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Okage: Shadow King

Okage: Shadow King, known in Japan as is a console role-playing game released by Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. in October 2001 exclusively for the PlayStation 2.

The game's story centers around a boy named Ari whose shadow becomes possessed by the evil king Stan. Ari is then forced into becoming Stan's avatar on a quest to take over the world.

Story

This is a story about an ordinary boy named Ari who lives in a remote village named Tenel. Everything starts as a normal day would. Ari is sent on an errand to pick up bread for dinner. The next night, the circus came to town. However, Ari missed it, because he instead listened to his father's ramblings about an unusual bottle he had found. That same night, his sister is attacked by a ghost and falls under a curse in which she can only speak Pig Latin. The family turns to the bottle for help. After agreeing to sell their souls to the devil, they hold a séance, thus summoning a ghostly butler named James. James is a servant of the Evil King Stan, descendent of the Great Evil King Gohma, who terrorised the world 300 years ago. Stan can only take form in this world by possessing a person's shadow, so he holds a contest to find whose is the best. Ari is determined to be the winner, and Stan possesses his shadow and makes Ari his slave. Stan easily disables the curse, but turns Annie's shadow pink in return.

The next day, Stan attempts to terrorise the town and conquer it, but none of the townspeople are frightened. Stan and Ari learn of a "Map o' Evil Kings", which shows the locations of other Evil Kings in the world. Stan realises that, while he was trapped in the bottle, various people stole his powers and became false Evil Kings. Stan starts off on a journey to defeat these Evil Kings, reclaim his stolen powers, and conquer the world--dragging a reluctant Ari along with him. A circus ringmaster gives him a copy of the Map o' Evil Kings, starting the quest in the city of Madril.

On their journey, they are suddenly surrounded by ghosts, then saved by a mysterious "Pink Hero". Soon, they arrive at Madril, where a "Sewer Evil King" is terrorizing the town in the sewers. They then arrive at the Hero's Club to find out that the Pink Hero's name is Rosalyn. They meet up with Rosalyn, who then plans to defeat the Sewer Evil King alone. Eventually, Ari ends up going to the sewers, and Rosalyn decides to accompany him. After defeating the Evil King, who is actually a Giant Rat, some of Stan's power returns. The pair also finds a small, mechanical component of some object. Then, Ari and Rosalyn check into an inn. An amusing aguement occurs, and soon after, Rosalyn tells Ari about a rumor that a princess with great magical powers is heading to the seaside town.

Now, Ari, Rosalyn, and Stan travel to the second floor of Madril. There they meet the cute-but-talentless singer Linda, who has a pair of two purple and yellow horns on the top of her head. Intrigued, she begins calling Ari her "coach". Upon leaving Madril, and entering the Rumille plain, they meet the strange scientist, Gutten Kisling. He joins your party. The unlikely trio next travels to a seaside town where the Princess Marlene and her butler Belioune are staying for a festival. Unfortunately, the Princess has been seized by the Bubble Evil King, a giant fish-monster that is the second king on the map. Upon destroying him, Stan recovers more of his power, along with another mechanical component. Stan claims this power gives him the ability to control humans. He orders Ari to get close to Marlene. When Ari hesitates, Stan forces him to hug the princess. That hug only gained the evil king and his servant a slap on the cheek. The power didn't work at all. Afterwards, Stanley makes an interesting comment, saying when he tried to use the power, it seemed like the princess had "no soul." Ari begins to develop a crush on the mysterious Marlene. She remains distant, though, and says nothing.

Returning to Madril, the gang discovers that a strange corporation has been making underhanded deals and cheating townspeople out of their money. Further investigation leads to an industry where it is revealed that the third evil king in the batch-the Chairman Evil King-has taken over! The trio overruns his offices, but he threatens Marlene to spread a rumor about Marlene kissing her servant, Ari, if she doesn't cooperate with his schemes.They head to the Escapless Abyss and track him down. After taking him down and claiming his component, he murmurs something about the "back of the sewers." This new clue stays with the group as they discover the Big Bull Evil King, a muscle-bound bull. His defeat reveals that a strange voice has been calling to him ever since he absorbed Stan's power, telling him to go to the back of the sewers to make his dreams come true. Intrigued, the Big Bull Evil King is offered a place in the group, offering his part of the strange machine.

Upon returning to Madril, the foursome discovers that people are now obsessed with Linda's songs. Everyone, including the local scientists, are talking like her and listening to her music. It is discovered that Linda herself is the next evil king on the list -the Teen Idol Evil King! Her hypnotic songs begin to affect even Stan a little, so the group travels to a snow-bound plain to defeat her. It is revealed that Linda has been calling Stan her coach the whole time; she apparently thought that Ari was "some weird doll" and thought Stan was hiding as a "camoflouge". After fighting her, Linda relents, and joins the party with more information about the sewers. She also offers up her piece of the odd machine, and it is fused together to become a magical music box! The box is the key to breaking the seal on the gate to the back of the sewers, so they travel there. Upon solving the huge puzzle that guarded a weird machine in the area, Ari steps onto it...and...nothing happens...

