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Recent Updates

Ninja Gaiden Restoration + Optional Free Movement

Hack of Ninja Gaiden


This is a set of two patches. The first one aims to make the English Ninja Gaiden release closer to its original Japanese version while fixing a significant bug. The second patch has the same features as the first, but also serves as an optional remixed version that can be considered an easy type.

Changes for the restoration patch:

  • The player is sent to level 6-3 rather than 6-1 upon dying against the final boss trio.
  • Item placements are reverted to their Japanese originals, as evident in stages such as 4-1 where they reach the very top of the screen again.
  • Ken’s name is changed to Joe like in the Japanese version and 3D series. Ninja Dragon is also changed to Dragon Ninja.
  • Typos and grammatical errors are fixed such as Irene’s “your safe” line.
  • Lines containing “damn” and “hell” from the unfinished script (which ultimately made their way into Ninja Gaiden Trilogy for the SNES) are restored.

Additional changes for the free movement patch:

  • The player’s backwards jumping momentum is the same as their forward jumping momentum.
  • The player suffers no horizontal knockback.
  • The timer is permanently frozen.
  • A few new item placements are provided. For example, stage 3 was the only level in the original game not to contain the Jump & Slash technique, so it is added to 3-2.


  • never-obsolete for the NinJax editor.
  • Displaced Gamers for the code breakdown.
  • Maël Hörz for HxD.

ROM / ISO Information:

  • Database match: Ninja Gaiden (USA)
  • Database: No-Intro: Nintendo Entertainment System (v. 20210216-231042)
  • File SHA-1: CA513F841D75EFEB33BB8099FB02BEEB39F6BB9C
  • File CRC32: 11F953F6
  • ROM SHA-1: 15F245161179AB1959B7DC20E82ADD024D23AA3D
  • ROM CRC32: 7C4A72D8



RHDN Hack ImageRHDN Hack ImageRHDN Hack ImageRHDN Hack Image


ContributorType of contributionListed credit
never-obsoleteOriginal HackingNinJax creator
Displaced GamersOriginal WorkCode breakdown

User Review Information

A little better but still not perfect

Reviewed By: Insane Mame Gamer (IMG) on 26 May 2023

Ninja Gaiden is a fairly popular NES title that some people really like, and one I particularly enjoyed too, that is, up until a certain point. But the problem with the game isn’t early on, it lies in world 6 and onward and that is only if you can make it there. Because come on, let’s face it now, the 5th boss is just barely beatable. The main problem with the later stages is they have terrible enemy placement for starters and the levels contain far too many enemies in certain areas which makes advancing exceedingly difficult and needlessly frustrating for even the most seasoned veteran, let alone a novice or an average player. Anyone claiming to beat the game on just one single life or continue for that matter I would definitely call out and demand they do it in front of me because the chances of winning a lottery are probably better than accomplishing that.

This hack balances the difficulty in the game quite a bit, making it less frustrating and an almost enjoyable experience. However, your chances of dying at least a couple of times against the 5th boss are still pretty high and against the final boss a plethora of times is even higher. And thus my conclusion since no one really likes dying a plethora of times nor being forced to repeat things again and again, is to reduce the number of hits it takes to destroy the 5th and 6th bosses by approximately 20-25% and the end result will still be a challenging game as well as a more balanced game with less stress and aggravation that doesn’t require any save states at all.

Version 1.0 Recommended - Yes

User Reviews
A little better but still not perfectInsane Mame Gamer (IMG)26 May 20231.0Yes
Restoration is not just recommended, but necessary.BlazeHeatnix19 Jul 20221.0Yes
I HATE this game, but like this hack!Naniyue09 May 20211.0Yes
Places the difficulty at a more casual settingbrownjacket30 Mar 20211.0Yes