Enslaved As It Should Have Been

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Weird. I can't think of any game that involves taking advantage of a robotic playable character in order to mess with the timeline like Yahtzee was talking about.

In fact, I can't really think of too many games that you play as a robot. Clank I guess? Glitch from Metal Arms? There could be some cool stuff done with that. And most lead characters don't have any personality or fleshy vulnerability anyways, so there's no loss!

Not bad but when you said flys with a cloud I was thinking DBZ. You think Trip would have been better as a guy?

Yahtzee Croshaw:
Extra Punctuation: Enslaved As It Should Have Been

Yahtzee wonders why Ninja Theory based Enslaved on the Chinese novel Journey to the West if it was just going to add killer robots.

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I think it rather interesting how you actually have much better plot ideas for games than people who get PAID to think up this shit. Id don't know about subroutine for obeidiance though. That might take away the personality and enter blind obeidiance into the question. Perhaps a shock collar or such would still work, but something time-set. Otherwise he's not going out of atonement for past sins, but because his brain is programmed to

Wonderful idea though

Blind Sight:

Ampersand:
I have a question.
Why do you seem to have a problem with men who are strong looking strong? Seriously you bring it up in almost every review.

Androphobia and a Napoleon complex?

Ha. Very good. = D

Okami shows that you can adapt mythology into a game without having to set it on the Planet of the Apes...

Optimystic:
Here's some more good ideas:

Monkey teams up with a newt in a fez to rescue the large-bosomed Tripitaka from mummies.

Tripitaka (with large bosoms) journeys through time to pay for a breast enlargement.

Monkey and Tripitaka join a race of bosom people on their bosom armada to find a new bosom homeworld.

Bosoms melons milk factories busts funbags knockers ballistiques boobies jugs nipples jubblies stonking great tits

I don't mean to be nasty, but I question the wisdom of making such an old reference, especially since you've taken it out of its context of Yahtzee trying not to mention tits in that review.

Hmm, no. Sorry Yahtzee, but your idea sounds a little too dull.

If there's ever to be a Journey To The West game, I'd very much want it it to feel organic. Then again, you designed it as a sci-fi game which I don't think fits the story at all. Same as that sci-fi and Nordic mythology just don't mix.

Fronzel:

I don't mean to be nasty, but I question the wisdom of making such an old reference, especially since you've taken it out of its context of Yahtzee trying not to mention tits in that review.

It wasn't meant as a commentary on anything, I'm just reminded of it every time he has a game idea :)

Purely for humor purposes, nothing more

To me the important part of this article was pointing out that deviating so far from the source material makes it a wonder why there aren't more IPs being created. Most recently, in the ZP Castlevania: LoS video, Yahtzee points out that most of the game doesn't involve being in a castle, or fighting Dracula, for that point. For a franchise famous for 2D vampire castle exploration, a 3D generic-monster forest-y mountain climbing game seems different enough to warrant a new IP.

I know the industry is hardly one to have a stable experimentation field, but I'm sure the writers and artists will be happy to have some original input on a new gameplay idea.

Fronzel:

Okami shows that you can adapt mythology into a game without having to set it on the Planet of the Apes...

You should put this in a spoiler box.

But yeah, the ending to Okami was kinda stupid. As in "aliens in Indiana Jones" stupid.

It's not just deviating from books. Games like , Dissidia: Final Fantasy, and Super Mario (Insert Noun Here) are deviants from the originals in such significant ways, why not have a few writers and artists play around with a new IP?

EDIT: For some reason my first comment wasn't visible; sorry about the double post.

That idea of yours is....actually very very interesting, and plus it has Jetpacks..FUCKING Jetpacks. Hell, I'm sold on it!

Why read Journey to the West when they have cartoon series and DVD. Of course you would need to know some Chinese unless the DVDs had subtitles for English, but as for any typical Chinese DVD series, they only have Chinese subtitles and a load of DVDs. My parents have the DVD series of Journey to the West, and I only got to around episode 110, and that was only half of the DVDs....now that I think about it, the special effects are corny to todays standards, but that didn't mattered 10 years ago.

