Mark of the Ninja
Developer: Klei Entertainment
Platforms: PC, Xbox 360
Release Date: September 7, 2012
Stealth-action is a hard genre to master, but the folks who brought us Shank seem to have a pretty good handle of it if Mark of the Ninja is anything to go by. What makes the genre so difficult to get right is balancing the feeling of power with the necessary vulnerabilities that make the stealth elements worthwhile. Mark of the Ninja gets this fantastically right by making you a lethal force in the shadows, but nearly immediately gone in the light.
High-quality animation is what seperates most Klei games from other indie titles and Mark of the Ninja is no exception. Everything is fluid and natural, the love put into each frame of the spritesheets can be felt as you watch your little ninja bounce around walls and creep underfoot.
To top it off, there's a significant amount of content available in the game. What's surprising is that despite there only being so many truly unique level designs one can implement in a game like this, the addition of new mechanics, weapons, and challenges makes it feel consistantly fresh as you progress.