming fare – you collect coins, swing on vines, and kill anyone that looks unfriendly all as you make your way toward the right side of the screen. The controls are a bit touchy and imprecise, but once you figure out how to reliably gauge jumping, it’s fairly smooth sailing. There are a couple of frustrating bits, but for the most part the levels are straightforward and easy to get through.

You can also use wheelchair-bound hospital patients as weapons, which is a massive plus in my book.

I don’t believe it is a port of an existing game, but for me, 3 Ninjas Kick Me Back has always felt like a port of an Amiga game. The art and music style, the level design, and the general flow of the action feel a lot like the classic platformers made for Commodore’s cadillac of 1980s computers. Whether or not that is a good thing is entirely up to your taste, but I personally liked the style quite a bit. The bosses are the standouts – they’re often huge, and sometimes they manage to be both disturbing and hilarious – hello, nurse! (Truly, truly disturbing.)

I have to ask here: am I the only one that finds myself a bit surprised by hearing the little boy scream, “Let’s murderlize ’em!” on the character select screen? Granted, it was one of the most recognizable soundbites from the film, but in the modern day, it seems out-of-plave to have a little boy’s voice encouraging the player to “murderlize” his opponents. What does that even mean? (Murder+tenderize with an L added for flair/’tude, I guess?) My, how times have changed!

It’s too bad that the SNES port doesn’t have the talking Victor Wong head in the corner like the Sega CD version does. Those clips always reminded me of the ones of Craig Stadler on Pebble Beach Golf Links for the Saturn, and they’re definitely worth looking up for a good laugh.

Overall, 3 Ninjas Kick Back isn’t a bad game at all. The license was probably more of a hindrance than a selling point, the game looked pretty dated for a 1994 release, and it won’t keep you occupied for too long, but for a non-Disney license-based kids’ game, it’s surprisingly servicable.
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No cheats were used during the recording of this video.

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30 Comments

  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    JWiLLfoReaL

    Never ever played it

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Jac2Mac

    The Sega Genesis version of this game was published by Psygnosis.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    VShad0w Vyrrh

    39:27 eyyy

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    1985dossantos

    Wow, i almost thought you was playing with TAS.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Luiz Otávio

    nobody on YouTube make a vídeo about the secrets of the game? (my english is not very good).

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    da don

    That old guy in these cut scenes was in big trouble in little china

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Kevin Kirk

    That actually didn't look as bad as I was expecting due to the nature of the title, I half expected some Super Double Dragon crap. Lmao…

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    andrew sutter

    i am sad i don't see lufia II in your snes list. :-{

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Van Damage

    never knew this game was around.. wow..

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    David Samuel Blain

    I'd truly 💘 3 Ninjas Kick Back movie & SNES as well.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    SuperNESP

    8:51 Thought to myself, "That's a MasterCard? Am I really old?!" That from a 28 year old Asperger's man with a general knowledge base far older than he is…and who generally "rebukes" pop culture. How silly I am. 🙂

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Musikstra

    uh oh sumo is right, wtf is that monstrosity

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Chelo Chelini

    I'm here just for the description XD, instant like

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Big Al

    Looks surprisingly good for a movie tie in

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    knuclear200x

    SNES photo-realistic art looks very akin to back when 70's movie posters were still painted

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Hanferd

    I remember this movie in the cinema… haha

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    krystalfan

    i seen the movies as a kid not the last one where its die hard in shimisney shmland with hulk holgan
    i never knew there was a name

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    9/9/99 It's Thinking

    90s' at its finest.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    professors84

    I think I read this game was a rental exclusive but I've got nothing to prove that.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Eshaktaar

    0:55 That's not a dagger, Mr. Not Miyagi. That's a knife 😀

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    ԋαɳʂ ωolʇ

    this is from the movie right? i love it

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Dorelaxen

    Surf Ninjas vs. Three Ninjas. Let's do this.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Larry Laffer

    Yeah this does give me the vibes of an Amiga game. It might of even been one at one point but by 1994 it made more sense to put it on the SNES as by 1994 the Amiga was showing its age would soon be replaced by the Windows 95 architecture which could handle more labor intensive games like Doom.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Louis Keiflin

    Looks pretty decent.

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    Noah Stewart

    How do you actually play “3 Ninjas Kick Back” on SNES?

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    TheEVN7

    Cool

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    amylucio

    Own the game it's pretty fun like the movie

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    VShad0w Vyrrh

    I wonder if this would have been a Nintendo PlayStation game

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    VShad0w Vyrrh

    Lol a Sony game on SNES

    Reply
  • July 12, 2020 at 12:15 am
    NintendoComplete

    For as much as it tends to get derided, 3 Ninjas Kick Back shocked me with how not terrible it was. It's no Mario, but given that it is a non-Disney license-based platformer, I was a pleasantly surprised.

    Reply

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