Introduced in Build 124.0, the Ninja is the first class to use the katana weapon, and the first class to possess an ability that has two separate functions, speed and damage, based on how the ability key is used. Build X10.3 saw the damage and range of tiered katana buffed, which made Ninja a much more viable class to use with a tiered weapon. Build X.31.4 increased his VIT cap, which slightly increased his viability further.
Today, the Ninja is one of two katana classes, along with the Samurai. The katana has an attack range shorter than that of a dagger, effectively making the Ninja a melee class. Ninja is the only melee class to wear leather instead of heavy armor, which trades defensive capabilities for augmented offensive power. Unlocking him requires attaining level 20 with both Rogue and Warrior. See his stat gains, caps and averages here.
With a cap of 70 in both attack and dexterity, Ninja can do a lot of damage in a short amount of time. A speed cap of 60 allows him to move fast for a melee class even without his ability, and a wisdom cap of 70 gives him relatively quick mana regeneration. Ninja also has relatively high health regen, with a vitality cap of 60. However, Ninja is tied with Warrior for having the lowest DEF cap among melee classes, at 25. Combined with leather armor, Ninja is a relatively frail class that is more prone to damage than other melee classes. Ninja’s equipment choices emphasize high DPS, speed, and skillful dodging techniques.
The Ninja’s weapon of choice is the katana. Katana are essentially swords with lower damage per shot but a longer range and, more importantly, the ability to pierce enemies. The piercing ability of katana make them very effective against closely clustered enemies and bosses that surround themselves with minions or other projectile-absorbing objects. The drawback to the katana is that its range, while longer than tiered swords, might still be too short for some to comfortably get close to dangerous enemies. The multiple options of katana available allow Ninja to fulfill a variety of roles and situations.
The Muramasa and Masamune are the best tradable tiered katana, dealing high damage to multiple enemies with the Ninja’s naturally high attack and dexterity stat caps. With a range of 4.75 tiles, Ninja can stand a decent distance from enemies while still doing heavy damage. The Sadamune is much more powerful than the Masamune, but it is only obtainable from the endgame Void Entity, making it very rare and exclusive.
The Ray Katana is an untiered katana that has a 6.12 tile range, allowing Ninja to fight from much farther away than tiered katana allow. However, the bump in range comes with a price of significantly lower (albeit consistent) damage output than most other katana. It drops from the Eye of the Dragon.
The Sullen Blade is a unique katana that fires 3 projectiles in an arc pattern, similar to that of tiered bows. It potentially has the most DPS of all katana. However, it possesses a very short range of 3.75 tiles, an even shorter true range of 1.37 tiles, and lacks the ability to pierce. Its high DPS can come to use in situations that allow the Ninja to get close enough to fully utilize the Sullen Blade’s power, such as event chests or the Mysterious Crystal (but do be wary of the Crystal’s quiet nova). This katana is dropped by Feargus the Obsidian Dragon and his hardmode variant.
The Doku No Ken (Doku) is probably the most practical katana that a Ninja can use. This katana has a range of 5.2 tiles and a 120% rate of fire. Its DPS curve follows the Masamune very closely; it has a slightly higher DPS than Masamune against enemies below 40 defense, but thereafter loses its edge by a similarly small margin. Its increased range effectively makes it an upgrade over tiered katana, but the Sadamune will always outdamage it where enemies are approachable within tiered katana range. The shots fired from the Doku travel in a wavy pattern similar to a staff’s shots, which for some players makes it more difficult to land hits. The shots “true up” at the middle and end of their lifetime, allowing you to attack at maximum range without drawback. It can be found in the Crawling Depths.
