Enslaved: Odyssey to the West Review

Developer: Ninja Theory
Publisher: Namco Bandai Games
Rating Guide: How I Review Games

Gameplay, Graphics and Sound

Ninja Theory crafted one of the more enjoyable adventures I’ve played on the Xbox 360.  They did so by blowing me away with visuals and that’s something to be said because I’m a visual whore for the most part.  The game’s characters aren’t the best you’ll find this generation but with all of the high energy action and the huge environments, you’ll look right past it.  While playing though I just wished that the characters looked as good as the environments they were in especially the enemies.  The mechs and other enemy types looked about the same througout.  However, you won’t mind because the war-ravaged world looks great and definitely torn apart and there’s quite a bit to explore.

You follow Monkey and Trip on an adventure that will quite literally keep you on the edge of your controller.  The opening sequence alone when you’re navigating a ship that’s about to crash is brilliant.  It may have been all those types of close encounters I found myself when navigating high areas.  I felt like one false move and I was plummeting to my death for sure.  I do wish though that there were more combat moves at your disposal.  For all the ass kicking that Monkey does, he doesn’t have a lot of “things” to do to an enemy.  It’s just a few different bone crushing moves at his disposal.

Be sure to grab as much “money” as possible.  Currency comes in the form of glowing red balls throughout the game.  They’re scattered everywhere so you won’t miss many.  Collect them and you’re able to upgrade Monkey’s staff etc.  The gameplay, fighting and navigating obstacles/puzzles is fairly easy.  I can respect the choice to not make this game hard to figure out.  It allows players to get right into the action and enjoy the story.

One of the cooler things (that could’ve been a lot cooler) is how you eventually use and control Trip.  She begins “enslaving” you with the little head device but moments into the game you’re able to command her.  You gain more commands as you progress such as ordering Trip to distract mechs with a  holographic decoy.  One of the more challenging moments in the game is when you have to command Trip and do your own navigating at the same time.

The cinematics in Enslaved were one of the best features of the game.  Ninja Theory doesn’t overload you with cutscenes so don’t worry.  I suppose when you have Gollum (Andy Serkis) co-directing things it helps.  I bet you guys didn’t know that Andy Serkis also plays the role of Monkey.  The guy is talented.  Audio wise the game was solid as well.  Although the voice was cheesy, Andy did a good job with Monkey.  He is as I mentioned the typical hero.  There were some audio glitches I ran into during some cutscenes but  it won’t break the experience.

Xbox LIVE Extras

Fortunately, Enslaved is a single person adventure.  Sure there’s DLC coming but the game isn’t to be played online.  I can’t imagine it any other way.  This generation needs more games like Enslaved to tell a great story and not be pimped out to multiplayer.

Conclusion

Enslaved is perhaps the sleeper hit of the year.  It has one of the most engaging stories I’ve played in an action adventure on the Xbox 360.  Monkey, the guy you play, is a pretty clever character that exemplifies the hero you find in most stories.  He’s a bad ass with morals so to speak.  If you’re into single player games with a very solid story, then it’s a no brainer to get enslaved with Enslaved: Odyssey to the West.

You just can’t help but feel like you’re inside an adventure the way the game plays out.  Being a Monkey is a cool thing these days. (wink)

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About the Author

They call me "The Velvet Voice". I'm a Microsoft Xbox MVP and Author of the Day 8 New Human War book series on Amazon.com. I like sunshine, games and large amounts of money. You can follow me on Twitter @deaconblade. Take a look at my About Me Bio for more on what I do.

10 Responses to “ Enslaved: Odyssey to the West Review ”

  1. Excellent review Deacon. I loved the demo for this game and I am really looking forward to playing it. I just don’t want to pay $60 for it since there is no multiplayer at all so not much replay value. How many hours of gameplay is it to get through this game?

  2. about 10-12 is a good guesstimate

  3. I own and beat this game son! :p It truly was a great experience and it felt GREAT to play something fresh for a change. I love how some people online were complaining that Monkey was “Ugly”….. LOLZ! They were dead serious and some explained why…. O_o

  4. Sorry for the double post, I left a sentence out…

    Great review Mr. Sir Man! Simple and to the point.

  5. i like it simple :)

  6. Yah this game looks great. I will buy when it drops in price.

  7. I actually really liked the demo, I need to rent this game when I have some free time.

  8. This type of game, unfortunately, is not my style. I prefer games with online multiplayer components, generally shooters. Wake me when their is something good on. ZZZzzzZZZ

  9. @Deadly, it looks like I will be renting as well since I missed out on the Amazon $25 dollar deal. As much as I want to play it, probably wont buy it since there is no multiplayer portion to add at least a little additional replay value.

  10. Yeah definately gonna pay some late fee’s and rent this one, metacritic rating on par with deac’s info. This and Vanquish = must rents.

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