Review: Enslaved – Odyssey to the West


Enslaved: Odyssey to the West feels like something I’d have seen in a movie theater and enjoyed. Perhaps that’s the point Ninja Theory, its creator, is trying to make.

The fusion of techniques from the movie world into the creation of games has been a long-pursued subject. Gamemakers have always sought ways to make their works feel more epic or artistic. Some games offer cinematic treatment to their cutscenes, while others blast your ears with high-end sound engineering or dramatic musical scores. Some use their characters as the engine for the whole experience.

Enslaved attempts to do all of the above, using a blend of glorious visuals, exquisite voicework/character development and action, hoping the player will be too busy enjoying the ride to notice any shortcomings.
Continue reading

Ninja Theory’s Enslaved has a new trailer

From the makers of Heavenly Sword comes Enslaved, inspired by the Chinese novel “Journey to the West” and updated to a post-apocalyptic level of action and adventure. Although it was announced awhile back with a few screens, here’s the first official trailer that actually shows off gameplay.

The story is being penned by 28 Days Later scribe, Alex Garland, and looks to have put a nice twist on an old legend from what the trailer has shown. Some parts of it come off with a few familiar elements from Ubisoft’s Prince of Persia with the intertwining mechanics between Elika and the Prince, now between the characters of Monkey and Trip who controls him, though it sounds like there will be more of an emphasis on protecting Trip than in relying on her to keep rescuing you.

I’m going to wait until I see more on this one, though. Heavenly Sword was fun, Andy Serkis was great, and Ninja Theory has the imaginative chops to create fun environments. But gameplay-wise, I wasn’t as blown away by its lackluster action as I was by its well written characters. Still, I’m willing to give this one a little leeway and see just where this legend is going to take us.