The Void Blade is an odd katana that can be found in the Toxic Sewers. In a similar vein to the Wand of the Bulwark, it has a slow rate of fire but high per-shot damage. Its DPS is higher than all tiered katana as well as the Doku, and it edges the Sullen Blade out by about 40 DEF. However, the catch to this powerful DPS is that this katana has a range of 0. The projectiles fired by this katana float in place for 4.2 seconds before disappearing, and any enemy that runs into it will take massive damage (although one shot will not hit the same enemy twice). This katana is very effective against enemies with certain predictable movement patterns, such as fast chaser enemies. It has the potential to make short work of certain dungeon bosses such as Limon the Sprite Goddess, and it can also kill many godlands and quest enemies in a single hit! In short, if you can manage to exploit enemy movement patterns and stack projectiles for maximum damage, this is a great swapout.
The Kazekiri is an ST katana attributed to Samurai’s special themed set. Compared to a tiered katana, it has a shorter range of 4.5 tiles and lower per-shot damage. However, it compensates for this by firing a second shot. The shots of the Kazekiri have a curve, like the Doku. Similarly, they will true up at the end of their range. The Kazekiri can outdamage the Masamune up to ~57 DEF, the Sadamune up to ~33 DEF, and the Doku up to ~65 DEF. However, Ninja might find the reduced range to be a hindrance. This katana is dropped by Daichi the Fallen.
The Ninja’s ability, the star, provides two functions based on how the ability key is used. When the key is held down, every star grants the Speedy status, raising your speed by 50% and draining 10MP per second, as well as disabling mana regeneration from wisdom. When the ability button is released, Ninja throws the star in the direction the cursor is aimed. A star will be thrown every time the ability key is released, so long as mana is available for it. The speedy of higher-tiered stars is not any more efficient than the lower tiers. In fact, using a higher tiered star solely for speedy is less mana efficient, especially if the ability key is cycled frequently. Most stars have a long enough range that they can snipe certain bosses, such as Dr. Terrible, without activating them. Unlike most quivers, most stars do not pierce enemies, so aim carefully.
The case for the Basic Star and Four-Point Star is to maximize mana efficiency while extensively using the speedy. Ninja should equip this when speed is important and damage is not a priority. Another reason to carry a low tier star is to spam the ability and abuse the 10-15 tile range, allowing the Ninja to easily attain soulbound damage on difficult-to-approach bosses such as Wine Cellar Oryx.
The Wind Circle is noteworthy for having a faster speed than any other star. With a range of 17 tiles, it also has one of, if not the, longest ranges of any weapon or ability usable by the player in the entire game. Its faster projectile speed makes it slightly easier to hit enemies, but it is not particularly efficient damage.
The Ice Star and Doom Circle are the best tiered stars; they have the highest damage output, a range of 15 tiles, and cost the most MP per throw. These stars are useful when the power of the ability is the top priority. The Doom Circle in particular has the most efficient damage output of all stars, the Ice Star being a close second.
The Midnight Star is a rare UT star. This star can paralyze an enemy for 4 seconds, longer than any other ability is capable of. This can make it useful while rushing or fighting bosses. However, its damage is significantly lower than tiered stars, matching the damage per mana efficiency of the basic star. This could be used as a primary star, but only if you are comfortable with it and can use this star to its full potential. This star drops from the Ivory Wyvern.
The Kageboshi is another UT star that drops from the Jade and Garnet Statues. This star is the only one with the ability to pierce enemies, giving it the potential to be very powerful against many enemies at once. However, its damage against singular targets is significantly lower than that of most tiered stars, and its range of 8.4 tiles is also the shortest of all stars. Because of the significant drop in damage, it is only worthwhile to use this star if you can consistently hit more than one target with it.
The leather armors worn by the Ninja amplify his protection against enemy attacks and enhance his attack speed through increased dexterity.
The Griffon Hide Armor (Griffon) and Hydra Skin Armor (Hydra) is the main armor of the Ninja. Providing a high increase to defense and great boosts to dexterity, they are perfect generalist armors for any Ninja player.
The Beehemoth Armor is an untiered leather armor obtained from The Nest and the Killer Bee Nest event. This armor is a very useful rushing armor, as it provides the same defensive strength of Hydra but grants speed instead of dexterity. The armor is beneficial if you want to prioritize moving faster over attacking faster.
