Classics 6

Okami HD

It’s understandable why this game is so beloved, but it has all the hallmarks of a First Game; Ambitious, flawed, good ideas, bad execution. Absolutely recommended if you haven’t played it before.
Total Story Score: +4
Total Gameplay Score: +1
Golden Number: 13.09
Cheats: No
Total Play Time: 3 Days // 26.05 Hours
Time Reviewed: 8-27-2022

Spoiler Pluses and Minuses +

Story Positives:

  1. The opening cinematic is nicely stylized and ties into the game’s main strength
  2. The game is very stylized and creatively constructed… not just in the obvious ‘hand drawn’ way, but in how it moves, flows, animates, and little touches (the grass erupting at your feet, the ‘wind’ flowing through the sky) all creating a very unique and creative visual experience…
  3. …earning it two positives
  4. There’s a lot of memorable and interesting supporting NPCs throughout the first third of the game…
  5. …easily earning two positives
  6. Okay, I’ll admit it, the game is legitimately amusing
  7. The atmosphere and tone of the game is quite quirky
  8. The atmosphere is, similarly, very … well, myth
  9. The ‘final’ Orochi fight is honestly legit, a good epic ‘outro’…
  10. …further helped by Susano, who finally comes into his own and deserves his own positive for his arc throughout the first act
  11. There is a legitimately high quality of supporting NPCs throughout much of the game…
  12. …being both memorable and, albeit temporarily, interesting
  13. So let’s get this out of the way; the game is visually gorgeous. Ignoring any visual storytelling, the Brickwork on display is absolutely fantastic, and absolutely holds up to this day…
  14. …easily earning…
  15. …three positives
  16. Further, the way the game is animated isn’t just good, it’s well used, with characters clearly getting across tone and emotion despite the deformed style they’re presented in, and further there’s often animations going on just a bit ‘off focus’ which adds to most scenes…
  17. …earning…
  18. …three positives
  19. I love the way they use Ninetails; the fox that would be god, broken down bit by bit over the course of our interactions with them until they are nothing left but a tired old fox
  20. The spirit bomb moment of the Outro is legitimately enjoyable, with one caveat

Story Negatives:

  1. Intro is… not very engaging. It is very low key and meanders, heavily, between side characters and minor plot points, and generally just doesn’t engage, in addition to being very, very slow
  2. There is a very real Empty Text problem…
  3. …not the worst I’ve seen, but pretty bad
  4. This is related to the repetition problem that a lot of the dialogue has…
  5. …which is related to the repetition problem that a lot of dialogue has…
  6. …which is a shame given how much of a repetition problem that a lot of the dialogue has
  7. Issun starts off honestly pretty damned irritating
  8. Issun continues to be irritating
  9. The forced slow text is a nonstop aggravation throughout the entire game, dragging the Pacing to an absolute crawl in about half the cutscenes of the ENTIRE GAME…
  10. …earning it…
  11. …three negatives
  12. This is partially for Issun but the game’s insistence on talking up and focusing on the ‘sexay’ is just irritating
  13. The story sequencing is all over the place, with events often feeling completely disjointed from previous ones…
  14. …earning a second negative
  15. The Orochi refight sucks already for laziness (given how it just sort of repeats the same cutscenes with slightly different lines) but the way it diminishes everything makes it even worse
  16. Issun gets one final negative for his utterly unearned ‘redemption’ in the literal final boss fight

Gameplay Positives:

  1. Music is really quite enjoyable throughout…
  2. …earning two positives
  3. The core controls for movement and combat are reasonably good
  4. The implementation has issues but the core idea of the brush mechanic is an interesting gimmick
  5. The NPC dialogue indicators help with quest progression
  6. In-game hints on progression in the form of the bead indicators, fortune teller, and NPC dialogue
  7. Several minigames are pretty fun
  8. Animations are legitimately excellent, both helping with enemy attacks and general visuals…
  9. …earning a second positive
  10. I like the in game journal and story-thus-far
  11. Good, flashy viscerality
  12. Orochi’s lair is good when it’s good, being the first dungeon in the game I’d think is actually a dungeon
  13. The Orochi fight is actually legit; each head having their own gimmick, the variety of attacks, working in the drunk thing, fun stuff
  14. The entire sunken ship dungeon is honestly the best dungeon in the game so far, with neat gimmicks and creative enemies and puzzles
  15. While it’s minor, I do like the xp distribution system for leveling
  16. The shrunk ‘level’ was pretty good too
  17. Oni Island is pretty neat, with the race mini dungeons and the electricity gimmick
  18. The Ninetails fight is honestly pretty awesome, one of the better ones in the game
  19. The mad dash through the forest, with enough timer to do optional things but encouraging you not to stray too far, is actually pretty legit
  20. The enemy variety is excellent, introducing new enemies regularly and giving them slight variations on gimmicks and bonus kill methods…
  21. …earning two positives
  22. Combat itself is reasonably fun, if simple
  23. The game does a good job of keeping the variety up, helping with Pacing
  24. The game has pretty decent kit, between the brush attacks and the three types of weapons (which also each have a seperate alt fire mode as a secondary)
  25. The twin owls fight is, as per usual, actually pretty legit boss fight, with good pacing and good variety to it
  26. The Outro’s final boss fight is really cool, varied, and fun
  27. Good new game plus is, as always, a plus
  28. Reasonably smooth difficulty curve
  29. The guidance and flow of exploration, when it’s good, is good
  30. Game is reasonably well itemized, with what is accessible and when, as well as in money flow
  31. Mid-boss checkpoints

Gameplay Negatives:

  1. The game’s visuals are… legitimately painful to look at. There’s a ghosting on the models which can’t be turned off, and a constant blur which (you guessed it) cannot be turned off. This is legitimately awful visually…
  2. …earning a full…
  3. …three negatives
  4. For…
  5. …each…
  6. …issue
  7. The Tutorial is excessive and heavily railroaded
  8. This problem bleeds over into the Intro, which is just sort of… absent any real gameplay of note
  9. The drill down / drill up controls are inconsistent based on which screen you’re on
  10. The ‘stop the log’ sequence was irritating and had very inconsistent pixel hunting on top of an awful camera angle
  11. The save point placement is too spread out, especially given saves are it
  12. General inaccuracy of the painting gimmick
  13. Seconds-in-minutes problems abound… the sprinting (and general traversal), the painting, and the menuing
  14. The painting gimmick itself honestly completely kills the pacing of combat, made worse by how frequently the game expects/is balanced around you doing so
  15. Low health beedleep
  16. Repeat popups on consumable pickups
  17. The ball rolling segment of Orochi’s lair sucks
  18. The Kaguya digging minigame, in contrast to the previous ones, sucks. Dead ends, too precise of requirements for too imprecise of controls, and a strict timer
  19. Interrupting the music when brushing is another minor but constant irritant
  20. The penalty for failure in the final race in the Oni Island is actually awful, nevermind the platforming issues that entire section has thanks to wonky jumping physics
  21. Pacing: The entire sequence you have to go through to learn new abilities
  22. Most side quests in the game are either padding or irritating
  23. The Orochi refight is a negative for the usual refight issues
  24. The Orochi refights deserve their own negative for the sheer length of the fight
  25. Outro’s first part? Long, sloggy refights…
  26. …earning two negatives
  27. The Outro’s final boss fight is too long for what it is, with long invuln phases and way too much hp (draining what otherwise would have been a good hyperbeam moment)
  28. Camera is a PS2 camera, aka not great
  29. The guidance and flow of exploration, when it’s bad, is ‘where the hell am I going?’
  30. The ‘voice acting’ causes some… issues, especially considering the two worst ones talk the most