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Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven

Platform : PlayStation2
Rated: Mature
4.3 out of 5 stars 130 customer reviews
Metascore: 79 / 100

Price: $49.99 + $3.29 shipping
Only 1 left in stock.
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Product Description

Product Description

As a cunning stealth assassin, you must defeat the mysterious Tenrai and his army of ninjas and lords of darkness before they conquer 16th-century Japan.


Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven is the third in the successful mission-based stealth series that first appeared on the PlayStation in 1998; few changes have been made to the basic format. Players can once again choose to be either Rikimaru, the silent sword-wielding assassin, or Ayama, the acrobatic younger ninja. Both characters pass through the same game world, but each has slightly different goals that take them on different routes. A third character can be unlocked later on.

During the first mission, you're required to choose a number of weapons to aid you in your immediate tasks. Throughout the game, more and more weapons--from melee to ranged weapons--are added to your arsenal depending on your performance during each level; your chosen weapons dictate how you approach the mission goals. The silent approach is always encouraged, and there's a variety of graphically satisfying stealth kills that will only work if you remain elusive and strike unexpectedly and silently.

Aside from the stealth kills, the game is a mixed bag in terms of its graphics. Light shimmers off your sword menacingly, but the environments are bland and repetitive, and the game fails to maximize on differences between light and dark areas in ways that might have added to the experience. Also, the stealth dynamic is made less challenging by the shortsightedness and slow reactions of the enemy guards and the iffy AI. Since guards give up searching for you within seconds and are unable to follow you through doors, this potentially atmospheric and tactical stealth game is actually just a hack-and-slash arcade romp. Multiplayer options are included, though, so if you feel the need for a more realistic opponent, you may want to call a friend.

Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven is still an enjoyable experience despite its flaws. It’s just a shame that, after doing so much to establish and define the stealth-game genre, it fails to raise the bar or introduce any novel elements. The game feels more like an update of the first Tenchu, and while this is no bad thing, fans will probably be expecting more. --Chris Ryan, Amazon.co.uk

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By William Perdue on April 10, 2003
Using the same controls as Tenchu: Stealth Assassins (hurrah)!This is the best game Activision has come up with. This is a maximum recovery over Tenchu II. I really enjoy the ease of controls over the characters. Some games get overly complicated and it detracts from the enjoyment. I also was impressed by the variety in the missions. In previous Tenchu installments, each character played exactly the same missions. You play each mission and win different ratings, special items and new abilities. It has few drawbacks (load time and some awkward camera angles), but this is a mission based game and if you use your controller and special items correctly, all difficulties can easily be overcome. You have 3 characters to pick from. Each has his/her own special missions and each mission has 3 different layouts. The difference between layouts are that enemies are positioned in different arrangements and in different strengths. Favorite character: Tessu. Daytime doctor, nighttime assassin. For some unknown reason, Tessu's attacks include animated x-ray views. It really hurts to see an enemy's neck snap! Ouch! Hoping to see more of Tessu in future Tenchu games. Rikkimaru has 2 varying outcomes. They depend upon choices you make mid-game. Ayame is the most agile. Her assignments are a bit tougher, but she is definitely a capable character.
So, if you are into sneaking and you get a satisfying feeling from taking out aggressions against some more than deserving foes, THIS IS THE GAME TO GET!! I rate it as best mission based game ever.
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I've long been a fan of the Tenchu series, and still occasionally pop one of the two PSOne games in my console. As good as those games were, though, Tenchu 3 beats them hands down. The graphics are much better, as you would expect. Controls are also much improved, largely due to the incorporation of analog control. Steal kills are still the mainstay of the game, and the cut scenes for them have been improved. I especially like Ayame's stealth kills.
At its core, Tenchu 3 is essentially the same game as its predecessors, and this is a good thing. The developers tweaked the controls and the AI, and worked on the graphics, but gameplay remains largely unchanged. One great improvement is the size of the levels. There are numerous ways, usually, to get to your final destination, and you can either opt for the quick and direct route, or sneak around and kill anything that moves.
I would only recommend this game for patient gamers. Not because it's very difficult to progress through the levels, but because it is difficult to get through them while still getting "Grand Master" ratings (at the end of each level you are ranked according to how good of a ninja you were -- the more stealth kills and the fewer times you are spotted, the higher your ranking), and doing so requires that you sneak, wait patiently while your enemy moves into position, and then go for a stealth kill. Each level has three layouts to play, each with enemies in placed in different positions. If you're like me, you'll want to play each level at each layout until you get the Grand Master ranking for each, making this a long and challenging game.
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It seems if a game isn't absolutely perfect in every way, someone will find a knock on it. All the reviews I have read have something to say about the AI or the fight engine or something, and for people who haven't played the game, they might be turned off and never try it out. Well, I want to make sure that doesn't happen. Tenchu WOH is one of the jewels in my (admittedly small) library of games. Never mind the comparisons with the previous two titles, this game is just downright fun no matter how you slice it (no pun intended). The gameplay is unique (say what you want about Splinter Cell and Metal Gear Solid, none of them gave you the total mobility of a grapple hook), and the attention to the details of old Japanese culture is always a plus. The stealth aspect of this game is, of course, the key element and it is fun. If you're a fan of all-out fighting, then don't bother. You can pick fights with guards, but they are relatively simple, and not what the game is about. The real fun comes when you sneak around the shadows, looking out on unsuspecting enemies, leap out and deliver a quick and deadly blow, then quickly sink back into hiding. In order to set up these highly satisfying scenarios, however, you need to be patient. But it's worth it. Witness the fun of murdering one guard right behind another guy's back, then offing him when he turns around. Or, if you don't want to try that hard, just keep your distance and use your blow gun. The gameplay is unique, graphics are nice, the music sets up a nice ambiance for the game, and the small shortcomings such as camera angles and limited man-to-man fighting do not take away from the fun. A must-rent at the very least.
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By A Customer on April 2, 2003
I have always been a fan of the Tenchu series, the first being a totally unique experience(Remember MGS 1 was released AFTER Tenchu 1)and was the first true 'Stealth Simulator'. The Prequel was OK , with some interesting new characters, and storylines, - but it just tried too hard to cover too many issues, spreading itself thinly, leaving many fans dissappointed.'Wrath of Heaven'-whilst not being perfect is a glorious return to form (and formula) On the positive, although it does not present the most cutting edge graphics, it still looks very good - atmospheric lighting, smoothly animated characters and sublime weather effects. Gameplay has also been addressed and re-worked- you now feel much more capable of defending yourself, should you have to- the camera work and lock-on button do not always offer the best view, but it is tolerable. The stealth kills still look great- smooth and gory( Tesshus'are the most grimacingly graphic) but I do agree with one of the other reviewers' comments, that a few more to choose from would have maintained more freshness to a very common event in the game. The idea of adding the option to earn youreslf extra skills through stealth kills is a great innovation, and gives you something to strive for other than high scores- some of which are very useful-especially clinging to ceiling and offensive blocking. Lastly, on the positive, the characters, some are reassuringly present, Rikimaru,Ayame(deadlier than ever),Lord Ghoda,Onikage(insane!) all look very good, with new additions such as Ganda, Jinnai and Tenrai who all can present a considerable challenge to those who don't utilise their skills effectively. Tesshu is the unlockable character and a breath of fresh air, admittedly controlling Tatsumaru was fun in the prequel, but Tesshu is completely different.Read more ›
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