The Spectral Cloth Armor is an untiered leather armor obtained from Davy Jones. This armor amplifies the Ninja’s speed and provides a better DPS boost than a tiered leather armor, while sacrificing some defense. This is an armor that should be used by Ninjas who are prioritizing DPS.
The Golem Garments are an untiered leather armor obtained from the Lost Halls. This armor is essentially a far stronger, albeit much rarer version of the Spectral Cloth Armor. Providing a massive +8 to ATT, while giving the same DEF as Spectral is a powerful combination. It is perfect for any Ninja that is prioritizing raw DPH, such as with the Void Blade.
The Armor of Nil is an untiered leather armor obtained from the Void Entity.
Compared to any other leather armor, this is by far the most protective. It boasts the highest defense increase of any other armor in its category and thus makes it one of the best armors for Ninjas. While it doesn’t provide any dexterity increases, and does tax some speed, the Ninja already has such high speed and dexterity that it is a negligible loss. However, as a rare drop from the Void Entity, it is one of the rarest items in the game.
The Ninja specializes in being fast, and dealing massive damage. As such, the rings that a Ninja should wear must reflect this specialization or compensate for his lack of other statistics.
The Ring of Unbound Health (UBHP) and Ring of Decades (Deca) are always great choices to use on any class, because they increase your character’s health and thus increase their longevity in surviving battles. Any health ring is always a good choice, and should never be excluded in most cases. The Ring of Unbound Defense (UBDef) is also an option for those who desire more DEF, since Ninja’s armor choice gives him the lowest DEF among melee classes. The choice of whether to use an HP or DEF ring is up to the player; many players swear by wearing an HP ring over a DEF ring. Indeed, having too high a DEF is less beneficial than having more HP in most cases. On the other hand, Ninja’s status as having the lowest DEF of all melee classes makes a tiered DEF ring more justifiable than it would be on a class like Warrior or Knight.
The Ring of Unbound Attack is an offensive alternative to the HP and DEF rings. Attack rings boost the Ninja’s DPH, which helps him better match other high-power classes like Wizard. However, using this kind of ring denies Ninja the extra health or DEF that would help him better survive.
The Ring of Unbound Speed, along with other speed rings is another alternative choice to the aforementioned rings, albeit one that is usually not taken. Because the Ninja can control when he is under speedy, with a higher SPD stat the Ninja can rush much faster. Because this does not make you more powerful, nor increase your survivability, it is a ring that is only useful if you can dodge properly with all that extra speed.
The Experimental Ring (Expo) and Bracer of the Guardian (Bracer) are both good generalist rings for Ninjas, just like any other class. They amplify HP, MP, DEF, and in the case of the bracer, ATT. Because of these, they help the Ninja out in most cases.
The Ring of the Pyramid (Pyra) and Forgotten Crown (Crown) are both great rings in regard to the balance of power and survivability they provide. In the case of Pyra, it augments defense and HP as well as attack, increasing the Ninja’s survivability. In the case of Crown, it increases Ninja’s HP capacity and enhances his attack power greatly.
The Ninja is a swift and lethal class. His power rivals that of Wizard and Archer, and becomes superior against high defense enemies. In the hands of a skilled player, Ninja can be one of the quickest and most powerful classes in the game. The speed boost he possesses can be activated at will, giving him a rushing flexibility exclusive to the class. The stars also allow Ninja to strike enemies well beyond the range of any other weapon. Compared to Samurai, Ninja has a slightly lower ATT cap but can do much more DPS and run faster because of his superior DEX, SPD, and WIS caps.
His weaknesses are having a short range weapon, being fragile due to his leather armor, and his somewhat low health regeneration for a melee class (even though it would be considered above average compared to other non-healer classes). Like any melee class, a freshly leveled Ninja might struggle to farm godlands or complete events compared to non-melee classes, largely due to the short range of katana. The range advantage over swords does ease some of the range anxiety, which is especially helpful on a leather class. A Ninja can overcome his disadvantages using his ludicrous speed to evade projectiles, and his high power to defeat enemies quickly. As with any class, his health regen can be supplemented by a decent healing pet.
