Strider – Arcade Ninjas

Strider Logo

It is a remake of a 1989 arcade classic starring Strider Hiryu, a ninja with a quick swinging sword capable of slashing a group of troopers in an instant. He is incredibly acrobatic. It felt weird to me that there was no mouse needed to play Strider, just a keyboard. The keyboard is tolerable, although I was wondering if a gamepad is more appropriate for the PC version.

The story is very simple as it takes place in Kazakh in the Soviet era. Once you understand the setting you will slice various enemies while you rely on your map to reach your next objective. The gameplay is very fast paced and this is a good attribute for this game. The action is also impressive and gets more impressive as you progress. You will learn new moves such as the double jump. The double jump will be crucial to jumping over obstacles such as electrical fields and moving buzz saws. Other moves include the kunai, which is a plasma weapon used to shoot enemies and becomes crucial during boss fights.


There is plenty climbing up walls and ceilings and Strider has sickle that can be called a climbsickle. This is a very useful tool for navigating the different levels in an action platformer that is basically about moving horizontally and up and down. There are many collectibles in this game, some for upgrading Strider, others for cosmetic effect. The collectibles Strider can be in well hidden areas, so Strider must use his double jumps and catapults to good use in order to find these collectibles. The most important collectibles are health and energy upgrades that increase Strider’s max health and energy.

The enemies consist of troopers of different variations, some very basic, others carry shields that require more advanced moves to eliminate them. The enemies do become repetitive since they look the same and can respawn as you backtrack to some levels. The boss fights can be downright annoying, especially if you don’t learn each boss’ patterns. Every boss has a pattern of fighting, so you will have to go through several tries of button mashing to finally defeat a boss. One boss fight includes 3 sexy females after fighting two of them in previous encounters. Another includes a boss who uses water to attack you and you must learn how the pattern of water based attacks is used. Defense is very important in each boss fight. Too much offense and too little defense will get you killed without a doubt. The defense requires a number of keys to be pressed in order to avoid a boss’ attacks. These boss fights made me think that a gamepad might be better suited to fighting these bosses than the keyboard.


The graphics are never bland and are always bright. Every level of Kazakh City is vibrant. Levels include an abandoned train station, a research facility, a military prison, and other diverse locales. Strider can eventually travel using an eagle perch, which looks beautiful when using it as a travel point. There’s also a panther statue that can be used to travel from one destination to another.

Overall, I think Strider is a decent game that is a reminder of the arcade era of the 1980s. It can be frustrating to mash buttons in order to defeat tough bosses. I felt a sense of accomplishment when defeating these bosses, but I didn’t feel like I would like to fight them again for fun or replayability. The replay value I find in this game is the collectibles that are scattered throughout each level. It can be enjoyable if you’re looking for 1980s arcade fun and fast paced action platforming, but you should be aware of the frustration of pressing different buttons so quickly, so many times with the keyboard.

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