Enslaved: Odyssey to the West

Monkey Tragic

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Of course, poor narrative never hindered a great game. But Enslaved is not even a good one. It's focus on narrative tries to disguise some truly lacklustre gameplay, the only memorable sections of which bookend the game's insipid and repetitive bulk with set-pieces ripped wholesale from Uncharted 2 and Lost Planet 2, respectively.

Enslaved: Odyssey to the West

Round-a-bout

Combat skills are divided into three disciplines. Stealth involves a simple circumnavigation of turrets, in which Trip can be used to activate a decoy, drawing their fire. Distance shooting involves blasting static mechs at range, where non-existent AI reduces gameplay to a Turkey Shoot. But the absolute worst mechanic – and unfortunately most widely employed – is melee, where Monkey's staff is limited to just a couple of combos which, after ten hours of gameplay, I affectionately nicknamed Repetitive Strain Injury and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Enslaved: Odyssey to the West

I wouldn't touch him with a ten foot pole... on second thoughts...

When not fighting ennui, sorry mechs, progress is a simple case of climbing and jumping around flashing breadcrumb trails of platforms and pipes and poles. Rudimentary co-op mechanics, in which you throw Trip across wide gaps, or lift heavy objects for her to crawl under fail to alleviate the drudgery, as do occasional, simplistic puzzles. And racing sections, where Monkey speeds around on his cloud, although entertaining, appear all-too-infrequently to break the monotony.

Sponsored: 10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity

Next page: Rushed to market