Ōkami HD Review

We were first introduced to Amaterasu the Sun Goddess and her watercolour world six years ago (or five for those of us in the UK), with the release of Ōkami on PS2. It was a game noted for its beauty and innovative design; players had the power to affect their environment with a simple brushstroke, from making a tree blossom to inking a sun in the sky. Mastering the Celestial Brush was the only way in which Amaterasu could hope to defeat the dragon demon Orochi and bring peace to Nippon.

Explore the vast, colourful landscapes of Nippon

With its compelling story, stunning visuals and having garnered numerous awards*, it was only a matter of time before Ōkami became Ōkami HD. Downloadable via the Playstation Network, this glorious rendition of the PS2 classic gives fans a chance to revisit the sumi-e-style adventure, and newcomers the opportunity to start with all the benefits of a remastered version.

Ōkami HD is proof that the title was always destined for 1080p. Outlines are noticeably sharper, colours bolder, and the game’s luminescence has intensified to dreamlike proportions. In particular, the first few minutes of play during which you enter the River of the Heavens does feel like a lucid dream, while you dot the final star on a constellation and paint stardust into a shimmering river.  

There are 13 Celestial Brush Techniques to master, each granting you a different power

Additionally, with the game’s PS Move compatibility, there is the option to play in a more ‘hands-on’ fashion (similar to that of the Nintendo Wii version released in 2008). This feature elevates gameplay to a whole new level of interaction, and there’s no denying the satisfaction of swiping your hand from left to right and seeing the on-screen brush cleave a boulder in two.

That said, it is just as enjoyable playing the old-fashioned way with a DualShock controller. However you choose to play, Ōkami HD’s main appeal lies in its rejuvenation of the original’s luscious graphics and the novelty of replaying an old favourite on a current-gen console. Of course, the Trophies (easy to obtain but rewarding nonetheless) are an added bonus.

In short, fans will love the glossy nostalgia trip and new players the diverse experience the game has to offer so there’s really no excuse not to get your paws on a copy! Summon your strength, ready your brush, and prepare to indulge in the rich spectacle that is Ōkami HD. 

 

* Okami World

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