MediEvil (2019 video game)
|Developer(s)||Other Ocean Emeryville|
|Publisher(s)||Sony Interactive Entertainment|
|Release||25 October 2019|
|Genre(s)||Action-adventure, hack and slash|
MediEvil is a 2019 action-adventure game developed by Other Ocean Emeryville and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment for the PlayStation 4. Players controls the protagonist, Sir Daniel Fortesque through a series of levels, using various weapons to fight enemies as well as encountering non-playable characters. It is a remake of MediEvil, which was originally developed by British video game developer SCE Cambridge Studio and released for the PlayStation in 1998. MediEvil was released in October 2019. MediEvil received mixed reviews from critics, who praised the game's presentation, but criticized some aspects of its gameplay.
MediEvil takes place across a series of levels selectable from a world map. The game's playable character, Sir Daniel Fortesque is able to utilize a variety of weapons, ranging from close range weapons such as swords and clubs to long-range weapons such as throwing daggers and bows. Many weapons can be charged for a more powerful attack. When not possessing any weapons, Sir Daniel is able to use his arm.for melee and ranged attacks. Sir Dan is also able to equip a shield alongside his weapons for defense. Shields can resist a limited amount of damage and do not protect Dan from certain types of damage, such as from long falls.
As Dan is hit by enemies, he will lose part of his health bar. If he loses all of his health, the game will end. While Dan does not recover health automatically between levels, he can utilize Life Bottles to automatically recover all of his health should it be completely depleted.
Dan is able to encounter two varieties of gargoyle heads throughout the game: green gargoyles offer Dan information, while blue gargoyles offer him ammunition in exchange for gold he finds. In each level, Dan is able to find a Chalice of Souls, which can be collected if the player has defeated enough enemies. Dan can use the Chalices to gain access to the Hall of Heroes, where he can talk to one of several non-playable characters to receive a new weapon or other item. If Sir Daniel collects all Chalices, the game's true ending will be shown.
While the game remains largely identical in content to the original MediEvil, several new features have been introduced. These include the "Dan Cam", an optional camera viewpoint which uses an over-the-shoulder perspective, as well as optional "Lost Souls" objectives, which require Sir Daniel to complete a mission received from a ghost found in each level; completion of which unlocks the original 1998 game as a bonus feature. A compendium of information about the game's characters and enemies, known as the Book of Gallowmere, is also available.
According to the executive producer of the MediEvil remake, Jeff Nachbauer, Other Ocean Emeryville wished to keep most elements from the original MediEvil intact, unless they felt there was a good reason to change something. The developers researched music the original developers would have listened to at the time of the development of the original MediEvil. Level geometry was extracted from the original MediEvil and imported into the remake's engine to serve as a reference for the placement of level elements. Due to the game's farther draw distance and wider aspect ratio, new background areas that didn't exist in the original MediEvil needed to be created, and additional trees and foilage were added to certain areas. Enemy behaviors left in the source code of the original MediEvil, but removed from the finished game due to time constraints were restored for the MediEvil remake. Several glitches present in the original MediEvil were retained for the remake, which were considered by the developers to be crucial to the feel of MediEvil. Most in-game dialogue was recycled from the original MediEvil. Jason Wilson, the voice actor of Sir Dan in MediEvil and MediEvil: Resurrection, reprised his role. Unlike the original MediEvil, where Sir Dan's muffled voice effect was created by recording his lines while wearing a bucket, the effect was instead created digitally for the MediEvil remake. Tom Baker was replaced as the voice of the narrator by Lani Minella. The game is dedicated to Zarok's voice actor, Paul Darrow, who died on 3 June 2019.
Andrew Barnabas and Paul Arnold, who had previously composed the soundtrack for the previous three games in the series, returned to compose for the MediEvil remake. The music of the MediEvil remake was orchestrated by Prague Symphony Orchestra. The game's soundtrack consists of remastered versions of music that appeared in MediEvil: Resurrection, orchestral arrangements of tracks from the original MediEvil, and new tracks composed exclusively for the MediEvil remake.
The MediEvil remake was first announced as a remaster of MediEvil at the 2017 PlayStation Experience. MediEvil was fully revealed on 31 October 2018, and was confirmed to be a full remake, rather than a remaster as was previously announced. In the 9 May 2019 PlayStation State of Play, the digital only "Digital Deluxe Edition" version was revealed, which includes the Super Armor from MediEvil 2 (which now increases the gold that Dan earns), a theme based on the game for the PlayStation 4 user interface, a digital art book, a digital graphic novel prequel known as MediEvil: Fate's Arrow, and a digital music player featuring the game's soundtrack. In the 24 September 2019 PlayStation State of Play, a demo of MediEvil, known as MediEvil: Short-Lived Demo, was announced to be available from the end of the presentation until 6 October 2019. It features an exclusive helmet that can carry over to the full game. The helmet is based on the Japanese version of the original MediEvil, which has Sir Daniel wear a helmet by default, and also increases the game's difficulty level.
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MediEvil received mixed reviews from critics. It received an aggregate score of 67/100 from review aggregator Metacritic. Praise was directed at the game's visual design, which was considered to be faithful to the original MediEvil, but criticized the game for some aspects of its gameplay, which were believed to be outdated, most notably the game's lack of a checkpoint mechanic. IGN's Travis Northup considered MediEvil's "relentlessly charming story" as it's greatest strength, and praised the added details and personality to the game's visuals and audio, but described the game's combat as "sloppy and disorienting".
In the United Kingdom, MediEvil was the fifth best selling game in its week of release.
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