Who's the boss?
ENSLAVED: Odyssey to the West is a futuristic update on the classic ancient Chinese novel, Journey to the West, which was originally published during the 1590s in the midst of the Ming Dynasty. In developer Ninja Theory's update, a huge global war has obliterated planet Earth, eradicating almost all of humankind. Now, rampaging Mech robots roam the land carrying out orders from an unknown malevolent source to enslave or terminate any human life forms they come across.
The story revolves around Monkey, a lone warrior who grew up in the jungles and has been on the run from the robots all his life. At the outset of the game he's captured by the Mechs and placed on a slave ship. While there, the ship runs into trouble and Monkey is able to escape the prison pod he's placed in. He then meets Trip, a young woman skilled in computer hacking.
After escaping the slave ship, Monkey is knocked unconscious and awakens with a strange headband that Trip has placed there. She refuses to remove it until he helps her return to her home, and explains that if he tries to escape, or she is injured, Monkey will die. Together they set out on a journey to the West all the while avoiding the clutches of the robots that roam the vast landscape that was once Earth.
Pushing the boundaries
Inspired by the acclaimed documentary Life after People, developer Ninja Theory has created a world filled with lush vegetation. Buildings are covered in vines; plant life has essentially taken over planet Earth transforming the cities in ENSLAVED: Odyssey to the West into a series of eerily beautiful places to explore and marvel at. It's unlike any other representation of a planet in ruins you're likely to have encountered on PlayStation 3 until now.
The acclaimed novelist and screenwriter Alex Garland, the visionary storyteller behind both The Beach and 28 Days Later, developed the story of ENSLAVED. Garland co-wrote the script with Ninja Theory's creative director, Tameem Antoniades and star, Andy Serkis. Serkis, famous for his superb motion capture performances in The Lord of the Rings and King Kong on the big screen not only plays Monkey, he also co-directed the game with Antoniades.
While the team at Ninja Theory animated all the combat and movement, ENSLAVED's cinematic scenes were performed by Serkis and his co-stars in specially designed motion capture suits. This allows for incredible facial gestures and movements, which in turn help to communicate the emotional story that Ninja Theory tells. Packed with action, a gripping tale and knockout performances from both Andy Serkis and his co-stars, ENSLAVED: Odyssey to the West is a journey you will never forget.
In ENSLAVED: Odyssey to the West you take control of Monkey, wielding a huge staff capable of smashing enemy robots into hunks of scrap metal. You'll also have to work with Trip to complete certain puzzles such as operating bridge levers to get across gaping ravines and escape the clutches of marauding enemies. Trip can also create distractions allowing you to sneak up behind an opponent and attack using a myriad of slick combo moves.
At the outset of the game you're equipped with a small selection of fighting abilities, and as you progress and collect Tech Orbs scattered throughout the environments, you can upgrade Monkey's arsenal. Enhancements range from counter-attacks through to health upgrades and equipping your staff with a plasma blast. These plasma blasts play a pivotal role in survival; you'll be able to fire two types of blasts, plasma and stun.
Plasma attacks can destroy an enemy in one or two shots, while stun shots cause robots to seize up, leaving them wide open to a secondary attack. They can also disable shielded enemies from afar and knock down massive bosses such as the Mech dog and robotic rhino. Trip can also unleash an electro magnetic pulse if she finds herself surrounded by enemies, giving you time to move in for a swift attack. While she doesn't have the ability to attack like Monkey, Trip does provide many useful tools throughout the adventure including a dragonfly equipped with a camera, which is perfect for scouting enemy patrols and displaying weak points on certain foes.
To make it through to the end of this epic journey you'll have to combine all of these abilities and work in tandem to get Trip back to her family and find out who exactly is behind the enslavement of all mankind.
Your odyssey to the West starts here...