The Messenger by Sabotage Studio is coming to the PlayStation 4 next week. The Ninja Gaiden-inspired Metroidvania is already a hit on the Switch and the PC, and now it's time for Sony's console to feel its blade.
News about The Messenger coming to the PlayStation 4 hit the official PlayStation blog earlier this morning. Come March 19, Sony loyalists will be able to jump, slash, and explore their way through an adventure that looks very familiar at first glance, but offers an in-depth challenge for Ninja Gaiden fans (and anyone else who likes their 2D action games to get a little more involved).
"Ever since The Messenger was announced, fans have been asking us to bring it to PS4," writes Sabotage co-founder Martin Brouard. "Well, the wait is over, and we are very excited that the PlayStation family can carry the scroll and do the thing with a DualShock controller starting March 19."
What's more, free DLC is coming to The Messenger this summer. The expansion bears the wonderfully '90s name "Picnic Panic." Brouard says, "This resolutely silly adventure will test your skills even more as our ninja heads to Voodkin Island in order to thwart Barma’thazël’s wicked plan." It'll be like taking a tropical vacation, but with more sharp things on your person.
Kat reviewed The Messenger when it first came out last August. She awarded it a 5 out of 5 and called it the best retro tribute since Shovel Knight (which remains the gold standard for 2D action games with deep roots in the retro platformers of the NES era).
The Messenger boasts one truly unique quirk, however: You occasionally come across "time bubbles" that instantly flip the game from 8 to 16 bits. That means an immediate upgrade for graphics and sound. Certain objects clear out of your way as well, and some bosses even change form. All told, the whole experience is Ninja-riffic.