Ninja’s ability to rush and quickly take out smaller enemies can be a benefit to a group of players. Similar to a dagger class using the Bone Dagger or a bow class, taking minions out quickly allows other players who cannot pierce enemies to deal damage. He can also rush dungeons far quicker than any class other than possibly the Rogue or Trickster, allowing a group to complete a difficult dungeon such as a Tomb of the Ancients much more quickly. Maxed mana, wisdom and speed will greatly aid you in any rushes you may take part in. Ninja is well-known for his extended speed boosts while rushing dungeons, attaining the highest sustained speed in the game with the proper equipment. If a Ninja has the Midnight Star, he can also fulfill the role of paralyzing enemies normally taken by Archer.
Ninja also has a particularly unique role that no other class can perform as effectively: Closing Realms.
Ninja’s on demand speed boost and massive damage potential make him the best class to run between essential quest enemies, thus spawning event bosses quicker, and closing a realm much faster.
The Ninja’s low defense stat compared to a sword class makes it trickier to defeat cube gods and skull shrines. However, using his speed, the Ninja can dip in quickly to deal damage and then retreat while throwing his star for a final burst of damage.
Thanks to the Ninja’s high speed, pentaracts are a breeze. By simply staying mobile a Ninja can dodge almost any attack thrown at him by the towers and the eyes. Compared to other classes, the Ninja excels at getting damage in on all five towers.
The Ninja can easily engage a ghost ship as long as he avoids the large cannonballs. During the tempest cloud phase, it can be trickier due to a confined space provided by the ghost ship. Despite this, it remains an easy event boss for Ninjas.
The Rock Dragon is peculiar. During the first phase, Ninja is one of the best classes at destroy its body segments and pushing the dragon to phase two. In the second phase however, the Ninja struggles to keep up with the eye while avoiding getting too close, lest it suffer massive damage or instant death from the eye’s omnidirectional attack. If someone paralyzes the eye however, Ninjas easily destroy it.
The Hermit God is an easy kill for a Ninja. However, they must be wary to avoid chain-paralyzations from the hermit minions. Because the Ninja has a lower defense than heavy armor classes, he must be wary to avoid being sat on by multiple tentacles or it could be the end of him.
As with any short-ranged class, the Ninja must be especially wary when facing the Jade and Garnet statues. While most of their attacks are dangerous, the truly lethal technique is their sliding radial attack. Ninjas must be wary to avoid taking massive damage or outright die to these bosses.
The Lord of the Lost Lands is a simple, and easy event boss on its own. Even with the minions it spawns it remains a less-than-threatening opponent for a Ninja. However, one must be wary of getting slowed or being sat on by protection crystals.
The Grand Sphinx is an easy event boss for Ninja to do, although one must be wary of the horrid reapers and the Sphinx’s Z-shots. Despite this, Ninjas own this fight.
The Avatar of the Forgotten King has the capability to be very dangerous, however as long as the Ninja times his movements carefully, they will never be hit by its attacks. Ninjas are very useful during the eye phase as their piercing attacks help kill the eyeballs quicker. But aside from this, Ninjas are rather average in this fight.
The Killer Bee Nest is a particularly stressful and dangerous event for Ninja to participate in. While they are very good at clearing out the smaller bees, they struggle to get close to the lesser nests and destroy them due to the high frequency of shots and frequent armor breaks. The actual nest itself tends to be rather easy for a Ninja since it attacks slowly and has many openings.
The true difficulty comes from the beehemoths. They move quickly, and have very dangerous shotgun patterns along with inflicting a number of dangerous status effects for a Ninja, especially confusion and paralyze. Because of this, Ninjas will struggle in this event.
The Lost Sentry is another difficult event boss for Ninjas to face. It has many shot patterns that are often quite elaborate, which can be difficult to dodge for a Ninja, and the threat of the spectral sentry constantly looms overhead with a deadly armor piercing shotgun. Getting slowed is particularly detrimental in this fight, and Ninjas must do very well to avoid damage at all costs lest they suffer a swift death.
