Rising Star Games and Bitmap Bureau are teaming up once again to release a new local multiplayer beat-’em-up: Ninja Shodown. The two previously released 88 Heroes, a retro-style 2D platformer.
Bitmap Bureau is a three-person indie studio that has played with the ninja motif before. Its design director, Mike Tucker, founded Megadev, which developed the popular Super House of Dead Ninjas in 2013.
Rising Star operates in both the U.S. and Europe and has published such games as No More Heroes for the Wii and Harvest Moon: Tale of Two Towns for the 3DS in Europe, and Cooking Mama: Sweet Shop for the 3DS in the U.S. Though Rising Star has in the past handled publishing duties for only specific platforms for some games (it published Deadly Premonition for the PC, for instance, while another handled the console release), it will release Ninja Shodown on PS4 and Xbox One as well as for PC.
There will be several modes available in Ninja Shodown, including both cooperative and competitive local multiplayer for up to four players. Players will be able to customize their character with various types of weapons and battle their way through five different areas. Bitmap will release it later this year.
In recent years, indie games featuring local co-op has found success. According to SteamSpy, nearly 6 million people bought Don’t Starve Together, released in April 2016, surpassing the 4 million who bought the original single-player Don’t Starve. TowerFall Ascension also did well when ported to PS4, a fact that developer Matt Thorson attributes to its appeal as a “couch-friendly” game with local multiplayer gameplay.