[[caption-width-right:350:(R-L) Hiro, Suzume, and Futo [[note]]They're not really particularly "mini."[[/note]]]]
An [[ActionAdventure Action Adventure-y]], [[PlatformGame Platformer-y]] game from Creator/{{Eidos}}, the same company behind the ''Franchise/TombRaider'' franchise (and developed by Creator/IOInteractive, makers of ''VideoGame/{{Hitman}}''). While the cute title and ads set the game up as an AffectionateParody of the "swords and black suits" genre, [[NeverTrustATrailer the game is actually a straightforward Japanese fantasy.]] [[LighterAndSofter For kids.]]

Three hundred years ago, a dark force rose up and attempted to TakeOverTheWorld. Abusing a mystical force known as [[KiAttacks Kuji Magic]], it transformed innocent forest animals into dark soldiers and ravaged the land. The abuse of this force also imbalanced the forces of nature, causing natural disasters. But he was defeated, and his dark magic [[SealedEvilInACan sealed away forever]]. Peace reigned.

Or... what they thought was forever. Natural disasters of unnatural magnitudes are suddenly returning. And what are these mysterious samurai-like soldiers appearing everywhere? The wise old Ninja Master decides to send out his pupils one by one to investigate, and one by one, they vanish. Soon, he is left with only two ninja: promising but untrained Hiro, and clumsy but strong Futo. They are not truly ready for the world, but given the dire straits, they're the only hope the world has. Luckily, although their friends have been taken hostage, they're unharmed, and can be rescued. And they'll have to be if the balance of nature is to be restored!

The game combines action-adventure combat and exploration with platforming, with a large number of weapons, spells, and items to use, as well as six different ninja characters, each with different abilities. And despite what you might think, [[NonIndicativeName they're all normal-sized, thank you very much.]] Well... except for [[TheBigGuy Futo.]]
!!'''This game provides examples of:'''

* ActionGirl: The roles of Suzume and Kunoichi.
* {{Animorphism}}: Hiro can become animals by possessing them with his Spirit Form. They're not all ''useful,'' but they can at least all find herbs and Jizo Statues.
* AnnoyingArrows: Played with. Enemy arrows aren't very damaging to you, and are easily warded off with your hat or a Flask of Arrow-Shield. Shun's arrows ''are'' as deadly as their real-life counterparts, unless fired in melee combat.
** These become far more annoying later on, where the red Archer Samurai launch rocket arrows at you, which do more damage and knocks you on your back.
* ArrowsOnFire: The blue Archer Samurai can do this, and an ''exploding'' arrow is Shun's special move. However, Red Archer Samurai also have explosive arrows, and they can become quite annoying, as they can effectively juggle you with hits.
* AudibleSharpness: Hiro's sword.
* BadassAdorable: Ninjas.
* BigEater: Futo, even as a baby, was known for his monstrous appetite. Tora is one as well.
* BladeOnAStick: Kunoichi's main weapon, as well as the weapon of choice of the Samurai Spearman.
* BullfightBoss: The first boss, Lumbering Fool.
* BilingualBonus: The spell incantations are in Japanese, and if left alone, some of the characters will babble Japanese if [[IdleAnimation left idle]], such as Suzume saying, "Where are they...?"
* CharacterSelectForcing: Given that Hiro is the only magic-user, it seems reasonable that you'd rely on him a lot. But why is he the only character who can ''fish?''
** The first fishing rod of the game ''did'' belonged to Hiro. However, this trope is more blatant in boss battles, where you use ONLY Hiro.
* CoolBoat: Your ''hat'' actually becomes one, and is easier than swimming.
* DoorstopBaby: Nearly all of the ninja, except for Hiro, were left by the entrance to Ninja Mountain and raised by the Ninja Master.
* DropTheHammer: Futo. According to his backstory, it was the only weapon that seemed to suit his fighting style and body type.
* {{Fartillery}}: The second boss, Windy Pants.
* FighterMageThief: The first three ninja characters are this: Futo's the Fighter, Hiro's the Mage, and Suzume is the Thief. (Although she doesn't use ranged attacks, she does rely on speed and trickery.)
* FishingMinigame
* FiveManBand:
** TheLeader - Hiro
** TheLancer - Tora
** TheChick - Suzume/Kunoichi
** TheSmartGuy - Shun
** The BigGuy - Futo
* GratuitousJapanese: Though, given the setting, maybe not ''that'' gratuitous.
* HeroicMime: The characters do talk from time to time (e.g. cast a spell or Suzume's idle chatter), but not during cutscenes.
* HyperactiveMetabolism
* ImprobableAimingSkills: Shun.
* ImprobableWeaponUser: Fear Suzume, and the beatdown she hands out with her mighty... flute? Subverted. [[spoiler: It's really [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tz431i5GFys a blowgun]]. [[WhatCouldHaveBeen Now if only she could do that in-game...]]]]
* InevitableWaterfall: One level ends in you riding your hat-boat over one. Which would be fine (SoftWater is in full effect here), but its appearance is heralded by PsychoStrings.
* InstrumentOfMurder
* ItemCrafting: Herbs can be combined to make potions of various sorts.
* KiAttacks: Kuji magic utiliizes Ki energy.
* KidHero: The "Mini" part of "Mini Ninjas."
* KungFuProofMook: Pike-using Samurai are nearly impossible to melee attack without stunning them first, and go down better to long-range weapons, anyway. Note that they are not TOTALLY Kung fu proof, just not recommended to fight them with a ninja such as Hiro or Tora.
* LawOfChromaticSuperiority: Later on, you'll find Red Samurai, which have better health and more powerful attacks.
* MagicMusic: Suzume's flute can paralyze enemies with its song, leaving them open to a OneHitKill.
* MeaningfulName: The main character's name is Hiro.
** There's also the tiger-like [[BilingualBonus Tora.]]
* NiceHat: It's your shield against normal arrows, essentially. And it doubles as your CoolBoat.
* {{Ninja}}: ...We'll let you figure this one out.
* NoArcInArchery: Averted with both Shun's arrows and the enemies'.
* OneHundredPercentCompletion: When you finish a level, you're ranked on your completion of it, including herbs collected and money found. But while things like Jizo statues and spells stay collected, herbs and money respawn. Thank goodness, or else there'd be a lot of InventoryManagementPuzzle going on.
* OohMeAccentsSlipping: The Tengu and the Ninja Master speak with a sort of "kung-fu movie" accent, but they occasionally lapse into a more genuine Japanese accent.
* PartyInMyPocket: I am a little girl with a wooden flute. [[SmokeOut Poof!]] Now I am a giant with a barrel on a stick!
* PressXToNotDie: Quick Time Events figure heavily in all of the boss fights except for [[BigBad the final one]].
* SealedGoodInACan: Kuji magic, which was sealed in shrines.
* StockSoundEffects: The same sound effect used to note you have found something shiny is here used for when you have found fruit-bearing trees or bushes.
* SpeakingSimlish: The samurai babble in unintelligible English/Japanese/Nonsensese. Everyone else speaks perfect English or Japanese.
* {{Tengu}}: Your primary allies are these, though here, they literally look like [[LionsAndTigersAndHumansOhMy giant anthropomorphic crows.]] This is actually [[ShownTheirWork mythologically accurate,]] as mythological tengu were often said to protect deep forests and mountains, and were said to have instructed ninja.
* VariableMix: The game mostly uses ambient flute and drum/woodblock music, but certain areas (such as temples) and set pieces make the music evolve.
* {{Wutai}}: Pretty much the whole setting, give or take, uh... the entire game.