Ninjas can completely shred through Stheno, the Fountain Spirit, Limon, Septavius, and Skuld with ease, making the farming of Speed, Dexterity, and Wisdom Potions quite easy.
Ninjas can also tear through Malphas with relative ease. But they will meet more resilient foes in the form of Ruthven, the Puppet Master, and Gulpord. Additionally, Dr. Terrible and his horrific creation can prove to be a tedious battle. However, with proper movement and skill, a Ninja can rip through them and farm vitality, attack, and defense fairly easily.
The Nightmare Colony is a durable opponent that requires the multitasking of barrel kicking and close proximity combat to be defeated. Ninjas can somewhat easily secure victory in this fight but must know when to back away.
Davy Jones is dangerous at close range due to his powerful shotguns and bleeding. However, as long as Ninjas pace themselves and focus on attacking the lanterns they should not have too much trouble.
Daichi is a lengthy and dangerous boss fight with many phases. His most dangerous attack is a shotgun of three massive bullets that deal huge impact damage. However, if Ninjas can avoid these when they appear he is not a terrifying encounter.
The dragons of Draconis are very powerful, and extremely dangerous opponents. Which can be difficult for a Ninja to engage. The Ivory Wyvern in particular can be significantly dangerous given the large number of bullets in its battle, and Ninjas are likely to struggle at getting effective damage in here.
Jon Bilgewater can be a very dangerous boss in small groups, due to his many high damage attacks and a dangerous confusion projectile. However, as long as Ninjas manage dodging and focus down the giant parrots quickly they should come out on top.
The Murderous Megamoth is extremely dangerous for Ninjas to face, given the ruthless power of its larvae. The initial two phases are not particularly lethal to a Ninja but the third and final form can very easily obliterate him.
The Son of Arachna is not particularly dangerous as long as you destroy the eggs before activating him. Its weakening bullet is powerful but it can be easily dodged by a Ninja. You will be almost permanently slowed during the whole fight, so your dodging must be on top of the game at all times.
Thessal the Mermaid Goddess is not to be taken lightly; her many attacks are dangerous to a Ninja and when armor broken she will absolutely annihilate Ninjas in seconds. Take her on with caution.
Esben in particular is not often the main threat in an ice cave. However, his attacks are numerous and extremely powerful. The graves, however, can be deadly if a Ninja strays too close to their whirlwinds.
The Ninja is very good at getting precise damage on tomb bosses. As such he can easily keep a tomb clean. However, the tomb bosses have extremely high power and can destroy a Ninja in seconds if they catch him off guard.
The Killer Bee Queen is a terrifying monstrosity that absolutely cannot be taken lightly. Due to her extreme power, numerous battle phases, and deadly attacks at close range, this is a foe that Ninjas struggle greatly to face.
Ninja has a very hard time in the Shatters; enemies do massive amounts of damage and it is very easy to be overwhelmed. The bosses, however, give Ninjas the biggest run for their money, due to their high damage output and overwhelming resilience.
The Lost Halls pose a significant challenge to anyone who enters. Ninjas actually fare rather well, and can even defeat the Marble Defender with somewhat little effort. However, the marble colossus possesses an extreme threat level to Ninjas and will completely destroy them if given the chance. The agonized titan is an easier boss that Ninjas can even solo, and will grant access to the cultist hideout.
The cultist hideout poses a more easily managable experience for Ninjas. However, the danger remains quite high for the bosses of this area. Ninjas must move tactically and carefully to succeed against them, but will be greatly rewarded for doing so.
The Void Entity poses perhaps the greatest threat out of any boss other than the killer bee queen to Ninjas. A massive amount of health, extremely devastating attacks, and a time limit to defeat it along with numerous lethal minions. This is a place that Ninjas will severely struggle in if they aren’t surrounded by a lot of allies.
The Ninja is a very effective class if you want to kill things quickly and have an itchy trigger finger on your ability key. If you want a powerful piercing melee class that can also rush dungeons quickly, and you can manage the lack of armor or healing abilities, then the Ninja is for you.