THE LEGEND OF KAGE / Taito / NES
I can't imagine why Taito was in such a rush to get this game out on the Virtual Console, except for perhaps having some secret desire to sabotage the whole enterprise. This is quite possibly one of the worst games of all time.
You play as this ninja in a pink bathrobe. One button makes you chuck shurikens, another swings your tonfa which can deflect shurikens and kill guys who are near you, and you can jump like super high and climb up trees and stuff. Now, these elements could have made for quite a kickass game. Unfortunately, the graphics are ugly, the enemy ninja all look like paraplegics, the jump is virtually uncontrollable, climbing is really slow and janky, and the hit detection is goofy.
The game opens with some blind woman wandering through the woods, suddenly armless ninja swoops down and grabs her up (using what exactly I am not even going to speculate). Enter our hero, who must ... well I've played through it three times now and I'm still not totally clear on what the objective of the first level is. I mean, eventually this red hermit mage dude comes out and you have to kill him, but as to what exactly triggers his arrival I'm still not sure .... just wandered around and slaughtered ninjers by the hundreds until he randomly decided to show up each time.
Next - some level where there is a river and you have to kill ten ninjas to proceed. Then, what is probably the easiest level in NES history as you jump straight up a few platforms to invade the castle of the evil ninjas. The final level is kind of like the first, except with a definite objective - you run up sets of stairs until you encounter blind chick, and make your daring escape from the castle ... except, once back in the woods, some stupid ass ninja swoops down and grabs her up again and the whole cycle starts over, except now the woods are filled with fireball chucking Ghost Monks that you can't seem to hit.
There was no way I was going through all that shit again, however according to the Video Game Museum there actually *is* some kind of an ending to this game (http://www.vgmuseum.com/end/nes/b/legk.htm), but....apparently the whole cycle just starts over yet again from the beginning after that! If Taito was trying to create a simulation of a horrible nightmare, they did an admirable job of it here.
So ... Kage, yeah, it's terrible. I'm divided as to whether this or Baseball is actually the worst available game on the Virtual Console right now, and I really do not recommend you waste your hard earned money on it.
* Gameplay Video