Okamiden Review
Okamiden Box Art
System: DS
Dev: Capcom
Pub: Capcom
Release: March 15, 2011
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: N/A

Partners were also useful in battle. Susano's son flies off of Chibi to attack enemies from afar. A rather angry young actress throws fans off in all directions. Some partners have powers over elements that can be used to stun certain enemies, leaving them open for a solid beat down. It makes the standard combat—which was perhaps a bit dull in Okami—a little more interesting.

The side quests in Okamiden are much rarer than they were in its predecessor, which is to be expected since it's a handheld game. Still, there are quite a few hidden treasure chests to root out, which is a nice diversion. I love an excuse to explore every bit of the map. One thing that can make this difficult, however, is the camera. Since the shoulder buttons are used to freeze time so that players can use the Celestial Brush, the only way to control the camera is to hit the arrows on the map, located on the touch screen. It's not convenient. Most of the time the camera does a good job getting behind Chibi on its own, but there were a few times when its failure caused me to run into a baddie that I didn't feel like fighting. During combat, a time where it's essential to be able to see the things you want to see, camera problems are even worse.

Okamiden Screenshot

The music in Okamiden is once again pleasant enough to listen to all day and appropriate for each environment. The sound effects work well (especially Chibi's adorable little bark), and although many found the computer-generated noises that were in place of voice acting in Okami to be annoying, I don't expect voice acting in a DS game.

One thing people complain about in Wii and DS games are the graphics. It's true—Nintendo sacrificed visual quality for innovation. Of course, the best way to combat this flaw is with more innovation. One of the best things about Okami and Okamiden is their style. Like Twilight Princess, these games manage to look just as impressive as any PS3/PSP game by wielding a beautiful artistic style that makes us wonder why we ever cared about realism. Capcom put the same effort into making Okamiden look like it was entirely painted by a master Japanese artist as they did in Okami, plus it's more adorable with all the baby animals. This style carries over into the writing, which maintains the same Japanese humor and dynamic characters. The plot is of course still steeped in ancient Japanese lore, giving it a level of depth that many games lack. Okamiden, like its parent, is full of charm.

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I would love to give Okamiden a "must buy" score, but I can't tell anyone that they have to buy a game if they can go out and buy one that's essentially the same, only better. However if you have a DS and enjoyed Okami, Okamiden would be a great addition to your collection. It will provide you with many hours of genuine fun, which can be hard to find in a handheld game. I highly recommend that DS owners play Okamiden. That is, if you can tear yourself away from your new Pokémon game.

By Lindsey Weedston
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.8
Graphics
Who needs realistic pores when you can have a Japanese work of art to play in?
4.2
Control
Mostly smooth, with a few camera issues. They also weren't as fun as in the original game, even if they were more precise.
4.5
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Generally pleasing, and the weird little noises in place of voices are more understandable on this platform.
3.5
Play Value
Although very fun, this game loses major points for too much recycled content.
4.3
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • The touch screen and stylus of the Nintendo DS are the ideal tools to simulate Okamiden's trademark celestial brush. The stylus brushstrokes are pressure sensitive, which helps to accurately depict the look and feel of Sumi-e artwork.
  • Using the in-game Partner System, players can join forces with new characters in the game, each possessing unique abilities that will help Chibiterasu defeat enemies and conquer puzzles.
  • The beauty of the highly stylized Japanese calligraphy and scroll paintings are depicted in pixel-perfect handheld glory.
  • Draw bridges into existence, transverse canyons, and connect winding paths through space by using the celestial brush and the abilities of Chibiterasu's partners.

  • Videos / Game Trailers
    Okamiden Japanese Music Video    - click to enlarge
    Japanese Music Video
    Okamiden SDCC 10: Cute Puppy Gameplay - click to enlarge
    SDCC 10: Cute Puppy Gameplay
    Okamiden E3 2010: A New Evil Trailer  - click to enlarge
    E3 2010: A New Evil Trailer
    Okamiden Captivate 10: Gameplay  - click to enlarge
    Captivate 10: Gameplay
    Okamiden Captivate 10: Trailer   - click to enlarge
    Captivate 10: Trailer

    Screenshots / Images
    Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge Okamiden Screenshot - click to enlarge

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