Many people see turtles as really slow and weak creatures that are vulnerable to predators without any defense aside from their sturdy shell. If the shell is gone, the turtle is good as gone too. This is probably the reason why Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird's idea of the Ninja Turtles has made it big. Just the thought of turtles that move like ninjas is already quite appealing!
Unlike many comic book superheroes and characters, the Ninja Turles (also known as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) did not begin with a popular comics company like Marvel or DC. The concept of the Ninja Turtles originated from a comical doodle drawn by Kevin Eastman who was brainstorming with his buddy named Peter Laird that night. On their own, the two published a single issue of the comics which is about four Ninja Turtles which were made to parody the then popular comics- Cerebus by Dave Sim, Ronin by Frank Miller, New Mutants, and Daredevil by Marvel.
The Ninja Turtles started to have their fair share of fame when Mark Freedman who is a licensing agent offered Eastman and Laird an opportunity to merchandise their offbeat work more extensively. They worked with several people to make action figures based on the characters they made. An animated television series was also made and was shown on CBS in 1987. In 2009, Nickelodeon bought the rights to all Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Properties from Mirage which is only left with the right to publish 18 issues every year.
The four Ninja Turtles are Leonardo (also known as Leo), Raphael (also known as Raph), Michelangelo (also known as Mikey or Mike), and Donatello (also known as Donny or Don). In some comics, the Ninja Turtles are shown to wear red masks. However, they were later on given different colored masks to make it easier for people to recognize each of them.
Leonardo is the leader of the team who wears a blue mask. He is also the oldest among the four and he uses two Katanas as his weapon. He is a devoted student of martial arts and the most skilled fighter among the Ninja Turtles. In contrast, Raphael is the bad boy of the team. He wears a red mask and uses a pair of Sai as a weapon. He is an aggressive fighter.
On the other hand, Donatello who wears a purple mask and uses bo staff is the intelligent guy of the group. He is an inventor, engineer, scientist, and just a plain technological genius. He is the least violent turtle who prefers to use his intelligence for settling disagreements.
Finally, Michelangelo who wears an orange mask and uses a pair of Nanchaku as his weapon is an easy-going and blithe turtle. In most versions of the story, he is the youngest among the four. He loves to relax and eat pizza.
The Ninja Turtles were named after Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael (the Italian painter and architect), Michelangelo Buonarroti, and Donatello (the sculptor). They have a sensei (master) named Splinter- a Ninjutsu expert Japanese mutant rat who serves as their adoptive father.
As the characters rose to fame, many Ninja Turtles games have been made. Ninja Turtles games can be played online as flash games. But there are also many Ninja Turtles games available for old and new gaming consoles. Some Ninja Turtles games include Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Arcade Attack, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time Re-Shelled.