When a global war nearly decimated humankind, an evil military organization called Oniken takes advantage of the situation to dominate and oppress the few remaining survivors. Even though any resistance to this organization seemed hopeless, a small rebel movement organizes strikes against Oniken.
User reviews:
Very Positive (448 reviews) - 83% of the 448 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Feb 5, 2014

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“It feels like it fell out of the late eighties, except the controls were tightened up during the voyage.”
7/10 – Destructoid

“Oniken is an hard platform game with a retrò feeling inspired by the NES classics. It is a good game which all the retrogamers should try.”
80/100 – http://multiplayer.it/recensioni/105550-oniken-una-lama-a-8-bit.html

“Tough as nails, Oniken brings gamers back to the good old days of platforming, the 8-Bit era. It's not just looks, but the gameplay and overall feel of the game will no doubt fill older gamers with nostalgia.”
5/5 – BitLoaders

About This Game

When a global war nearly decimated humankind, an evil military organization called Oniken takes advantage of the situation to dominate and oppress the few remaining survivors. Even though any resistance to this organization seemed hopeless, a small rebel movement organizes strikes against Oniken. One day, a ninja mercenary named Zaku offers his services to the resistance for unknown reasons. His moves are lethal and now he is the resistance's only hope.

Oniken is an action platform game highly inspired by the 1980's, its games and its movies. You can see this not only in the graphics and sound design, but also in Oniken's story and difficulty.

Don't Worry, You Will Die A Lot Of Times.

Every copy of Oniken comes with digital versions of the game manual and the original soundtrack.


  • Graphics, sounds and difficulty from the 8-bit era
  • Cinematic cutscenes
  • Over 18 boss fights
  • Six missions, three stages each
  • An extra mission after you beat the game
  • Boss rush mode
  • Not difficult enough? Try the new HARDCORE MODE
  • Global Leaderboards
  • Full pixelated violence

Note for Mac/Linux

Mac and Linux version are Wine wrappers. They're not a port but in every machine we could test the game it ran perfectly and without any problem. However if you have a problem with these versions please e-mail us!

We can't get gamepad controls working in the wrappers, but you can use key mapping softwares (like joy2key).

System Requirements

Mac OS X
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: 1.0 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 32MB VRAM Integrated Graphics Card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Dual Core Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 64MB VRAM Dedicated Graphics Card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
    • OS: OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 32MB VRAM Integrated Graphics Card
    • Storage: 250 MB available space
    • OS: OS X 10.9 Mavericks
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 64MB VRAM Dedicated Graphics Card
    • Storage: 400 MB available space
Customer reviews
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Very Positive (448 reviews)
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251 reviews match the filters above ( Very Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 7
Pretty unforgiving, frustrating, satisfying.
Only 1 attack though and the SUper attack.
Enough variety to keep you entertained 'till the end.
Nice art, music.
Worth a buy.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Sometimes you just want to slash people in half and use no more than a couple buttons to do it. Reminiscent of games like Strider, Ninja Gaiden, and Shatterhand, Oniken is a brutal and brutally difficult 8-bit platformer that isn’t for the meek.

Oniken isn’t quite the magical pairing of nostalgia and great game design that Mega Man 9 was, but it comes close to scratching that same itch that few other games have done since. If you love 8-bit games and hate yourself, dying repeatedly within Oniken’s six merciless levels brings its own form of joy that is rare in games these days.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 1
I think the game was inspired by games like ninja gaiden a bit too much , the levels are punishing with pretty much undodgeable attacks unless you got hit once and now know they're comming, the first boss fight is pretty dull, the only way to beat it is to save grenades, have a sword upgrade or damage boost. speaking of damage boosting, i was never really a fan of getting knocked back when i get hit, especially when the thing hitting me can't be attacked (rocks after the first boss, sure you can slice them... when they come to your sword level, but since you can't attack upwards it doesn't really help now does it.). especially when you're platforming over an instakill pit. oh and btw , no checkpoints, if you die at boss you gotta replay the whole stage again.

The only redeeming quality i can say it has is that i like it's artstyle. i might revisit the game in the future, but for now this is my oppinion
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1 of 5 people (20%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 1
Hard gameplay to extend play time, ♥♥♥♥♥♥ controls, no blocking. 3 slammings outta 100.
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1 of 8 people (13%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 4
What would be an appropriate adjective for the era?
How about "Poser"
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
113 of 129 people (88%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 5, 2014
The review blurbs don't lie: This game absolutely feels like it came right out of the late 80's NES but with fine tuned controls. Everything about it screams classic from the NES style color palette that neatly separates foreground from background and makes sure enemies stand out clearly to the hard as balls platforming and combat, to the sparse checkpoints and lives and unforgiving boss battles that can crush you in an instant if you don't learn their patterns.

