The lights are on
A lot of work goes into birthing a new character for a video game. Famed actor Andy Serkis (Gollum in the Lord of the Rings films) may have lent his voice and movements to Enslaved’s hero, Monkey, but the team at Ninja Theory spent a lot of time envisioning what that character would look like in the game world. Enslaved: Odyssey to the West is actually based off of a centuries-old Chinese legend, and a lot of details from that fable shaped the design of Ninja Theory’s protagonist. Let’s break down what sets Monkey apart from some of video games' other action grunts.
1. Headband – This is the slave headband that Trip modifies to enslave Monkey. It causes him extreme pain if he does not follow her commands. Guess that's why the game is called Enslaved.
2. Face Paint – Enslaved is based off of an ancient Chinese novel titled Journey to the West. Monkey’s face paint is an homage to that original story, in which the main character is a playful yet cunning monkey king whose face paint was a prominent feature. It also serves to reflect the tribal nature of the original Chinese legend.
3. Scars – Monkey's body shows the branding marks that have been made from his countless battles with the mechs. We think it just gives him more sex appeal.
4. Muscles – Monkey's strong muscular physique has been honed from many years of clambering and combat. Ninja Theory brought in an expert in anatomical structure to ensure the muscles were as accurately portrayed as possible.
5. Sash – In the original Chinese tale the main character was a kind of monkey god and actually had a monkey’s tail. Ninja Theory’s version has a cloth sash to represent the tail.
6. Gloves – Fighting tough metal mechs can be brutal on the knuckles, so Monkey has fashioned these gauntlets to protect himself while punishing his alloy enemies. These gloves are also capable of generating a shield, which protects Monkey from gunfire.
7. Staff – Monkey's weapon of choice. He uses this telescopic staff primarily in hand-to-hand combat, but it is also capable of firing energy-based projectiles to disable enemies at long range.
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That's pretty interesting. A lot of times I assume that characters are just completely made up and random. It's interesting to find out when characters are created based off actual legends, and their looks are created around that. Very cool.
This game just all of a sudden started getting some pretty sweet hype. I thought only cover story games got hubs? I hope it's good, but I'll be waiting on the review for this bad boy.
whats up with his feet?
I am getting the game regardless but I hate the name Monkey for my lead.
It appears number 5 is labeled with a 7, and number 7 refers to something not in the picture at all. FAIL.
Good picture though.
He looks demented and possessed by the Demon... or it's that a new shade of masquera.
One of my most anticipated of 2010. Can't wait!
WOW they even go as detailed as scars. Interesting.
Hmmm.... Somebody wasn't very careful when they labeled those numbers....
The numbers are all mixed up. Might want to get that fixed.
I definitely appreciate the character design from Ninja Theory. Feeling vibes of Kai from Heavenly Sword, through the facepaint and the vibrant eyes. The shoulders seem a bit out of control in that still, but I imagine seem more appropriate when he's throwing himself crazy distances entirely with upperbody strength.
Hmmm, I had been wondering about those scars...
Thanks for the article, Ben! I have the game pre-ordered because you get a different playable version of Monkey with the pre-order, that's based off of some cool pre-production artwork.
Any chance you could tell us what's up with the half-boots he's wearing?
Need. Game. NOW.