Difference between revisions of "Shinobi"

From Sega Retro

Line 151: Line 151:
===Level Select===
There are three ways to access the stage select, both on the title screen:
*Hold Down and press 1 or 2.
*Press Down, Down, Left, Right, Up, Up, and then 1 or 2.
*Press and hold 1 when Shinobi appears completely on the screen
After entering either code, select which stage to start at by pressing Up or Down and then 1 or 2 to confirm.
===Sound Test===
Press Up and 1 on the title screen for the sound test.

Revision as of 10:17, 16 February 2019

For the home computer versions, see Shinobi (home computers).
For the PlayStation 2 game, see Shinobi (2002).


Shinobi Title.png
System(s): Sega System 16, Sega Master System, NES, TurboGrafx-16, Virtual Console, Xbox Live Arcade
Publisher: Sega,
Nintendo Entertainment System
Peripherals supported:
Sega Master System
FM Sound Unit
Genre: Action

Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Nintendo Entertainment System
1989 $? ?
PC Engine
1989-12-08 ¥? ?
Arcade (System 16)
¥? ?
Arcade (System 16)
$? ?

Sega Master System
¥5,500 G-1353
Sega Master System
$44.95[2] 7009
Sega Master System
£24.95[3][4] MK-7009-50
Sega Master System
?F MK-7009-50
Sega Master System
DM ? MK-7009-50
Sega Master System
?Ptas MK-7009-50
Sega Master System
R$? 026090
Sega Master System
₩? GB-2353

Wii Virtual Console
Wii Virtual Console
ESRB: Everyone 10+
Wii Virtual Console

Shinobi (忍) is a Sega System 16 arcade game developed by Sega. It follows the journey of a ninja called Joe Musashi who must free children from his clan from the evil Zeed organisation.



A dangerous group of evil criminals has taken people and are holding them as hostages. Musashi, a master of Ninjutsu and other martial arts, fights single handedly in the opponent's territory on a mission to rescue the hostages and wipe out the band of villains.


Shinobi is a side scrolling action and platforming game. Musashi can throw projectiles and engage close combat with button 1. Button 2 allows musashi to jump. Pressing up and then pressing button 1 will unleash the ninja magic that will kill or damage all enemies in the screen. Pressing up/down then pressing button 2 will make Musashi to jump up or down from platforms. Each chapter has 4 levels (first chapter has 3) and bosses can be encountered in the 4th levels.

Similar to the Shadow Dancer, players will take part in rail shooting style bonus rounds between chapters. Completing these levels will award the player with ninja magic.

Master System Version

Master System version has some different gameplay elements not seen in other versions. Most important new feature is that Musashi has a life bar. Other differences from the arcade version are the handful of new power-ups.

Projectile weapons

  • Shuriken Tempo Up : Musashi can fire more shurikens instead for waiting the first one to disappear.
  • Throwing Knives: Move faster than shurikens
  • Hand Grenades: Powerful but short ranged. If thrown while crouching it will roll on the ground.
  • Handgun: Most powerful weapon. Can kill all regular enemies with a single shot.

Melee Weapons

  • Punch / Kick: Default melee attacks
  • Sword: Same damage as above but faster attack animation
  • Nunchaku: Powerful
  • Manriki-Kusari (Mispronounced as Manrikugari Chain in the Master System Manual): Powerful and longer reach.


Unlike the arcade version, Master System version of the Shinobi has 6 different magic with somewhat different effects. For some reason, developers of the Master System version made magic use more difficult in this version: Players must first eliminate 10 regular enemies to be able to use ninja magic. Pressing and holding button 2 then pressing button 1 will unleash the ninja magic. Since there are no regular enemies in the boss sections (Flying Ninjas in the Black Turtle boss battle don't count either) ninja magic cannot be used in the boss battles.

  • Metal Binding (Ropes): Paralyzes all enemies on the screen.
  • Flying Squirrel (Cloth): Musashi can fly for a short amount of time. D-Pad is used to move around.
  • Eight Hands (Human symbol): Kills all enemies on the screen.
  • Lightning: Kills all enemies on the screen.
  • Tornado: Kills all enemies on the screen.
  • Invincibility (Silhouette): Musashi will be completely immune to enemy attacks until level is over. He can only be killed if he falls to pitfalls.