Gameplay feels like a mix of Strider and Shatterhand with swords and grenades as your primary weapons. A power-up item lets you cast a crescent shaped beam half the length of the screen with your primary attack but fails after you've been hit twice, requiring you to not only master the new attack range to keep enemies at bay but also hone your platforming and dodging skills to maintain your elevated attack power for harder enemies later in the stage.

The Terminator meets Vexille meets any kind of robo apocalypse storyline is pure '80's cheese and it's glorious, especially when a dude called Rico calls you on what looks like an '80's portable TV while you're riding a bright green rocket powered jetski. There's even a villain that feels like a pure throwback to the infamous Cats from Zero Wing.

Despite all the homage to action games of the late '80's, Oniken manages to be its own beast. It doesn't feel especially unique but it doesn't have to as it's a masterfully crafted experience that's equal parts nostalgia trip and exciting. Even with the harsh difficulty I find myself wanting to see what the next screen will be, what the next villain will be, what's the next enemy the game will throw at me and what will it do.

The audio feels ripped right from the era too, a masterfully crafted score of synthetic sounding music that perfectly fits the tone and transports you back to a childhood full of bleeps and bloops and incredible ear-pleasure that you're sure your audio chip is having an ♥♥♥♥♥♥ to produce.

Controls are tight, responsive and the ability to use the dpad or analogue stick makes everything a bit easier (or more authentic depending on how you look at it). Restricting controls to two buttons (attack and jump, with grenade being up+attack) feels like an unnecessary nod to the NES but it's not restricting or annoying. Neither is the game in general - when you die it's almost always your own fault, you own mistake or lack of attention that causes you to fail. That said, enemies are fast and unpredictable (at least the first time you meet them) and you'll get caught off guard by a rushing machine or chucked grenade more than once.

So do I recommend the game? Absolutely. No other game even comes close to the level of authenticity that Oniken achieves and it's obviously a labour of love from the developers who are very talented. The game isn't perfect though, for all the praise I have to give it the flashing backgrounds in some cutscenes are an epileptics worst nightmare that can't be disabled (except by skipping the whole cutscene).

Score: 9/10 robots stabbed in the faceplate.
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61 of 67 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
5.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 16, 2015
There are TWO games on Steam that play and feel like classic NES / SNES games.
Oniken is one of them.

Many side-scrollers and platformers claim to play and / or feel like they're out of the 80's. Like they are from the (S)NES era.
They all lie!
Some of them really do look like NES games. Some of them look like HD NES games. Some of them claim to play like NES games while looking totally "new-age?". None of them really plays nor feels like old-school retro side-scrollers tho.
I'm not saying they're bad games. They mostly aren't. But they don't feel nor play like (S)NES games.

Oniken, however, plays and feels exactly like a classic NES game!

I was sure that Oniken is another one of those pixelated games that is super hard, claims to be "old-school" but doesn't feel or play like an NES classic and once again poor old Mets would be dissapointed.
I still gave it a shot and WOW! Just WOW!
Oniken feels just like it came out from the 80's!

Unlike any other false "old-school" games on Steam, Oniken keeps it simple: You have 2 different attacks (one of them being a pick-up), you can jump...and move back and forth. The game is hard tho. Not Ninja Gaiden hard, but hard. Challenging is the key word here.

Easy to get into, hard to master.

The combat is smooth - Your main weapon is a sword (that looks like a katana) and you can throw grenades as a secondary weapon. Grenades are pick-ups tho and you can run out of them. You can also find secret 1-UPs and some sword power-ups if you get lucky.

After each level you get rewarded with a cutscene that has the quality of Ninja Gaiden.

I managed to finish the entire game in 6h...it's possible to speedrun through the game in 15-30 minutes tho. Just like with classic NES games. Their true lengths were about 15-40 minutes but they took hundreds, if not thousands, of tries to finish.
There are 6 stages and each stage takes you about 2-5 minutes...That is if you know what to expect and you're familiar with the level layout. The first playthrough will take some time. I especially hate level 4 which took me the longest amount of time to beat.

10/10 - Nails every aspect of being a good NES game!