The game is Inspired by JTTW. If it WAS jttw then the argument would be stronger. If i make a game branded "inspired by jam sandwiches" it will be related to jam sandwiches- not an actual jam sandwich.

Ive never read the original chinese mythological tale, and maybe that makes me less offended. But surely the game has to have its own identity?

That does sound pretty cool. A more open world then the more linear actual game which could definitely not be a bad thing.

Blind Sight:

Ampersand:
I have a question.
Why do you seem to have a problem with men who are strong looking strong? Seriously you bring it up in almost every review.

Androphobia and a Napoleon complex?

That is one plausible explanation. Another is that a "strong" character in a video game tends to look like they've been doing nothing but lifting weights and taking anabolic steroids since puberty. Do bodybuilders look strong? Sure. They also look deformed.

As I believe this very column has demonstrated, coming up with great game ideas is easy; it's implementing them into an attractive, playable, and (dare I say?) fun games is hard. That said, there must be something between idea and implementation that takes all the good ideas (and as long as your idea isn't "fill-in-the-blank clone," it should be a good idea, it being so easy to think them up) and turns them inside out into insane and incomprehensible messes. So if ideas are easy, and implementation is hard, I guess that retaining the "good" essence of the ideas is incredibly difficult. But it does happen: see Portal as an example of a game that didn't let the implementation get in the way of an excellent idea (thankfully, the implementation itself was excellent, too). I think I'm using that word too much... Anyway.

Oyster^^:
In fact, I can't really think of too many games that you play as a robot. Clank I guess? Glitch from Metal Arms? There could be some cool stuff done with that. And most lead characters don't have any personality or fleshy vulnerability anyways, so there's no loss!

Mr. Robot, for one. It's a Moonpod game. You're trying to fix a colony ship to keep all the people alive and on their way towards whatever. At least, I think so -- it's been a while. It was a pretty good puzzle/platformer, if I recall correctly.

EDIT: Oh, I forgot about the JRPG-like battles when hacking systems. Yeah, that was a good game.

jetpacks = awesome
sometimes, except when the entire enemy team is using them against you in a certain game's online multiplayer

honestly, I loved the idea of Journey to the West the moment I read a line somewhere that this game was ish like that (but I was never interested in this game from the moment I saw pics/vids of it)

hi0marc:
The game is Inspired by JTTW. If it WAS jttw then the argument would be stronger. If i make a game branded "inspired by jam sandwiches" it will be related to jam sandwiches- not an actual jam sandwich.

Ive never read the original chinese mythological tale, and maybe that makes me less offended. But surely the game has to have its own identity?

Based on what I know of the game (previews, reviews, videos, since I haven't played it) it's more like "something like a dream I once had about maybe thinking about reading the Cliff's Notes on Journey to the West, but it was today in a big city, and also there were robots," by which I mean the word "inspired" is used in the loosest possible sense. Yahtzee's contribution was also "inspired" by the original, but in his case, the inspiration is much clearer for people who are familiar with the inspirational work yet still enjoyable and understandable for everyone else. It is true that in order to be inspired by a work, you don't have to stick scene-for-scene to the original (though you can, as Yahtzee suggested), but you do need to deal with the same major themes -- in this case, arrogance, humility, redemption -- in a similar way. You don't even have to have the same character names, that's simply the most superficial part of a story (and are the only parts that Enslaved seems to have retained).

I would totally play that game. that sounds awesome... an upgradable ass kicking robot who's only mission is to save the humanity that he learned to hate? If done right, that's a game of the year right there.

that happens to be called Tripitaka because fuck you.

Hahahah.

All this talk makes me wanna pick up Journey to the West and start reading.

