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The Underappreciated Game Boy Advance Action Game You Likely Didn't Play

The Game Boy Advance's library was practically overflowing with amazing action games, which is likely why so many fans have fond memories of the handheld device.

Major franchises, such as Sonic the Hedgehog, The Legend of Zelda, Metroid, and Castlevania, flooded the system with high-caliber releases. Then there were the more slept-on titles within the thriving genre, such as Astro Boy: Omega Factor, Gunstar Super Heroes, and Klonoa: Empire of Dreams. Nintendo's portable machine was pretty much jam-packed with the types of exciting action games that still enthrall gamers to this very day.


One of the main types of action games that can be seen across numerous consoles are the ones that let you live out your ninja-based fantasies. The Game Boy Advance made sure to offer that type of experience with a little known action platformer from Konami/Hudson Soft. That underrated and underplayed game is known as Ninja Five-O.

Ninja Five-O is a little known yet super enjoyable Konami/Hudson Soft action platformer

Ninja Five-O wears its Shinobi, Rolling Thunder, and Bionic Commando inspirations on its sleeve.

It puts players in the role of a heroic ninja named Joe Osugi who sets out to eliminate the Mad Masks terrorist group that have taken innocents hostage. The game gives players a non-linear approach at the start of their adventure as they get to choose from three stages to hop into first. Each stage is constructed to give you a series of rooms to explore and a whole lot of baddies to vanquish. Joe's armory includes shurikens, a trusty blade, ninja-based magic, binoculars, and even a grappling hook.


Ninja Five-O garnered plenty of positive reviews. IGN awarded it with an 8.5, Nintendo Life gave it a 9, and its overall Metacritic score comes in at an 82. Even with its high scores, the game didn't really do well as far as sales is concerned. IGN noted that "even though Ninja Five-O wasn't a huge seller during its original release, it's an incredibly tough to come by cartridge because it was produced in limited quantities."