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Posts Tagged ‘Enslaved’

“Overlooked Titles of 2010” or “Recommendations Please!”

December 23, 2010 1 comment

I recently came across this article on 1UP regarding some of the most overlooked games of 2010. Sure we have all played (and reveled in the supreme glory of Red Dead Redemption, and Cataclysm, and Call of Duty: Black Ops, and Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood and all the other blockbuster titles that came out this year. But what of the sleeper hits? Games that was undeniably well-conceived, developed and executed, but just couldn’t generate the hype or get enough of a favorable rating?

One such game that I have been championing for some time has been Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, and sure as day, that title was part of the list that 1UP compiled. Some of the other titles on the list that I am aware of but never bothered to check were:

  • Deadly Premonition
  • Darksiders
  • Hoard
  • Cave Story
  • Alpha Protocol

I am wondering if any of you guys have played these games, what you have to say about them, and if you think they are worthy investment’s of my time.

Categories: Enslaved

“Why I loved Enslaved” or “Here Piggy Piggy Piggy!”

November 12, 2010 1 comment

Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, which would have been better named just “Enslaved”, is one of my favorite games of 2010. Don’t let the above-average critic reviews fool you. This action adventure game is one for the keeping. The following are some of the reasons I absolutely loved this novel, innovative game in a sea of over-hyped, over-budgeted, over-saturated AAA titles:

  • The Setting: The game is set in a post-apocalyptic New York; except its been hundreds of years since the city fell, and unlike Fallout’s arid landscape or Metro 2033’s dreary tunnels, this version of New York has been overrun by nature. Vegetation is abundant and has spread itself to every crevice, corner and edge. The whole city gives the vibe of a true urban jungle, and the effect is gloriously gorgeous.
  • The Story: In simplest terms, the story can be explained as “protagonist helps secondary protagonist get home”. But Enslaved story is like an onions, layers peeling away to show additional layers and complexity. The characters are real, their tragedies are heartfelt and profound, and their quest unbearably daunting and seemingly impossible. Again, in the simplest terms, it is a story about getting from point A to point B, and the two points are filled with further iterations of mini-quests requiring you to get from point A to B. But at the end of the day, as is so often the case in life, the journey becomes the legend, and the destination and purpose only serve as fringe concepts to drive the plot forward.
  • The Lore: Anyone who puts themselves through the trouble of reading my blog knows that I am a huge lore buff. I live for lore. So it is a bit strange that I am in love with a game that gives you as few elements of the background story and how the current world cam to be. There are subtle hints strewn across the landscape. Missing person posters in Grand Central Station, vestiges of prominent landmarks, and the dialogue in general give you a very vague idea of what might have happened to the world as we know it in 2010, but they don’t offer much else beyond that. I normally get cranky in a lore-starved game, but in this one, the scenery itself was the lore, and the lack of in-your-face walls-of-text lore was quite alright by me.
  • The Characters: The characters reveal themselves in bits and pieces, leaving much of the construction to the minds and imaginations of the players. The main characters don’t even exchange names a good hour, hour-and-a-half into the game, an homage to the slow but steady appreciation and respect they develop for each other. The voice-acting is phenomenal, the facial expressions are perfectly molded to the character’s psyche and emotional strain. Hell even the gait and mannerisms are well thought0out and character-appropriate.

I am not trying to sing unending praises for Enslaved, for it certainly has its flaws at time, such as unclear mission objectives and frustrating puzzle solving. But all in all, when considered as a whole, it is the sleeper hit of 2010 that wasn’t, and I can’t wait to get more of this bold new IP.

Speaking of which, the game has an upcoming DLC, starring the game’s playable sidekick Pigsy. You can watch a trailer, or screenshots from the upcoming DLC, Pigsy’s Perfect 10,  below:

Categories: DLC, Enslaved, Review

“Honesty is the Best Review Policy” or “Too Many Games on my Plate”

November 2, 2010 6 comments

I have a metric ton of video games to play through right now. I just finished Medal of Honor, but that doesn’t feel like much of an accomplishment, since the single player portion lasted all of five hours and some change. That and it wasn’t as epic, except for select, spectacularly scripted events, as that certain other video game the name of which I quite forget right now.

Then there is Red Dead Redemption, of which I have played the beginning 7-8 hours twice now, and the only way to continue playing is to do it again. The first time my ROM was corrupted. When that got fixed, my hard drive crashed, killing all save data. So now I can either forget Red Dead Redemption, and just enjoy the Zombie goodness in Undead Nightmare DLC, or start over. Again. I haven’t made up my mind about that yet.

Then there is Enslaved, Halo: Reach (not particularity impressed so far honestly), Plants vs. Zombies (sheer brilliance), Mafia II, Vanquish and Fallout: New Vegas.

And before I can even think of finishing any of these, we already have Fable III, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II and Call of Duty: Black Ops out. *sigh*

Muhahahaha indeed!

Being an addict though, despite my massive backlog of titles, I couldn’t help but indulge myself in some reviews to see which of the three new releases mentioned above were worth investing in. The one that intrigued me most was Fable III, partly because the title has managed to generate a lot of hype around it, partly because it features some of the greatest voice talent cast, and partly because a diseased part of me hopes and begs and prays each day that Peter Molyneux would release something that actually lives up to the incredible amount of hype he manages to generate around his games. The reviews I came across ranged from “mildly mediocre” to “stupendously superb”, and the range of opinions was so wide and disparate, that I couldn’t make up my mind about buying the title.

That is till I came across Michael Abbott’s review of the game over at The Brainy Gamer. In recent memory, that is probably the most comprehensive, honest and unbiased review I have read about a video game. Granted it is only for the first few hours, but I for one will be monitoring Abbot’s progress and feedback on the game to see if it improves or degenerates. Abbott, if you’re reading this, you alone have the power now to make Mr. Molyneux another $59.99. Rock on!

Keen on the other end, is quite happy with his first ten minutes in the game.