If you're looking for a throwback then this is it. Look no further! Buy Oniken!
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37 of 41 people (90%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
15.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 20, 2015
Sometimes you just want to slash people in half and use no more than a couple buttons to do it. Reminiscent of games like Strider, Ninja Gaiden, and Shatterhand, Oniken is a brutal and brutally difficult 8-bit platformer that isn’t for the meek. Games of its style have been common as of late, but none feel as authentic as Oniken. For better and worse, one could easily mistake Oniken for a lost Nintendo game by Nastume or Tecmo.

Call it indie if you like, but teams of two to three people were commonplace during Nintendo game development. Some did great things within the action-platformer genre, of which Oniken belongs. What we now see as limitations of hardware, they saw as a framework to build within. With 56 colors, a goofy-sounding synth, and four buttons, a few talented designers made games that continue to entertain us many years later. Oniken aspires to be in their company, even if it’s from a different era and on a different platform.

As an outsider, simplicity and difficulty appear to be the two main design philosophies of Oniken. We’ll talk about the former, before my blood starts boiling at the thought of the game’s bosses. Designed with a gamepad in mind, Oniken centers around one mercenary ninja’s ability to jump and slash dystopian future jerks. Zuku, the game’s protagonist, isn’t as fluid and fun to control as Strider Hiryu, but his sword has a nice reach. You can extend that reach by collecting power-ups. However, you can easily lose these upgrades by taking damage. If it isn’t clear by now, Oniken loves to punish the player for making dumb mistakes.

Luckily, Zuku has a couple of extra tricks up his sleeve. In addition to extending attack reach, Zuku can sacrifice his power-up in order to go into berserk mode, where he deals more damage and takes less. Just as the power-ups render deadly enemies harmless, berserk mode can turn some of the game’s most difficult bosses into a 15-second slashfest. Only the most masochist old-school players will complain about these cheap victories, because even when you do manage to berserk a boss, you likely have died from him many times before - if not during the long trek to his room.

And finally, there are grenades. These are used much like items in Castlevania: awkwardly hold up and press attack to throw in an arch. Unlike Castlevania, this is the only item you'll have which is pretty disappointing. You get used to jumping and throwing grenades, but it never feels quite right. This is one of many instances of how Oniken’s earnestness to emulate Nintendo games disservices the overall experience.

Oniken packs a lot of variety and creativity in its six levels which contain three areas each. Sometimes you’ll be platforming across conveyor belts with lava beneath while other times you’ll be force feeding grenades to a cybernetic polar bear while jumping spikes on a speeder bike. One area you will find consistency in, however, are Oniken’s tough-as-nails boss fights that demand you to quickly recognize an enemy pattern and stay the hell away from projectiles.

Most of the time, these boss encounters are a fun challenge, but a couple will frustrate in a way that is neither fair nor entertaining. One such boss is a snake that breathes fire down on you if you attack it. Not taking damage is a matter of endurance and luck. This boss is followed by an even more maddening boss: A robot you must fight from a small, moving platform - fall off and it's instant death. Until you recognize the specific attack pattern and necessary approach that a boss demands, Oniken will put you in a world of hurt. Once you run out of lives, you'll have to start the ~15-minute journey to the boss again.

While Oniken’s difficulty is decidedly old school, there are many times where I think the developer could have reconsidered its approach. Castlevania and Ninja Gaiden may have contained instant death traps, pits, and cheap aerial enemies, but these were not the things that made those games good. In fact, these are the things that keep many players from returning to them.

One aspect of tribute that can’t be knocked is the game’s presentation. 8-bit indie games are a dime a dozen these days, but rarely do they sound and look as great as Oniken. Though the backdrops and animation lack some detail displayed in the best Nintendo games, it’s an impressive effort nonetheless.

Oniken isn’t quite the magical pairing of nostalgia and great game design that Mega Man 9 was, but it comes close to scratching that same itch that few other games have done since. If you love 8-bit games and hate yourself, dying repeatedly within Oniken’s six merciless levels brings its own form of joy that is rare in games these days.
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32 of 37 people (86%) found this review helpful
2.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 29, 2014
Oniken is a 2D run and sword action game. The controls are simple, attack, jump, duck, berserk and up + attack to throw a grenade. It is all so nice. The attack distance is good and can be boosted with power ups you find. You can hang from things. This game really goes the extra mile to make you think you're playing something for the original Nintendo, while most other games going for the nostalgia feel don't have actual 8 bit graphics and music. I feel such a buzz playing this game unlike other 'retro-ish' games that miss the mark with modernized graphics and sound.

