Waypoint 101 — Mark of the Ninja


Hello, Waypointeers! The next game to feature on Waypoint 101 will be Klei Entertainment’s Mark of the Ninja. Originally an Xbox Live Arcade game released in September 2012, you play as a nameless ninja branded with mystical tattoos, who… well, he sneaks real good. That’s the main hook of this game.

This Waypoint 101 will have one part.

Mark of the Ninja is available on PC, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.

We’re consolidating the discussion around this game and Waypoint 101 into this thread. Feel free to share your updates, thoughts, and posts as we go. We hope that, by having folks talk about the game as they play it, we can all have an enriched experience.

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Questions & Answers
Standard Questions

Q: What is Waypoint 101?

A: To quote Austin Walker, ‘Waypoint 101 is our special book-club style, roundtable series, where both staff and community play through and chat about a game that either left an imprint on us and the industry or else was unfortunately overlooked. Click here to check out previous entries in the series!’.

Q: Do I have to play the whole game at once?

A: Not necessarily – you can feel free to give us your progress reports as you go.

Q: I played this game before. Can I talk about that thing at the end? Y’know, the thing?

A: As we’re likely not to have multiple episodes about this game, you can, but I would encourage folks to let the discussion germinate and flow naturally. If you really want to talk about the thing, please tag your spoilers accordingly.


I just wanted to shout out a few folks who recommended Mark of the Ninja in the Waypoint 101 recommendation thread!

@M_o, @slimesiren, and @golden from the most recent solicitation for games (and @Foxtrot for recommending it way back in July 2017!).


Hellllll yeah! Mark of the Ninja is one of the best stealth games of all time, probably the best 2D stealth game ever. I’ll have to consider returning to it!


I also really appreciate reason #3; not that I’m shooter-averse, but there have been a lot of them as Austin notes. I hope there will be more games that fall in the mold of #5 in the future too!


Oh snap! I just realized that I got the remaster for free by owning the 360 version. And there’s new achievements! Def gonna be following along with this 101.

Really excited I can finally follow along with one of these! And by that I mean that they picked a game I can play on my Switch!

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I had been thinking of giving this another shot, and have a friend who’d really like to play it as well. Great excuse to go through it again and be part of (i.e. mostly read) some discussion with good people on it!

I DID NOT like this game when it first game out. I have a lot of trouble with 2D games generally because they’re often very precise in comparison to 3D games and I just can’t visualise space in 2D in the same way. In an amazing year for high-profile indies, this was one that I just didn’t get. I’m excited to give it another chance.

In a different thread way back I remember rather smugly referring to this as the only good, truly fun stealth game ever made. I realize now this may have come across as very dismissive, and upon further reflection and re-evaluation I just want to say that I still stand by that 100%


I really really like this game. I bought a PS3 controller and spent way too long getting it to work properly on my MacBook, in order to play Mark of the Ninja. So I’m really looking forward to this. Now that I have an Xbox maybe I’ll even re-play it.

ooh i love stealth mechanics so i should definitely check this one out. probably won’t get to it in time for the 101 because i’m busy/still playing hollow knight but i’ll have to remember it.

Shout outs to the first recommendation for 101 that is available on Nintendo Switch. This would be my second playthrough of Mark of Ninja, and it have been more than 5 years since I first beat this game. As the time of this post, I have cleared the first of 3 “Boss fights”(Which are more like set piece puzzles.). Played the game along side Hitman 2 feels particularly surreal, given their similarities. Like rewarding players with more score points when stealth manoeuvre is pulled properly. Not to mention “Silent Assassin”, though this one is significantly harder to get in Hitman while one just have to get what is essentially QTE right in Mark of Ninja.

This post is not necessarily about the game itself. In this game, player plays as a tattooed Ninja of the Hisomu Ninja clan. And this post is mainly about this clan name.

In this writer’s(Who majored in Japanese at college, had a bachelor degree on it and cleared N1 test.) humble opinion(After some research), “Hisomu” came from the Japanese verb 「潜む」, mainly means doing something using stealth, quiet and careful in order to be unnoticeable, like a Ninja one might add. The other meaning of “hisomu” in the dictionary is closer to the adjectives “insidious”(If you want to be describe unseen flaw.) or “potential”(If you sense something good remain unseen.). It would have stopped here if I’m a native speaker of Japanese or English, but I’m Chinese, so here is where the plot thickens.

The kanji「潜」read as “hiso” here has a counterpart in Chines language. The Chinese character “潜”, read as “qian” plays a big part in the stealth action video game genre. Not only does it mean “stealth” within certain context on it own, it also appears as the first character in the official translation of THE stealth action series, Metal Gear Solid(Well, I certainly have enough beef with it to say that my feeling is mixed on this one. But it’s beloved by millions and Metal Gear did start the genre). 《潜龙谍影》(qian long die ying), roughly translated back into English as “Shadow of Hidden Dragons and Spies”, was printed on the PC version of Metal Gear Solid 2 Substance when it was released in China with bad localization. Then a magazine titled 《游戏机实用技术》(you xi ji shi yong ji shu. They call themselves “Ultra Console Game”. And before you ask, yes, they were already around during the so-called decade long console ban in Mainland, China.) just ran with it. It would sound like the title of a generic espionage thriller to any Chinese who has seen enough spy movies. Especially the “谍影”, “spies’ shadow” part, whenever I saw it I just went “Oh, those fuckers ain’t ever trying”. One of the example would be the Borune series, “谍影重重” (die ying chong chong, roughly means “Layers of Spies’ Shadow”)1 to 5 would mean the movies titled the Bourne Identity, the Bourne Supremacy, the Bourne Ultimatum, the Bourne Legacy and Jason Bourne respectively. On the other hand “潜龙”, “hidden dragons” is the relatively more interesting part. It can be referred to snakes in Chinese and given that playable protagonists in those game all have been code named “Snake” at one point or another, this is a proper translation from that perspective.
Looks like I made the first motherload post in the tread. Thank you for reading everything above.


Yay, a Waypoint 101 I can finally participate in! I actually finished it for the first time last month because of the remaster on the Switch. It was fun but I don’t know if it entirely clicked. That’s happened to me with most Klei games; I always like them in theory, but they rarely suck me in. The only game of theirs I’ve really loved was Invisible, Inc., but I fell hard for that one.

Finally getting a Switch this week, looks like that’s my first game confirmed

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Ermagerd I’m thrilled about this. I played MoTN back when it came out for XBOX Live Arcade and I have been looking for an excuse to pop back in.

Great call.

Personally speaking, Mark of the Ninja was my second or third PC game ever – it came well recommended & caught my attention. Even at the time that I played it, it felt the game dragging in the third act. I might well pick up the Switch version and give it for this ring-in-the-year Waypoint 101 – let’s hope I get to the end…

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I remember picking this up near release and only playing 45 minutes of it. I’ve never been able to get into any Klei game but I’ll give it another go I suppose.

Ah man, so good!! I just picked it up on Switch right when it came out, and experiencing all my love for it all over again was such a joy. I also have a new appreciation for its shortness, now that I’m an adult with a job.

Looking forward to y’all’s conversation!!

I never finished this game, or made it very far into it from what I can remember. Fortunately, I just hooked my 360 back up and am very excited to play along. Hopefully this will get me to stick with it and play through the entire game.

The steam upgrade is $5.12 CDN for those that already own it but I am tempted to buy it on Switch.