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Okami

TGS: Okami, third time, charm, etc.

Sep 20 // Conrad Zimmerman
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I don't know how many times I can play Okami and come up with something to say without feeling like I'm repeating myself. I played it on the PS2, then again on the Wii, and today I played it on the PS3 in its latest inca...

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Okami HD dated for PlayStation Network in North America


Sep 19
// Jordan Devore
The week of Tokyo Game Show seems like a perfectly fine time for Capcom to announce the release date of Okami HD, so here goes: it's headed to PlayStation Network on October 30, 2012 in North America. Given its wonderful art ...
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New footage of Okami HD to wet your brush over


Aug 14
// Conrad Zimmerman
As part of their Gamescom press event this morning, Capcom showed this new gameplay video for Okami HD. It's been a while since I played Okami, but I'm fairly certain that this is within the first couple hours of the game be...
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Storm's Adventures: Storm is turning Japanese...Literally


May 19
// Storm Dain
おめでとう、あなたはこの記事を翻訳している。可能性がGoogleの使用に。今私は、いくつかの段落に、この外にドラッグができれば。素晴らしい、段落番号2つの。た...
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Capcom producer wants God Hand, Okami sequels


Apr 27
// Dale North
And so are we! Okamiden producer Motohide Eshiro says Capcom listens to fan demand, and if enough demand is there, Okami and God Hand could get sequels.  Eshiro told Gamesradar: "We’re certainly willing to explore ...
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Got money? Okamiden plushes and pillows now available


Apr 07
// Tony Ponce
If you attended PAX East this year (I didn't, darnit!), you might have noticed some adorable Okamiden swag for sale. Well, Capcom has taken the remaining items from that first-run batch and made them available through their o...

