Enslaved is a post-apocalyptic action adventure game retelling the classic 400-year old novel ‘Journey to the West’ by Wu Ch’eng-en, a collection of stories about the real-life journey of Hsuan Tsangof, a monk from the 7th century. Enslaved is developed by Ninja Theory, who also worked on Heavenly Sword for the PS3. Set 150 years into our future, the world has been ruined by war and ecological disaster with only a handful of survivors remaining. Enslaved is due for release in Fall/Winter 2010.
Players take on the role of Monkey, a strong and athletic, yet solitary figure, who has been captured by one of the mysterious slave ships, which harvest the remaining population and take them out west never to return. Trip, a technologically savvy young woman who has also been imprisoned by the same ship, manages to escape. She quickly realizes that Monkey, with his raw strength and power, is her only hope to survive the perilous journey back to her home. She hacks into a slave headband and fits it on Monkey, linking them together – if she dies, he dies… Her journey has now become his and Monkey must now travel west alongside Trip as they traverse a demolished world, under constant threat of capture and mortal peril.
- A Cinematic Masterpiece – Featuring dramatic cutscenes co-directed by Andy Serkis, (Lord of the Rings, King Kong) who also plays the lead role of Monkey, portraying critical events that drive the story of Monkey and Trip.
- Stunning Environments – Explore a beautiful, eerie world of war-ravaged cityscapes that have been reclaimed by nature and are fraught with danger at every turn.
- Tactical Gameplay – Survey the environment, work together with Trip and choose your path to battle through the perilous environmental and deadly enemy obstacles that await you on your journey.
- Engaging Storyline – Play through an original story co-written by famed novelist and screenwriter, Alex Garland, (The Beach, 28 Days Later), experience the evolving relationship between Monkey and Trip through their plight for survival.
- Dynamic Combat System – Attack and defend with agile prowess using a combination of melee attacks, blocks and intense takedowns which allow Monkey to overtake an enemy to steal its weapon for his own use, rip the enemy apart piece by piece or destroy it in one satisfying final blow.
Enslaved will inevitably be one of those games that are massively overlooked. It is also one of those games that I am looking forward to the most. Heavenly Sword is one of my favorite games on the PS3 so far but because it was overlooked and didn’t get the coverage it deserved it was not a commercial success. Had it been Heavenly Sword would have been the first in a trilogy as was originally planned. Because it failed Ninja Theory moved on to develop Enslaved. If the same level of attention that was used in Heavenly Sword is again focused on the characters, their relationships, the intense emotional storyline, motion capture and voice acting then Enslaved is bound to become another of my all-time favorites. It doesn’t matter to me if the gameplay is sub-par, the things I mentioned are what I think truly makes a great game. It is the depth of experience and the journey that a game can offer that matters most in my opinion. Overlooked or not, I will definitely be buying this game the day it is released.