Other Power-Ups

  • Life Recover: Fully recovers Musashi's health
  • Life Meter Max: Increases Musashi's health limit
  • Bonus Round: You may enter bonus round after defeating the boss
  • Bonus Points: Get 10000 points


Notavailable.svg Mission 1: Slums
Fight through the slums of a major metropolis. Protect yourselves from knife wielding punks and armed thugs. Don't get distracted by Marilyn Monroe's posters and be on the look out for impostors who are posing as a certain wall-crawler(TM). At the end of the chapter, you will be facing Ken-Oh, (no, not THAT Ken-Oh from that cult manga filled with muscular dudes) a three meter behemoth of a man who will attack you with guided fire balls.
Notavailable.svg Mission 2: Harbor
Fight through the shipyards and enter an ominous looking freighter with blood red walls. Take down frogmen who will try to hinder your progress as you pass through the pier. At the end of the level you will be facing the Black Turtle, a heavily armed transport helicopter who will swarm you with its full complement of Flying Ninjas.
Notavailable.svg Mission 3: Weapons Factory
Deep within the mountain range, you will be infiltrating the factory which supplies the armies of the Ring of Five with state of the art weapons. Eliminate rocket launcher armed brutes and vicious Green Ninjas. At the end of the level you will be facing quite possibly one of the most cheapest bosses in the video game history: Mandara. Time your shots carefully so you can hit both statues at the same time with each jump. The electrical discharge in the back will kill you with single touch so be careful. After all statues are taken down, engage the floating head.
Notavailable.svg Mission 4: Outpost
Another mountain range with lots of pitfalls and enemies at the every corner. Flying Squirrel magic will be a big help here. Engage quasimodo look alikes who will skip around and finally face Lobster, a gigantic, heavily armored Samurai warrior who can only be hurt when he lowers his sword from his face.
Notavailable.svg Mission 5: Enemy Base
Victory is at hand. Survive endless waves of enemies as you pass through the entrance. Move slowly during the bamboo forest if you don't want to be swarmed with ninjas who will swoop down on you like meteors. Inside the Masked Ninja's castle, you will be facing aggressive and relentless buddhist monks who will chase you down with their staffs. At the end of the level Masked Ninja will be ready to fight you to death.

In the first form, he will jump around while protected by a magic shield. His shield will disappear momentarily when he lands. Hit him hen. In his second from he will turn into a tornado and attack you with wind slashes. Get in close and hit him with your melee weapons. In third form, he will make series of long jumps. Time you attacks when he lands. In the final form, he will runs towards you in full speed and attack. Jump to evade his attack and then hit hit back.


Level Select

There are three ways to access the stage select, both on the title screen:

  • Hold Down and press 1 or 2.
  • Press Down, Down, Left, Right, Up, Up, and then 1 or 2.
  • Press and hold 1 when Shinobi appears completely on the screen

After entering either code, select which stage to start at by pressing Up or Down and then 1 or 2 to confirm.

Sound Test

Press Up and 1 on the title screen for the sound test.


Main article: Shinobi/Achievements.



As well as being released in arcades, the game was brought to the Sega Master System in 1988. It was also brought to the Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Commodore 64, DOS computers, MSX, NES, TurboGrafx-16, and ZX Spectrum. More recently the arcade version has been released on the Xbox Live Arcade and Virtual Console services for the Xbox 360 and Wii consoles respectively.

A number of sequels followed, the first two being developed together and released in 1989: Shadow Dancer for the arcade, and The Revenge of Shinobi for the Sega Mega Drive (and later the Mega-Tech).

