Reviews - Updated on April 13, 2022

On the one hand, there is no need to talk about Okami. The game has been published for the fourth time, it regularly collects scores in the region of 90 points out of 100, everyone who needs it has long been aware and has passed ten times. On the other hand, Okami, a work of art of incredible power, has been released on various platforms for almost twelve years under the caps of critics flying in the air, and in sales it acts like a dope-starved skier – the three previous releases together did not gain one and a half million copies. And now I will try to at least illuminate this abyss with a flashlight.Okami HD game review

The drawing technique, under which the picture is stylized, is called sumi-yo – this is a Japanese ink painting originally from China.

Old fairy tale with new hieroglyphs

Just as the name of Gosha Rubchinsky raises the price of a sweatshirt by a couple of hundred dollars, so the personality of the main person from among those who once gave the world this adventure causes awe. Especially now. Although Hideki Kamiya was a star a decade ago – after leading the development of Resident Evil 2 and Devil May Cry. It’s funny that in the first frame of the re-release there is no sacramental Story: Hideki Kamiya. Having disbanded Clover the year Okami was released, Capcom has somehow detracted from the role of the amazing team and its leader ever since.

And Kamiya, meanwhile, wrote a very strong story as a screenwriter and as a director put together an equally coherent game. At a basic level, this is a fairy tale. A magical story about how the eight-headed demon-dragon Orochi came to the ancient country of Nippon and turned almost all the lands into a terrible dark zone with demons and poisonous fumes. And the goddess of the sun Amaterasu, incarnated in the guise of a white wolf Shiranui, gathered the strength of all the gods and drove away evil.

But look a little deeper – and the tale begins to raise topics from which good fellows should learn many lessons. Here is the descendant of a great warrior, Susano, a brave drinker of sake. In fact, he is a pathetic coward, constantly running away from the battlefield, and even his sword is wooden. But different storylines directly and indirectly tell us that you cannot run away from difficulties, and Susano will change.

Okami HD game review

Unfortunately, there is no Russian language, and without a good knowledge of English, it will not be possible to understand the play of meanings in the dialogues.

Or the wolf heroine herself. For the inhabitants of Nippon, she looks like an ordinary white wolf, and only the pure in heart and small children see the divine halo around the goddess. Companion Amaterasu, beetle artist Issun, sadly states that people have ceased to believe in higher powers. After that, we begin to help the inhabitants of the surrounding village – and they are surprised how something good is happening around.

But Okami is not always serious. The comical Issun constantly gets into ridiculous situations and defuses the situation with great lines. The goddess Sakuya wears an overly tight kimono, and the village elder Kamiki only performs sacred rituals after interacting with the bottle. There will be in the plot and mysterious characters such as the samurai Waki, who speaks with a French accent, and funny stories, and small tragedies. Perhaps the only negative in the narrative part is the voice acting of the characters: instead of words, they monotonously mumble, which, during long monologues, begins to get on your nerves.

Sumi-yo is mine

But the picture is very reassuring. Japanese ink stylization made the game famous, but it is in the HD version that it looks best – more colorful, brighter, juicier, or something. The PlayStation 4 Pro version even supports 4K resolution, and trust me, Okami deserves that many dots on the screen. This is exactly the situation when you need to see once, how multi-colored flowers bloom after the she-wolf, how nature is transformed, how we feed cute little animals to unhurried music.Okami HD game review

Even without moving pictures, beauty is obtained.

Sumi-yo is not just an artistic technique. This is an important part of the gameplay. Along the way, Emmy (as Amaterasu calls Issun) meets other gods and gains their magical powers. Boar Bakugami will allow you to control magical fireworks, snake Nuregami – jets of water. All these wonderful things can appear in our world only with the help of the Heavenly brush. By pressing one of the “shifts” we stop time, open the canvas, make a few strokes – and voila, the sun appeared in the sky, a lily blossomed in the water, the enemies get hit with a sword.

Yes, drawing is inserted into both the peaceful and combat parts of the game. And in this way the impression is very holistic – we use the same techniques both in battles and for solving problems, helping people. Despite the fact that the battles take place on a separate screen, and there are downloads between large locations, the Nippon universe does not feel torn apart.

The land of fearless clovers

There is a lot to do here – from the very first appearance, critics began to compare Okami with The Legend of Zelda. If you look at it formally, then there is only one similarity – it is an open world, in the new parts of which you get, getting a fresh ability. Otherwise, Link’s adventures are far behind Amaterasu. There is no artificial division into dungeons and open fields. Here, communication with people and mutual assistance, rather than solving abstract puzzles, comes to the fore. Perhaps that is why the game turned out to be quite easy. Although there are tasks when you need to think, too.Okami HD game review

Another little thing from the past is the save points. Here, for some reason, they do not enrage, but look like a funny fossil.

Nippon is a very large country by the standards of the PlayStation 2 and Wii consoles, and although modern sandboxes allow many times more, I was still as interested in running after Emmy as I was more than six years ago. Why? Firstly, there is a huge amount of content and all sorts of little things that create a very special impression. And secondly – the very impression of peace and unhurriedness. The fact that the process is no less important than the result. That a four-leaf clover dug up on a hillock (it brings a few points for the development of Emmy abilities) is as significant as the battle with the main “boss”.

The most attentive already understood what I was getting at. We have a rather serious, slow, long and odd looking game that needs to be marketed to an audience of teenagers, kids and scammers. And Okami is so unshakable in these qualities that if you look at it as a regular action adventure, trying to skip cultural contexts without stopping near bamboo groves, it will look strange. That’s right – in a hurry, on YouTube (eleven years ago it already existed), between a couple of instant messengers – people evaluate games.

Hence the sales of one and a half million copies for three editions on consoles with a circulation of three hundred million. And so it’s pretty stupid to hope for sales on Steam, although there are both absolutely rave reviews and reviews full of hate from people who can’t skip the 20-minute opening cutscene…

Okami HD game review

You can even use a graphics tablet to control the brush on PC, but on PS4, drawing with the touchpad is implemented extremely poorly.


The main problem of music in Russia, as you know, is those who made the group “Mushrooms” the most popular in 2K17 (at least on iTunes). About the same with Okami – this thing is absolutely brilliant, but also too “complex” for the audience of Call of Whatever. Perhaps because Clover Studio made an adventure about creation, and creating is always harder than destroying. Or because the theme of faith as something good does not fit well into the modern context. What is certain is that there is now the best Zelda-style game on PC and current consoles.

Pros: ingenious art direction – now in 4K; a plot that is kept in perfect balance between seriousness and humor, where topics that are quite complex by the standards of media are raised; the atmosphere of kindness and warmth in the game is not for children; Zelda-style gameplay that surpasses any installment of the Nintendo series; brush painting is perfectly integrated into battles and peaceful scenes; for eleven years, the game has been perfectly preserved.

Cons: need direct hands and brains; touchpad controls on PS4 could be better.

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