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Okami (PS2)


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Certainly one of the most stylish, if not beautiful...

 

The Okami (Wolf) trailer was just released, and is simply breathtaking:

 

http://www.cloverstudio.co.jp/img/movie/okami_jpn.mpg

 

From IGN:

 

The first original title from Capcom's Clover Studio -- headed up by Viewtiful Joe producer Atsushi Inaba. Okami takes place in a time when people still believed in the existence of God. The world has become a lifeless place, as shown in the game's use of Hokusai-style Japanese woodblock print visuals. Playing as Ama Terasu, a sun god who takes on the form of a wolf, your goal is to bring life back to the world. Bringing life back to the world involves defeating lots of beasts. With each beast you defeat, the world's life force is restored just a bit, with colors and eventually people appearing. Famitsu reveals two of the game's main beasts, the Ama no Jyaku and the Nue. Ama no Jyaku has the ability to peep on what others are thinking and disturbs them by doing the opposite of what they want. Nue, meanwhile, gains strength with every sip of the alcohol that he carries with him.

 

I'm still not sure what it'll play like, but I think it's supposed to be action/adventure somewhat like Zelda. With Capcom bringing it to Europe, we'll hopefully see a release in North America next year as well.

 

There are some nice screenshots here:

 

http://www.cloverstudio.co.jp/title/okami/okami_pic01.html

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P.S. I'm not sure what the theme of the game is either, but the title of the game is interesting play on words. "Okami" can mean wolf, but also "god." The kanji featured in the title screen represent the latter. The kanji for wolf is something entirely different. Amaterasu is the goddess of the sun and the primary deity of Shinto.

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Okami finally confirmed for a US release!

 

http://ps2.ign.com/articles/611/611212p1.html

 

It looks like the much-anticipated Japanese title, Okami, has finally been announced for North America. Developer Clover Studios has put up a new page on their site that says that Okami will be playable on the show floor at E3. With its beautiful style that is already making fans in the states, Okami is definitely a title that will be worth watching for a release in North America.
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Great news!

 

Also, Clover Studio's Japanese website says they will have a special E3 page for the game on May 19.

http://www.cloverstudio.co.jp/index.html

 

Unfortunately, still no release date announced yet. I want this game now!

 

There's also some new Okami wallpaper on the site - very nice, reminds me of Yoshitaka Amano's work:

http://www.cloverstudio.co.jp/gallery/wall/wall09.html

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Gamespot has posted some new gameplay movies of Okami's gameplay:

 

http://www.gamespot.com/ps2/adventure/okami/media.html

 

Particularly interesting is seeing the "celestial brush" mechanic Atsushi Inaba mentioned in this 1up.com interview in action - it looks like something that would be a natural fit on the DS, but not so much the PS2. I wonder if it will be controlled by the analog stick?

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I just downloaded a whole bunch of movies from the E3 demo of this game. Sweet mother of god, does this look good! I've been somewhat disappointed (though not really surprised) that we haven't heard anything about a Viewtiful Joe 3 yet, but if the team at Clover can make this one work, I probably won't miss it. I'm a sucker for a game with excellent cel-shading, and this one seems to be taking the idea to a whole new level. I cannot wait to try this one out!

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I have to admit, I'm a little depressed right now. This evening I stopped in at GameStop to pick up a copy of Conker for Xbox, and while I was there, I decided to place a preorder for Okami and Shadow of the Colussus. To my amazement, I was the very first person to place a preorder for Okami at this particular store.

 

Granted, my own experience at one GameStop in the Twin Cities metro area can't tell you how well a game may or may not sell, but the fact that no one has bothered to reserve a copy of this yet, worries me. I'd hate to see this game get overlooked this holiday season in much the same way another great Clover Studios title, Viewtiful Joe 2, was overlooked last holiday season.

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There's a new trailer out, the first I have seen for the US version. It looks as breathtaking as ever, if not more so.

 

http://www.gametrailers.com/gamepage.php?id=867

(trailer 5)

 

The Official Japanese website has been active for a while too. Very nice, with little hidden itneractive elements. http://www.o-kami.jp/

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IGN has a hands on report with the Japanese version of Okami.

 

Our canine friend is very much like an ordinary wolf, though the blazing sun disc that's latched onto his back makes him a little different. The way that Amaterasu moves, attacks and behaves is similar to that of a real-life animal. If he runs long distances, he'll eventually pick up more speed, and if you leave him alone, he'll eventually sit down and take a nap. These canine tendencies also play a part in making the game much more entertaining, and often make for some comedic moments. In fact, despite the game's artsy look, it doesn't take itself too seriously and often pokes fun at the fact that the protagonist isn't particularly interested in saving the world. After all, he's a wolf. What more can you expect from him?

 

The action takes place from a third-person perspective, and the camera is fully movable in most situations (small confines use a fixed camera angle). You can think of the game as being split up into two different parts: adventure and action. When he's not battling enemies, Amaterasu can run around, use a head butt to break or open objects, and pick up various items around him. Battle, on the other hand, is totally different. When you encounter an enemy, the playing field decreases dramatically, and you are automatically thrust into combat with several enemies. While fighting, your head-butt changes to slashes, and so on. While it's disappointing that there isn't a seamless transition from exploring to battles, it's an understandable decision; the smaller arena makes fights more intensive, and honestly, if you can't run away from a fight, it makes it all the more exciting.

 

The first half hour of the game may be a little on the tedious side, as the introduction is not skippable, and the tutorial is a tad too long, but once that's done and over with, the pacing of the game picks up and becomes much more enjoyable. After clearing the tutorial, your first order of business will be to beautify a small village near your starting point. By completing a couple of fetch quests, you'll be able to progress quickly into new territory that features more enemies and dangers.

 

Sounds good. I only wish that this was coming out sooner. I put money down on a preorder almost a year ago already.

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When in the hell IS it out? (in the US) Just skipping back through the thread and there I am claiming it to be my most anticipated game of 2005, now it's one of my most anticipated for 2006... It's seems to be taking so long that at this rate it wouldn't surprise me if I am touting it as one of my most anticipated games of 2007.

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