Production credits

Arcade version

  • Staff: Sugachan 26, Wagamama Kenchi, Topi, Gyofunori, Hanachan, Super Haggar, Fanta Jijii, Yamiagari, Shinjuku Otoko
  • Special Thanks: Pachinker Uke, Ponchan 25

Magazine articles

Main article: Shinobi/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

Shinobi Arcade JP Flyer.jpg

System 16 JP flyer

Shinobi System16 EU Flyer SCKit.jpg

System 16 EU flyer (Super conversion kit)

Tengen NES US PrintAdvert.jpg

NES US print advert

Physical scans

System 16 version

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
80 №54, p103
Based on
1 review

System 16, US
Shinobi System16 US Marquee.jpg
Shinobi System 16 US Manual.pdf
System 16, JP
Shinobi System16 JP InstructionCard.jpg

Master System version

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
67 №1988-11, p85[16]
87 №1, p70[17]
87 №4, p106[18]
87 №1, p62[19]
80 №84, p119[20]
82 [4]
88 №7, p59
87 №1, p136[21]
100 №23, p59
100 №46, p101[22]
89 №6, p28[23]
81 №13, p25
Sega Master System
Based on
12 reviews

Master System, US
Shinobi SMS US cover.jpg
Shinobi sms us cart.jpg
Shinobi sms us manual.pdf
Master System, EU
Shinobi SMS EU cover.jpg
Shinobi SMS EU Cart Top.jpg
Shinobi SMS EU Cart Back.jpgShinobi SMS EU Cart Front.jpg
Master System, EU
"No Limits" variant
Shinobi SMS EU nolimits cover.jpg
Master System, EU
® variant
Shinobi SMS EU R cover.jpg
Shinobi SMS EU R cart.jpg
Master System, EU
8 Languages variant
Shinobi SMS EU 8lang cover.jpg
Master System, JP
Shinobi SMS JP cover.jpg
Shinobi sms jp cart.jpg
Master System, AU
Shinobi SMS AU Cover.jpg
Shinobi SMS AU Cart.jpg
Vacuum-Formed Clamshell Case SMS AU Inside.jpg
Master System, BR (cardboard)
Shinobi SMS BR cover.jpg
Shinobi SMS BR Cart.jpg
Shinobi SMS BR Manual.pdf
Master System, BR
Shinobi SMS BR Box(Plastic White).jpg
Master System, BR (re-release)
Shinobi SMS BR Box Alt Back.jpgNospine.pngShinobi SMS BR Box Alt.jpg
Shinobi SMS BR Box Alt Cart.jpg
Master System, KR
Shinobi SMS KR backcover.jpgNospine.pngShinobi SMS KR cover.jpg
Shinobi SMS KR Cart Top.jpg
Shinobi SMS KR Cart Back.jpgShinobi SMS KR Cart.jpg
Master System, KR (Alt)
Shinobi SMS KR Alt cover.jpg
Master System, SE

Master System, Benelux Union
Shinobi SMS BX front.jpg

NES version

Shinobi NES US Box Back.jpgNospine.pngShinobi NES US cover.jpg
Shinobi NES US Cart.jpg

PC Engine version

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
81 №100, p96[24]
88 [25]
78 №5/90, p120[26]
85 №76, p82[27]
90 №45, p28/29[28]
PC Engine
Based on
5 reviews

PC Engine, JP
Shinobi PCE HuCard JP Back.jpgShinobi PCE HuCard JP Spine.jpgShinobi PCE JP Box Front.jpg
Shinobi PCE HuCard JP Card Back.jpgShinobi PCE JP Card.jpg
Shinobi PCE HuCard JP Manual.pdf

Mega-Tech version


Shinobi MT Cart.jpg

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Master System
MD5 3DD2C025185E19AC9BF1ED16B695C629
SHA-1 7C0778C055DC9C2B0AAE1D166DBDB4734E55B9D1
256kB Cartridge (EU/US)
Sega Master System
MD5 789B285290688CBD0A786F888F9DADA1
SHA-1 26070DEAA2D3C170D31AC395A50231204250BDF3
256kB Cartridge (JP)
Nintendo Entertainment System
MD5 3BC8F6E9E606E28F40655531CB5CC5EE
SHA-1 66662F77437A69A9BA0470F877754E7946C157D7
256kB Cartridge (US)
PC Engine
CRC32 BC655CF3
MD5 1659D9FA2ED7628D342FD7C7FBE6D439
SHA-1 C219F8477DC2B34B53C25A419332595835D1F5EC
384kB Card (JP)