Review: Okamiden

Mar 15 // Jonathan Holmes
Okamiden (DS)Developer: CapcomPublisher: CapcomReleased: March 15, 2011MSRP: $29.99 Choosing which game to put a console on is a lot like matching two breeds of dog. Breed a Dead Rising dog with the Xbox 360, and you get the original Dead Rising. Breed the same game-dog with the Wii, and you get Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop. Though both of those games have one parent in common, anyone who has played them both will tell you that they are two very different animals. The same can be said of Okami and Okamiden. The breeding of the Okami concept with the DS hardware has resulted in a game with very different strengths and weaknesses than the PS2 original -- sometimes for better, and sometimes for worse. The game takes place less than a year after the original Okami, which technically makes it a chronological sequel, though in practice, a lot of the game is recycled from the first title. Just as in Okami, you play as a wolf who's tasked with ridding ancient Japan of demonic impurities. This time around, though, you are Chibiterasu, a puppy with god-like powers who may or may not be the direct offspring of Amaterasu, the wolf goddess of Okami. The game features a slightly smaller replica of the overworld from Okami, but with new dungoens to explore, new (and old) people to meet, and new (and old) techniques to master. It's these techniques, and how they are implemented, that best take advantage of the DS hardware. Like with Okami, Okamiden arms you with the "celestial brush," a magical implement that allows you to freeze time and draw onto the game world as though it were a Japanese ink painting. The brush provides you with most of your in-game tools; it's used for both for combat and puzzle solving. This is the first time that the celestial brush has really felt perfect. With the PS2, it was very precise, but seemed unnatural and stiff. On the Wii, the pointer controls allowed for much more fluidity, but sacrificed the tactile connection, making the controls too loose and unwieldy for some. On the DS, it's truly the best of both worlds. Slicing enemies in half, bringing cherry trees to full bloom, and all of the various other functions of the celestial brush have never been so tactilely gratifying to perform, yet still fluid and organic. It stands to reason that a touchscreen-enabled version of a game about drawing would be a good fit, but it's still worth noting that Capcom has done an excellent job porting this unique concept to less powerful hardware.  They've also done a great job introducing new gameplay elements to the Okami formula. Most of these new gameplay ideas come packaged with the small group of children who will work as your partners throughout the game -- a team of tykes who like Chibiterasu, and may or may not be the direct offspring of characters first introduced in Okami. These children work with Chibiterasu in a manner not dissimilar to Link and Zelda's teaming up in The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks. Using the touchscreen and the D-pad, you often need to control both characters at once, which is a lot more fun and a lot less confusing that it might sound. You meet various new kids along the way, each with their own distinct abilities and storylines. The abilities of these children, and the way that their lives weave into each other, is the main thing that sets Okamiden apart from its predecessor. I don't want to give them away, but suffice to say that there are a few twists that lead to Okamiden feeling like a very different game than Okami, at least for a little while. Okamiden's storyline feels much more based on anecdotes and seemingly incidental characters. Just as Chibiterasu is not yet an epic and powerful god, his story does not seem as epic and powerful in nature -- at least at first. Instead, his tale focuses more on the smaller, sweeter, more sentimental moments of the world of ancient Japan. If you weren't expecting some saccharine stuff -- or at the very least, occasional bouts of cuteness -- from Okamiden, you might need to get your eyes checked. This game doesn't star a puppy for nothing. While this focus on minutiae lends itself to a more intimate, sentimental story, it also opens up the flood gates for one of the more abhorrent game design tropes out there: the fetch quest. Okami had its share of fetch quests, too, but they seem to be plentiful in Okamiden. You get to know many little incidental characters, and they each have some little incidental task to put you on. It can get a little grating, although many of them pay off in the end. The same goes for the game's many unskippable text-based cut-scenes. They are generally pretty painful to sit through at first, but most of them end up paying off in either a laugh, a clever bit of dialog, or some form of grandeur. It all comes down to the fact that the game is consistently likable, even when it goes a little off track. With any less charm, I don't think Okamiden could have survived all its wordy cutscenes and random collection-based tasks. One aspect of the game that I'll never have any affection for is the camera. It's controlled on the touchscreen, which just doesn't work. The only reason the game's mix of touch and button/pad controls works is because when you activate the celestial brush, time freezes. That means you can safely take your thumbs off the buttons, grab your stylus, and start drawing. The same can't be said of the game's camera controls. You often need to manipulate the camera in real time during combat, which means you you have to take your hands off the buttons and touch the bottom screen with your filthy mitts. It's a huge design flaw that really takes you out of the game. Thankfully, a fair amount of the new-style battles in the game take place from a fixed, overhead camera angle, in the style of old-school Legend of Zelda. These battles are either relegated to boss battles, or mid-dungeon, button-mashing filler, which is a shame. I actually would have preferred it if the whole game were played from a fixed camera angle. It's better than the alternative, which is the semi-broken adjustable camera that most of the game employs. The graphics and sound are very well done. There is a little bit of slowdown here and there, and the load times between screens feel a little long at times, but it's all worth it to see how close Capcom came to replicating Okami on the DS. The game is undoubtedly a technical achievement, though it's a shame that many of the actual visual ideas here are recycled from Okami. The music is also excellent, if not overly familiar. I'm not certain, but it certainly feels like most of the tracks here were taken directly from Okami. Like with the graphics, it's hard to get really excited about how great Okamiden's music is when you've already heard it so many times before. Like I said before, Okamiden exudes charm, perhaps even more so than the original. Unfortunately, charm will only get you so far. The game rarely reaches the same level of technical excellence as its predecessor, which is a shame, given that there are a few areas where Okamiden actually outdoes the original. It's just too bad that the game doesn't have more new content to help set itself apart from the "real" Okami. The good news is, most of the game's shortcomings will be less noticeable to those who've never played an Okami game before. It's a shame that Okamiden didn't come first. If not for the fact that it's standing in the shadows of one of the best games ever made, Okamiden would look a lot more brilliant. As it stands, this half-port, half-sequel does an admirable job of making the best of the DS's hardware, but doesn't quite have the originality or the technical polish to live up to its godly lineage.
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Okami is a beloved cult classic, but the game failed to meet sales expectations when it was first released on the PS2 back in 2006. Capcom recently stated that they believe that the game undersold because it was released so c...

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New Okamiden trailers charm the savage soul


Dec 14
// Jonathan Holmes
Capcom just released a few new trailers showing off characters from the upcoming DS title Okamiden. The focus here is on some of the game's characters who are returning from the original Okami. In the video above, we have Sa...
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Okamiden face mug is absolutely too much


Nov 10
// Jim Sterling
Seriously, I can't take the cute anymore! Capcom has gone too far. As if the plushy wasn't bad enough, now there's a special mug that will make every coffee break far too adorable for its own good. It features the ever-s...
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NYCC: Chibiterasu found!


