Ninja Gaiden Black isn't being remastered because the code is in 'pieces'

Ninja Gaiden Black
(Image credit: Team Ninja)

The Ninja Gaiden series is hitting PC for the first time this June with the Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection, containing Ninja Gaiden Sigma, Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2, and Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge. But Ninja Gaiden Black, regarded by many as the best in the series, is a notable absence.

In an interview with Polygon, producer Fumihiko Yasuda revealed that one of the reasons Ninja Gaiden Black isn't anywhere to be seen is because a lot of the earlier Ninja Gaiden games weren't preserved, and have since been lost to the ether.

"The data we have left from Ninja Gaiden Black and Ninja Gaiden 2 are in various pieces to the point that we were unable to salvage them," Yasuda said. "However, when we worked on Sigma and Sigma 2, we went and collected as much of that data as possible and organised it. And since we could utilise this data, that's why we chose the Sigma games."

Yasuda also essentially confirmed that the remastered Sigma 2 will stick with its purple smoke 'blood' instead of returning to the original Ninja Gaiden 2's anarchic limbs-a-flyin' bloodfest, saying "the content will be similar to the original Sigma, Sigma 2, and Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge games."

The Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection hits Steam on June 10. The collection will run at 60 fps and in 4K on PC, but sadly will see the removal of online mode almost entirely. Tag Missions are returning, but in a single-player format with "some of the unreasonably difficult parts" adjusted to compensate.

Mollie Taylor
Features Producer

Mollie spent her early childhood deeply invested in games like Killer Instinct, Toontown and Audition Online, which continue to form the pillars of her personality today. She joined PC Gamer in 2020 as a news writer and now lends her expertise to write a wealth of features, guides and reviews with a dash of chaos. She can often be found causing mischief in Final Fantasy 14, using those experiences to write neat things about her favourite MMO. When she's not staring at her bunny girl she can be found sweating out rhythm games, pretending to be good at fighting games or spending far too much money at her local arcade.