El Shaddai: A​scension of the​ Metatron

El Shaddai a​scension of the​ metatron released for sony playstation 3 and xbox 360 consoles. Sawaki Takeyasu lead the game development for UTV Ignition games, he previously known as artist and character on Okami, Fatal Frame and Devil May Cry. El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron released
at 04-28-2011 in Japan and available in other country between August to September.

Gameplay

El Shaddai is a third-person action game featuring platform game elements, in which players control Enoch. Enoch wears holy armor that loses its pieces as the player takes damage, although it can be restored using hearts found by breaking objects. If the player is damaged when Enoch has no armor left, they are given a small amount of time to repeatedly push buttons to repair the armor before they have to restart at the last checkpoint.

Throughout the game, Enoch and the majority of his enemies utilise three weapon types; Arch, Gale, and Veil, each with their own strengths and weaknesses in and outside of combat. The Arch is a swift close range weapon which can perform quick combos and allows Enoch to descend slowly whilst jumping. The Gale is a long-range weapon that fires projectiles at enemies and allows Enoch to perform dashes over large gaps. Finally, the Veil is a slow but powerful weapon that can easily damage enemies and break certain objects that the other weapons can’t.

Enoch can retrieve these weapons by stealing them from enemies after they have taken enough damage or by taking them from icons found during platforming sections and boss battles. These weapons dull over time, requiring Enoch to purify them to restore their power, or steal a new weapon from an enemy. After a certain point in the game, Enoch will gain the assistance of the archangel Uriel and can activate ‘Overburst’ mode, increasing the power of Enoch’s attacks and allowing him to perform a special attack combo.

Plot and setting
The story is inspired by the apocryphal Book of Enoch, and follows Enoch (Shin-ichiro Miki/Blake Ritson), a scribe seeking seven fallen angels to prevent a great flood from destroying mankind. He is helped in his quest by Lucifel (Ryota Takeuchi/Jason Isaacs), a guardian angel in charge of the protection of the world who exists outside of the flow of time.

Development

El Shaddai began development in 2007 and was formerly known as Angelic: Ascension of the Metatron. A work in progress trailer featured different designs of the characters.

The game’s aesthetic is anime-styled, loosely drawing on sources such as Studio Ghibli. Enoch is a silent protagonist, as Takeyasu wanted to increase the connection between the player and Enoch.

El Shaddai was promoted with a trailer shown at the 2010 E3 press conference, as well as the Tokyo Game Show. It was met with strong feedback, which has been attributed to a line of dialogue spoken by Lucifel to Enoch: “You sure that’s enough armor?”. This quote earned first place of the Net Buzzword Awards 2010 Grand Prix in Japan. Despite the trend being the creator’s intention, it exceeded their expectations. Other than the game’s promotional movies, pre-release merchandise such as Edwin jeans and action figures were available for sale. Bandai also produced several figures of the game’s protagonist, which were featured in a Tamashii Features event in Akihabara, Osaka and Taipei

Player Reviews
darkzero: “It’s an engaging, exciting, fearless and endlessly imaginative masterpiece with a clarity of vision that is so, so rare in traditional big-budget releases”

the escapist: “A visually stunning game with simply fun action and challenging platforming, El Shaddai is only slightly marred by the death system and unoriginal mechanics.”

spaziogames: “Truly a masterpiece in terms of graphics and soundtrack, but loses itself when it comes to playing the game, especially the combat system too much limited. The story is quite interesting, it takes a lot of references from different religions, but the plot sometimes shows huge holes and characters without a background story.”

gameover.gr: “This obscure take on a legend of the Jewish religion has a remarkable art direction and some of the most beautiful graphics we’ve ever seen. Too bad the combat system is shallow and the overall gameplay doesn’t live up to the standards of the art department.”

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El Shaddai: A​scension of the​ Metatron | posted by ames.com | 4.5

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