Oct 09
// Dale North
Remember how the little Okamiden pup was lost here at New York Comic-Con? I found it!
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NYCC: New Okamiden art and screenshots


Oct 06
// Conrad Zimmerman
In celebration of New York Comic-Con this weekend, Capcom has released a veritable cornucopia of screenshots for Okamiden along with a few beautiful pieces of art. The screenshots are aimed at showing Chibiterasu's partn...
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TGS: Hands-on with the technically awesome Okamiden


Sep 18
// Jonathan Holmes
I'm a dick. I've had so many opportunities to play Okamiden this year, but I've yet to get to it. Part of that is because playing a DS game on a big event's show floor is pretty painful. With flashing lights and cosplay and g...
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TGS: Three minutes of Okamiden goodness, new images


Sep 16
// Nick Chester
While not in the hands of original Okami developer Clover Studios, Capcom's upcoming Okamiden for Nintendo DS looks like it's going to be a worthy successor.  The game picks up as a sequel to the original, following the...
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Okamiden gameplay footage is predictably adorable


Aug 19
// Conrad Zimmerman
Capcom released this gameplay footage of Okamiden yesterday and it's pretty much the cutest thing I've seen this week. Chibiterasu is just so pudgy and I love watching him scamper around. The video shows a little bit of...
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Puppies and J-Pop combine in this Okamiden trailer


Aug 07
// Jonathan Holmes
I felt bad for all the DS games at E3 2010, especially Okamiden. How could any DS title possibly follow the unveiling of the 3DS? It just wasn't fair. I hope that Okami fans (all 200,000 or so of you) are still willing to bu...
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Adorable and terrifying Okamiden papercraft


Jul 30
// Conrad Zimmerman
Papercraft scares me. The whole prospect of it is intimidating, even without my stupid fingers to clumsy things up. Delightful as the photos of finished products wind up being, thinking about what a torn mess the ones I make ...
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Okami DS Collector's Edition is insane, cute


Jul 15
// Dale North
Wow! Look at all this stuff you get with the "Legendary Edition" of Okamiden. Japanese gamers will nab this insane collection of Okami goods for the 8,000 yen ($90) asking price. Inside the lovely collector's box you'll find ...
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Awww: Adorable Okami/Okamiden statues


Jul 08
// Jordan Devore
You don't need to have an appreciation for Okami, Okamiden, or even cel-shadery to get a kick out of these sweet statues. Crafted by Tomopop user Somakun, this lovely pair was entered into the Anime Expo 2010 Art Show -- I th...
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DO WANT this Okamiden plush Chibiterasu


Jul 01
// Conrad Zimmerman
My fiancée and I are rarely go to bed at the same time. I usually roll in there about ten or twelve hours after she does because of our work schedules. That's not really a problem, except that she's taken to curling up...
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El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron is far from the religious games of old, nor does it have anything to do with the Amy Grant song of the same name. And I should know, as growing up in a religious household, I was more th...

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Okamiden producer: Not a sequel, a 'spiritual successor'


Apr 20
// Nick Chester
With Clover studios having disbanded, some thought they'd never see a proper follow up to its 2006 PlayStation 2 classic, Ōkami. Ōkamiden, Capcom's upcoming Nintendo DS title set in the Ōkami universe, may just...
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No current plans for iPhone/iPad versions of Okamiden


Apr 20
// Nick Chester
Ōkamiden seems like the perfect fit for the Nintendo DS, with its "Celestial Brush" mechanic that has players using the stylus to draw strokes in the game world to affect the environment and combat. It would also, many w...