God, I wish I had your talent for story writing.
You really love them space games don't you?

The very first time I heard about Journey to the West was from the TV movie, The Lost Empire (which I think was advertised as "The Monkey King" on the then-Sci-Fi Channel). Not long after, The Forbidden Kingdom came out, which furthered my interest in the source-material. I never got around to looking for the book, so I can't really say much about the story in question. (Maybe I'll see about it this weekend, and add it to the stack of books I start and never finish.)

While I haven't played Enslaved yet, I am aware of how less-than faithful the adaptation is, but I'm still wanting to play the game. That being said, I would totally want to see Yahtzee's made-up premise realized, just because it is more of an adaptation than Enslaved seems to be (although, Yahtzee's synopsis sounds an awful lot like Mass Effect, to me, what with the traveling to different worlds).

Nice story, Yahtzee. Doesn't mean that it'll be a nice game. What makes or breaks a game is the gameplay, not the story and/or setting.

As far as those two are concerned it sounds pretty good.

Casual Shinji:

Fronzel:

Okami shows that you can adapt mythology into a game without having to set it on the Planet of the Apes...

You should put this in a spoiler box.

Ok, then. Edited.

Self-aware robots is a plot mechanic, that have been used too many times, in my book. Even so, I won't hold it against the idea, but I WILL say that using robots (as interesting as it may sound in others' ears), depersonalize the characters and their development.
While I'm yet to get, what could be the metaphor for the trash robots, Enslaved is still more appealing to me.

I found it funny, how many of the elements in Croshaw's idea, reminded me of Metal Arms: Glitch in System.

i love you sir

Excuse me, Yahtzee, but explain to me why you are NOT a full-time game writer/producer? That was one of the best premises I've read/heard in quite a while. Bravo.

Am I the only person who was somewhat reminded of Wall-E when they read Yahtzee's idea?

While I like Yahtzee's idea, he missed one thing: The overall story of the original Journey West was about a Chinese monk going to India to bring back Buddhist writings to China (naturally, when they found the scrolls, they were blank.) So maybe something about going back to Earth to find the codes that make the colony ship become a colony. or something like that involving a long journey to acquire secret knowledge and bring it back home.

Btw: There is a Buddhist temple in Xian that, according to legend, is the place where Tripitaka and Monkey both began and ended their journey. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_Wild_Goose_Pagoda At least, that's what the tour guides tell westerners who have never heard of the Journey to the West anyway.

Ampersand:
I have a question.
Why do you seem to have a problem with men who are strong looking strong? Seriously you bring it up in almost every review.

There's "strong" and then there's "There is barely enough skin on this man to cover his muscles". There's a reason why this kind of makes the protagonist a tad sucky: just take a look at a bodybuilder or someone who has showy muscles... Sure looks dangerous, but he's not that strong because his muscles are less functional and more for display. A genuine fighting hero is far more likely to be built like, say, Jet Li.

Mr. Croshaw, your interpretation of the source material really does make Ninja Theory look like a horde of drooling idiots by comparison. I know you design games independently, but have you ever tried to break into the business of the big-budget productions? I'm sure there would be a few developers willing to give you a shot.

That idea actually sounds pretty good, though I'm not sure I would want Ninja Theory developing it.

It actually sounds like it has a fair bit in common with Mass Effect and it's ilk. Character driven storytelling, traveling a vast space world, gathering a team of other characters as the game goes on...

Journey to the west has already been made into a squillion games already, via toriyama's damn near endless dragonball (i'm not sure the monkey ever actually made it west) and its many many many many adaptions. A very loose, sort of scifi reworking it may be, but sounds a whole lot closer than Enslaved.

All the same, I'll throw my coin in the wishing well to say - yes, I'd give that game a punt. It sounds like a promising idea, particularly for something brewed up in a few moments for a magazine-website column. Not sure if it would be "play the shit out of" (though that was my initial sentiment), but it could be if it was any good.

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