That headline kinda sucks, doesn't it? Sorry, but I didn't really know what to call this. It isn't quite a review, and calling it an "endorsement" sounds a bit whorish, so yeah. It's a thing. Because I like the new 3DS Shinobi.

Why? Because in an era where game developers are doing their best to make games accessible and user-friendly, Shinobi developer Griptonite opted to go in the opposite direction. The game is very similar to 2007's phenomenally nostalgic Contra 4, in that it pairs modern aesthetics and gameplay options with the kind of reflex-testing, old-school difficulty levels we collectively grew up with on the NES.

As a result, this isn't a game for everyone. If your kid just finished Super Mario 3D Land and wants a new 3DS game, do not buy him/her a copy of Shinobi. It will only end in tears. That said, if you're a child of the late-80s/early-90s like I am, and you miss the era of videogames that would straight up kick your ass if you didn't have awesome timing and a willingness to replay a certain section over and over until you get it just right, Shinobi should be on your shortlist of games to buy this holiday season.

Alright. That's all. I just wanted to make sure this thing got a bit of ink, lest it be completely lost in the deluge of bigger games. It can't compete with the production values of something like Skyrim, but for the right audience Shinobi can offer an even greater sense of achievement.

So yeah, consider this my good deed for the month.