Ninja Gaiden 3 missed the mark on a lot of the elements veterans expected from the series. Complaints include the game's notorious difficulty being diminished, compromised AI and -- maybe, worst of all -- that it's boring.
- Game Informer (60/100): "Ninja Gaiden 3 is not a complete train wreck, but it does suffer from a multitude of problems. The action can be fast-paced and engaging at times, but many design decisions significantly bring down the experience. Dumbed-down A.I., a limited arsenal, the series' notoriously difficult camera, no inventory/currency system, and an incoherent story combine to make this the most disappointing title in the series."
- Gamespot (55/100): "It does all the hard labor so that you don't have to. This forgettable action game may feed your bloodthirst, but the series' sharp edge has been dulled by Team Ninja's attempt to bring the master to the masses."
- Games Radar (30/100): "Ninja Gaiden 3 has completely missed the point of everything that made the series great. Challenging combat, weapon variety, engaging enemies and the series' legendary difficulty have all been cut out in favor of a bland story, flashy finish moves, screen nukes, and button mashing. If you found Ninja Gaiden's difficulty to be a barrier to entry, this game's accessibility won't make it a more attractive option. If anything, it'll leave newcomers wondering what all the fuss was about."
- IGN (30/100): "Ninja Gaiden 3 is a gash on the face of the franchise and one of the worst games the action genre has yet suffered. It has no consideration for its fans' wants or what a new audience may have enjoyed. It's a nightmare that's as easy as it is uninteresting, and it abandons what used to work for awful new ideas that don't work together. Under no circumstance should you ever waste your time on this self-indulgent and abysmal wreck. "