El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron

Ty September 27th, 2011 at 8:52 am

Every so often, a game comes along that embraces the developer’s artistic visions. These types of games usually gain instant attention from the gaming industry since they offer something beautiful and different to a growing pile of inevitable remakes and sequels.

At first glance, El Shaddai is indeed one of these games. But will it go down as a classic, or is it destined for a less favorable fate? Read on to find out.

The Review

EL SHADDAI is a game that checks almost all the boxes, but just misses out on one pretty vital aspect.

The story follows an almost Biblical plot – seven angels have fallen from Heaven and it’s up to Enoch to scale the unholy tower of Babel these angles have place on Earth. Inside is room after room of abstract visuals and puzzles.

Visually, the game is an artistic feast that takes the idea of HD gaming to new levels. There’s no HUD in this game, meaning you’ll have to actually look at weapons to judge their attributes, and pay close attention to enemies. Enemy battles are particularly satisfying, if a little difficult to understand at first. The use of the weapon colours rather than a menu system is a bold move, and one that, quite frankly, more developers should be using when you consider the potential of today’s modern High Definition consoles.

Unfortunately, the game feels a little generic when it comes to actually playing through. Puzzles are stock standard platform hopping and the like, akin to many third person action titles of the 90’s. You wont be losing sleep over much of the game’s puzzles, though it’s a perfect example of how high quality, artistic games can cater for the newer “casual” audience. Sadly, the overall premise and execution of the game doesn’t scream this fact, and thus may not be fully appreciated by all.

That said, the game’s art direction is what keeps you engaged as you can’t wait to see what comes next. And like most artistic feats of the modern age, you’ll either love or misunderstand this game; either way, it’s well worth a try to find out!

[Why is this review so short?]

El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron
About our scores
You'll either love or misunderstand this game. Either way, it's well worth a try.
  • + Beautiful design
  • + Bold new ideas
  • + Different
  • - Can be easy
  • - Linear
  • - Takes some getting used to

Ty is the founder, Editor-in-Chief and nice guy of The first console Ty owned as a kid was the Sega Master System II which he used to enjoy games like Alex Kidd, Sonic the Hedgehog and Mickey Mouse. Since the early days, Ty's hobby became an obsession and over the years he has amassed a huge collection of video games from all manufacturers. You can read Ty's weekly opinion column here, and follow him on Twitter.

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