External links

  • Sega of Japan Virtual Console pages: Arcade
  • Nintendo catalogue pages: US
  • Shinobi on Xbox Marketplace: JP, US, UK, AU


  2. File:VG&CE US 05.pdf, page 30
  3. File:ACE UK 16.pdf, page 166
  4. 4.0 4.1 The Games Machine, "January 1989" (UK; 1988-12-15), page 58
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Xbox LIVE Marketplace (de-DE; Shinobi/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d802584109a4) (archived: 2013-08-13 02:55)
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Xbox LIVE Marketplace (en-US; Shinobi/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d802584109a4) (archived: 2010-11-01 18:24)
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Xbox LIVE Marketplace (en-GB; Shinobi/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d802584109a4) (archived: 2011-01-01 03:42)
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Xbox LIVE Marketplace (ja-JP; SHINOBI-忍/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d802584109a4) (archived: 2011-11-14 05:22)
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Xbox LIVE Marketplace (en-AU; Shinobi/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d802584109a4) (archived: 2011-11-12 01:45)
  10. (archived: 2018-03-05 23:33)
  11. (archived: 2009-07-18 15:08)
  12. 12.0 12.1 (archived: 2010-11-22 22:47)
  13. 13.0 13.1 (archived: 2017-09-15 13:08)
  16. File:ASM DE 1988-11.pdf, page 68
  17. File:CompleteGuideToConsoles_UK_01.pdf, page 70
  18. File:CGtC UK 04.pdf, page 106
  19. File:TheCompleteGuideToSega UK.pdf, page 62
  20. File:CVG UK 084.pdf, page 119
  21. File:MeanMachinesSega01UK.pdf, page 136
  22. File:SegaPower UK 46.pdf, page 101
  23. File:SegaPro UK 06.pdf, page 28
  24. File:CVG UK 100.pdf, page 96
  25. The Games Machine, "March 1990" (UK; 1990-02-08), page 52
  26. File:PowerPlay DE 026.pdf, page 120
  27. File:Tilt FR 076.pdf, page 82
  28. File:Zzap IT 45.pdf, page 28

Shinobi Title.png

Main page | Comparisons | Maps | Achievements | Hidden content | Magazine articles

Games in the Shinobi Series
Shinobi (1987) | Shadow Dancer (1989)
Sega Master System
Shinobi (1988) | The Cyber Shinobi (1990) | Shadow Dancer (1991)
Commodore Amiga
Atari ST
Amstrad CPC
Commodore 64
ZX Spectrum
IBM PC compatibles
Shinobi (1989)
Sega Mega Drive
The Revenge of Shinobi (1989) | Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi (1990) | Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master (1993)
Sega Game Gear
The GG Shinobi (1991) | The GG Shinobi II: The Silent Fury (1992)
Sega Saturn
Shinobi Legions (1995)
Game Boy Advance
The Revenge of Shinobi (2002)
Sony PlayStation 2
Shinobi (2002) | Nightshade (2003)
Nintendo 3DS
Shinobi 3D (2011) | 3D Shinobi III (2013)
Nintendo Switch
Sega Ages Shinobi (TBD)
Shinobi related media
The Super Shinobi & Works (1989) | Shinobi Original Soundtrack (2002) | Legend of Joe Musashi: Shinobi Music Collection (2009) | Shinobi 3D Original Soundtrack (2012) | Kunoichi Original Soundtrack (2014) | Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master (2015) | The Revenge of Shinobi (2016)
Shinobi: The Fear Pavilion (1994) | Shin Shinobi Den Hisshou Kouryaku Hou (199x) | Shinobi: The Rise of Hotsuma (2002) | Shinobi The Complete Guide (2002) | Prima's Official Strategy Guide: Shinobi (2002) | Kunoichi Koushiki Guide Book (2003) | Kunoichi Perfect Guide (2004)