Friday, 24 September 2010

First Thoughts : Enslaved : Odyssey to the West.

Set 150 years into the future in a typical post apocalyptic America, Enslaved follows he story of an overly muscular man called Monkey, the name is enhanced by the fact he moves like one. Monkey has spent his whole life running from the combat Mech's left over from a great war between the Mechanoids and the Humanoids and the Demo starts with monkey escaping from a slave air-ship where he seems to have been placed captive.

At this point i had to say the game was nothing special a series of run and jump obstacles followed as you got used to the mini-Hercules ability to bounce from place to place very quickly. This bouncing has a point as the ship you are on is crashing, parts are exploding left, right and centre and the ships 10 escape pods seem to be jettisoning one by one,on top of this Monkey is chasing a yet unknown but quite spritely girl across the ship for some reason I couldn't fathom. Along the way Monkey bumps into a Mech and is tasked with retrieving his equipment that was stolen from him on his capture.

Upon retrieving the gear this is where the game starts getting special. Normally combat during tense escape scenes annoys me as it slows the game down too much when you just want to keep moving, here we have an exception, The combat is set at just the right fast pace that you still keep the tense urgency of the escape but are fully involved in fighting the ugly Mech's in front of you. Combat is not simply keep pressing X until the enemies have exploded, you actually have to think here as if you dont you will die very quickly, you are forced into rolling , guarding and thinking about your position in relation to the enemies and this is indeed a good thing.

After gleefully bashing in some robot skulls you are sent jumping around like your name sake, in a way that even the Prince of Persa would be proud of for someone your size, to find your way to the last escape pod. On the way it throws more Mech's your way and even blows off half the air-ship your travelling on when it hits the statue of liberty and plummets towards some of the skylines tallest buildings. The tension that is built up during these scenes is excellent, its almost like you are watching a movie when the building is coming closer and your climbing up the side of a large wing not sure if your clear or not for the impact.

The demo ends with Monkey attached to the unknown ladys escape pod when it crashes to the ground after being jettisoned from the Ship. Monkey wakes up with a headache and a new piece of headgear which the lovely lady who hasn't even said hello to him nicely attached to his brain. The lady explains that the collar will kill him if she dies and she would like him to help her escape to her village, The reason for fleeing is ( I am assuming) she is being chased by the Mech's and for some reason ( at this point unmentioned, like her name) is very important, this bargaining chip means he has no choice to agree and off they go on the journey.

I must say this is one of the best demo's I have played for a long time, the graphics are smooth ad polished and the voice acting is spot on . Easily this could be one of the most underrated but excellent games this quarter. Even if its only the demo do check this game out !

for anyone that's wondering.... her name is Trip.

Release date and platforms : October 2010  - Xbox360 / Ps3

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