Published on September 4th, 2011 | by Kyle Spencer, Editor
El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron Review
Platform: Xbox 360 [Reviewed], PlayStation 3
Developer: Ignition Tokyo
El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron is an interesting game. I played the game having mixed feelings. In one hand I thought the game was shaky, ugly and featured a broken combat system. In the other hand El Shaddai took a unique opportunity to make an interesting game that featured an in depth story line, and interesting concept, along with art. On the surface, the game was taking a Deadly Premonition approach without the horror. What I mean by “Deadly Premonition approach” is that the game has an interesting premise and great concept, just poor execution.
The story of El Shaddai is a story that revolves around the Book of Enoch, an ancient Jewish script, featuring descriptions of nebulous events and it’s characters. The has a decent story line, however the story is told randomly. It seems that the story is never fluid and remains on a consistent path. The story is jumbled and just told poorly, as interesting as the story is.
El Shaddai is a third person, hack and slash game that features a weak combo system, and tried to take some ideas from other games such as Devil May Cry and Bayonetta. The combos are simple button presses, and you can honestly mas the light attack button over and over again and achieve a high hit counter. The game also allows you to take other weapons from enemies and you them against the enemies. However, the game only features three different weapons, all of which do not change in appearance or attacks. There is no variety.
Visually the game has a unique and note worthy attempt at something different. Unfortunately the art style did not work for this game. With a game that features a huge degree of action, it seemed that the art style never seemed to be able to catch up with the games action. some of the games environments do look great and leave you with a good feeling about the game, however it is not as superior as other games that feature unique art styles like “Child of Eden”. The characters are very poorly designed and it seems that the enemies only change was their color.
Sadly enough the game, which was said to feature a unique combo system has no visual HUD. So if you are looking to see your health, enemies, and combos you are out of luck. The HUD is virtually empty but at the same time if gives you direct focus to the game itself and leaves very little clutter.
The Final Truth:
El Shaddai was a very interesting game to play through. It was a unique endeavor, unfortunately it was a costly one. At a retail price of $59.99, I feel that this game should have cost what Deadly Premonition did at it’s release–$19.99. This game will be in the bargain bins very soon, and as interesting as the story may have been, it is way to jumbled to get a firm grasp as to what was going on. It has a unique art style that has some high points, but sadly the characters and animations were horrendous. I applaud Ignition for taking on a different kind of story driven game, just better execution and the game could have been much better.
+ Unique art style
+ Good stab at a very interesting story
– Very poor execution
– Weak combo system
– NO HUD
– Horrible character art style and animations