El Shaddai

El Shaddai

El Shaddai is one of those games that make me feel like I missed an important point somewhere and after that very few things in the game make any sense anymore.

From the looks of it, it is some sort of Devil May Cry/God of War-style brawler with platform elements and really trippy graphics. The platform elements mesh really poorly with said trippy graphics and the times you die it is because of wobbly jumping controls and  really odd perspectives. The brawling fares somewhat better and is pretty fun in the beginning, but there are really few enemies, even fewer attacks and all arenas are circular and empty so it doesn’t really give the sense of it being a core feature.

The graphics are very odd, change every so often and use more than a few techniques I have never seen in the context of games before – this was actually the only reason I got the game in the first place. Some of it is pretty cool, but the effects that feel really innovative create such weird results that it is hard to see it begin used for something other than surreal landscapes.

I am honestly not sure what to think about the game – it found it to be a decent diversion, but considering the staggering amount of good games released lately “decent diversion” doesn’t really cut it. There is that lingering feeling that I don’t really get what it’s about though, and I am hesitant to talk down a game that just wasn’t meant for me to begin with. I never did have the patience to do deep analysis of fighting games, but the system in El Shaddai seems to be too simple and easy to beat to offer any depth. The psychedelic and fluid art style and bizarre story elements are certainly welcome experimentation, but they are more weird than impressive.

Still, I don’t know. Maybe the point was to provide an abstract game with a familiar base – if so, I can think of no better examples.

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Posted on Nov 20/11 by Saint and filed under Reflections | No Comments »