The cut scenes are nice to look at, but the real fun of the game is the game play and the enemy variety. You'll see a lot of enemies and tackle them in different ways. For modern gamers the game might be seen as difficult due to the fact if you die, you restart the section of the level. Die at a boss, restart that entire section. You'll get better! Lose all of your lives and you'll have to restart the level. Each level mainly consists of 3 sections, each with a mini boss of some sort. Since the save file allows you to just jump to a level, if I die on the first section of a level, I just go back to the menu and warp to the level I was on. Kinda makes lives on the first section of each level pointless. You have a hefty health bar like Mega Man, so the game is pretty forgiving. Pits are of course instant death.

The level variety is a mixed bag. Some levels are just bluntly walk to the right, others make you scale to the top and still others put you in a jet ski with a scrolling screen. There are a few sections that feel open where you're free to make your own path, which feels good. Some levels are needlessly difficult with a lot of action happening, but if your a veteran of old Nintendo games, you should be used to it. If not, then make an angry video about it.

There isn't that much replayability for the game, there are a few hidden items, one per level, and there are achievements for beating a level without dying. The game saves your high score for each level, but really, once you've beaten the game, there's no reason to come back to it.

Again, this is an awesome game well worth $10, it is so awesome that I'd buy any other game this studio comes out with. They hit the nail on the head. If you aren't into old school Nintendo games, avoid it.
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Recently Posted
3.2 hrs
Posted: October 26
Oniken is a solid throwback to NES games. It's simple to play but provides a challenge without being artificially difficult.

Gameplay is pretty basic. Move, jump, swing your sword, and throw grenades, that's it. There are crates scattered throughout levels which randomly provide grenades, health, or a sword power up that extends the range of your sword attack but goes away after you get hit several times. You have plenty of life, often enough to take at least 10 hits before you die. There are 6 levels in the game plus a bonus level. Each level has three stages. You are given 3 lives to complete each level, plus each level has a hidden extra life in it which are usually very easy to find, so really 4 lives per level. If you die during a level, you'll start back at the beginning of whichever stage you're on. If you run out of lives and have to continue, you will restart the level. This isn't that big of a deal. Stages can often be completed in under 3 minutes and every level can be completed in 5-10 minutes, so at worst, you lose a couple minutes of progress, and should get further with each attempt. Once you complete a level, you never have to go back to it again.

Most of the negative complaints seem to be about the how difficult and unfair this game is. On my only playthrough, I beat the entire first level without dying and didn't need to use a continue until the fourth level. I beat the game plus the bonus level in 2 to 2 ½ hours, I would hardly call that overly difficult or unfair. I'd imagine most of these complaints are from gamers who haven't played a game that challenges them. The game is challenging and you will have to get better to progress, but it is nowhere as hard as some old school NES games, and I rarely felt as though I died due to something cheap or artificially difficult. The only thing I felt was slightly unfair was the final boss at the end of level 6, but once I figured out a good strategy, I was able to take him down. Enemies, traps, and bosses are fair and attack in noticeable patterns that you can learn and exploit. You have plenty of life so messing up and getting hit often isn't a big issue. The game restores your health at the beginning of each stage during a level plus you'll likely find a health kit at some point in a stage.

My only real complaints are that sometimes the game wouldn't recognize when I was trying to throw a grenade, but that was probably more of an issue of me using the control stick instead of the pad. I would've also liked the game to be longer, but still enjoyed what I got.

Not much else to say. Story is there to give you an excuse to play levels, characters don't have much depth, music is ok. The game is all about challenging fun gameplay and it delivers. Do you have what it takes to become the true Oniken?
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Fugitive Mind
1.6 hrs
Posted: October 15
What can I say? An indie game done in a retro style with colourful graphics, precise controls, and awesome gameplay. The game only has six lengthy missions, but a game over means restarting the mission from the start. It's very easy to recommend to fans of retro games.

Hard as balls like some older NES games. Not as hard as Ninja Gaiden, but I knew I wouldn't be able to beat it unless I dedicated several hours to it. That being said, the game never made me angry even once. Any time I died felt fair. It's a very easy recommendation from me!
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5.1 hrs
Posted: October 9
5 Hours and cant beat level 3. 10/10
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17.1 hrs
Posted: October 6
Another good oldschool game, very hard, demanding and satisfying, if you are inpatient one or like throw controller in rage don't play it :)
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