Okamiden coming to North America, first hands-on

Apr 20 // Nick Chester
[embed]171499:29223[/embed] Ōkamiden follows the adventures of Chibiterasu, the young sun god offspring of Amaterasu, the now iconic wolf from the original Ōkami. Being a child, the ludicrously adorable little wolf cub simply doesn’t have the power of his older, stronger, and wiser parent. Because of this, in Ōkamiden he’ll need assistance, which comes in the form of a number of in-game characters which can be directed using the Nintendo DS touch-screen and stylus. In the trial version I played, the partner character on hand was Kumi, son of the arrogant, self-proclaimed warrior Susano from the first title. With Kumi on his back, I was able to move Chibiterasu around a gorgeous, hand-drawn-style 3D world displayed on the top screen by using the d-pad. Attacks are all mapped to a single button (which can be pressed repeatedly to string together combos), coupled with a jump button to further navigate obstacles. It wasn’t long before the game introduced how it uses the Celestial Brush, the bread-and-butter game mechanic of the series. By pressing L or R, a “canvas” version of the world moves down from the top to the touch screen. It’s here that you use the stylus as the brush in a way that you might already be familiar with from Ōkami. Circle a naked spot on a tree to make flowers bloom, cleave a stone in half to clear a path, or draw in an empty spot on a bridge to allow forward movement. The canvas can also be used in combat, stopping time and slicing multiple foes with one long brush stroke. But the Nintendo DS touch screen isn’t used only for the obvious Celestial Brush mechanic. Ōkamiden introduces a “Partner System” which allows players to guide teammates through obstacles and to solve puzzles. In the case of the trial, pressing X makes Kumi hop off Chibi’s back. By then using the Celestial Brush to draw a path (it appears as a red stroke), you’re able to direct your partner character through the world. This can be used in a number of ways, the most obvious to trigger switches in the environment to solve environmental puzzles. In one, I had to direct Kumi across a cracked path, too weak to support the heavier Chibi; there he stood on a switch that created a bridge which Chibi could cross to a raised platform. I then had to guide Kumi to yet another switch which create one more bridge, allowing Chibi to move forward and join the young adventurer once again. Partners will also act intelligently, opening chests and returning items when guided with no additional instructions. While these are some of the simplest examples, it’s easy to see how this guidance system can lead to some clever (and likely mind-bending) puzzles further into the game. While much of the world of Ōkamiden will look at feel familiar, producer Motohide Eshiro notes that just because it’s based in the same world, that doesn’t mean you’re simply treading old ground. In addition to new areas, the game will feature some of the same settings from the original, with all new buildings and other places to explore. The game’s enemies, “Yokai” or demons inspired by Japanese mythology, may also look familiar as many are back and causing trouble in Ōkamiden. But each has been redesigned for the Nintendo DS, giving them a fresh look, and they will also be joined by a host of new demons in the final game. Sound great? It kind of is, and this is coming from a pretty big fan of the original. (And who isn’t?) There’s a catch -- Ōkamiden won’t hit North American shelves until 2011. Yes, that 2011. As in next year. The wait should be worth it, as Eshiro is aiming for more than roughly 20 hours of gameplay in Ōkamiden.
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Fans of things that are good should be pleased to learn that Capcom is bringing Ōkamiden, the Nintendo DS follow-up to the PlayStation 2/Wii title Ōkami, to North America. It shouldn’t come as a surprise, as ...

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Ep. 4 of The Journalism Show once again lacks journalism


Apr 10
// Matthew Razak
While it pains me slightly to post this because it means Topher Cantler, a man cooler than the other side of the pillow, is not, I must. Episode 4 of The Journalism Show is here and the people need to know! In this episode G...
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Okamiden trademarked for US (hooray!)


Feb 17
// Jim Sterling
Good news for those longing to hear about a North American Okamiden release. Capcom has recently trademarked the game in the United States, all but confirming that the DS sequel to Okami will be hitting the land of the round ...
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Hideki Kamiya, director of Devil May Cry, Viewtiful Joe, Okami, and Bayonetta should be feeling pretty good right now. Bayonetta was one of best selling games in Japan this year, and chances are it will also do pretty well in...

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New Okamiden trailer is ZOMG SO CUTE!


Nov 26
// Jim Sterling
So far, Capcom has been rather stingy when it comes to showing footage of Okami sequel Okamiden in action. Fortunately, that miserly attitude has been made up for with a nice three-minute trailer that looks absolutely bloody...
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Okami Vans will make your jaw drop


Oct 01
// Colette Bennett
Um ... COOL. That is all I can say about these Okami-themed Vans, which are the latest project from the fine peeps over at Kyozo Kicks. Not only are the shoes beyond awesome, but I really like the sentiments in the artist's m...
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TGS 09: Prepare your envy for this sweet Okamiden fan


Sep 24
// Colette Bennett
I've been a sucker for Okami's art style since the very first time I laid eyes on it, and while all I personally own from the game is the beautiful official artbook, I've always hoped to get my hands on more.  I had inte...
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TGS 09: Okamiden debut trailer is full of cute


Sep 24
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Okay, Okamiden, stop being so cute! No, I take that back! Hurt me with your cuteness.Yeah, so Okamiden is ridiculously cute. Chibiterasu, the main wolf pup hero works together with a human kid in the trailer as they take on b...

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