Except that he is now invisible! Everyone seems to have forgotten about him, and is ignoring the fact that he ever existed; even his own family members lost their memories of him. As he walks through Madrill he sees Marlene going into a hotel with her butler Beiloune. It seems Marlene cannot fully forget Ari but is unable to recall exactly who he is or how he made her life fun. Beiloune remarks about how he is glad that Ari left the world, but things are not going as he planned. In desperation Ari heads north. Ari discovers that his condition is not unique; there is a whole town, called Triste, full of people like himself. He seeks advice from the circus ringmaster who first bequeathed him the map, and is told that the only way to save himself is to force people to recognize him. Ari must then walk up to conversing people and force his own opinion into their talks. After doing this enough, he returns to the town, and the ringmaster helps restore him. There, Stan and Ari reunite, and meet the Phantom Evil King (Epros). He announces that the circus ringmaster was once an Evil King himself, but that he sacrificed his power to the Sewer Evil King. After that event, Ari tracks down the missing party members. After that, they follow the hints and track him down. After a war of words, they defeat the Phantom Evil King, and the five manage to persuade him to join the group.

By this time, it is revealed that "Princess" Marlene is actually just a doll made to look like the princess. The real Marlene is trapped in an alternate dimension. Belioune is actually her father, the creator of the world the game takes place in. He created the world to let his daughter have fun, but he lost her and became obsessed with the doll. He plans to destroy the world that defied him and ruined his daughter's adventures. Belioune then announces that he will create the ulitmate evil king to destroy them. Determined to stop Belioune, the six heroes track down and destroy the Vampire Evil King, the last of the seven. After being defeated the Vampire Evil King agrees to open the bridge to the World Library. There, the gang bands together to defeat Belioune, who becomes a giant monster to destroy them. Thankfully, the group's teamwork brings him down, destroying the classification system ,freeing Marlene, and making Stan a true Evil King again-but he decides not to destroy the world after all. Instead, he decides to rule it, but Rosalyn chases him off. Whether or not he actually accomplishes this, we may never know.

Characters

  • : The hero. A quiet, 16-year-old boy with an overshadowed destiny. His shadow is so thin, that most people ignore him and it is what enables Stan to take him as his slave. Seems to be without note, but... He reluctantly takes on the responsibility of being enslaved by the Evil King Stan in order to save his sister from the ghost's curse -- and once that's done, to save the world from the Fake Evil Kings and restore Stan's true power. In the beginning of the story, his weapon is a branch. He obtains a sword, which is upgradeable, as he progresses through the game. He then becomes the servant of Princess Marlene.
  • , better known as Evil King Stan, or just Stan, possesses Ari's shadow to appear in this world. He is short-tempered and has a childish personality, but has moments where he picks up on things that even the other group members miss. He has built his identity on being evil and desires to be feared by the world as the Great Evil King. He claims to be the reincarnation of, and therefore the heir to, the Great Evil King Gohma, who was defeated by the Great Hero Hopkins three hundred years previous to the story. Apparently, Hopkins also sealed Stan away into a bottle, which is found by Ari's father.
  • is the ghost butler to the Evil King Stan. He is seen quite a few times in the game, mostly with just info on things you should know about, other than that, he is not much help.
  • 22-year-old heroine, is a master of the rapier and the reluctant devotee of the parasol. She and Stan have a history of conflict where, upon releasing him from his bottle three years previous to the game's beginning, he took over her shadow. Unlike his surprisingly benign relationship with Ari, he called her fat and turned her shadow pink. She tried to take her own life in order to stop Stan, but Stan retreated back into his bottle as he hated her shadow. She then kicked the bottle off the mountain, where it landed in a forest, to be found by a hunter and in time- make its way into Ari's father's possession.
    Rosalyn used to be an elite hero and was at the top of her class, but ever since her shadow turned pink she's become a laughing stock. Although she hides her pink shadow with a parasol, pretty much everyone knows about it. She never forgave Stan for this mockery and has been hunting for him ever since. She feels she needs to prove her strength and skill as an expert swordswoman and caster of spells. She is also a magnet for ghosts.
  • : She is snobby and pompous, but eventually becomes Ari's love interest. Also, later in the game the player finds out that the Marlene they know is actually a doll, and that the real Marlene is trapped. Her only contact to the outside world is her ability to see through the doll's eyes.
  • : A strange scientist who has devoted his life to the ghost research, although he stalks pretty girls under the guise of doing field work. He throws books at the enemies as one of his attacks. He is enticed by Rosalyn's ability to attract ghosts and joins Ari on his quest. When you first meet him, he tells you that he loves clipping toenails for fun. He seems to be quite intelligent. Kisling is forty-five years old.
  • : The Big Bull Evil King. A fighter with great physical strength who loves battles and joins Ari's party to help defeat the other evil kings. His dream is to someday open his own athletic gym. He owns a spa near Triste, which is run by his followers, and has a crush on Linda. His idiotic and unwitting personality makes him the lovable comic relief.
  • : She is known as the Teen Idol Evil King but aspires to become a professional singer. She attacks by using her microphone as a weapon and enchants people with her bubbly personality and voice. She was thought to have a crush on Ari, but it is later discovered that she actually has a crush on Stan -- she thinks that Ari is just some doll to which Stan is attached. Sadly, while a sweet girl, Linda is not very bright.
  • : He is known as the Phantom Evil King and throws playing cards at the enemies as one of his defenses. A magician of sorts, he floats above the ground. Sophisticated and well dressed, he is obsessed with magical powers and discovering the truth of the world. He always speaks in rhyme, which annoys Stan to no end. Epros joins Ari's team later on in the game, after you defeat him in the Gear Tower. And sometime in the game, he will stop speaking in rhymes (which Stan might enjoy) when Linda starts doing something to him....

Fake Evil Kings/Bosses

  • Sewer Evil King: The first boss of the game, with 420 HP. He is a giant Rat, and he joins the circus after being defeated. His minions are Lurking Rats, and he resides in the sewer system of Madril.
  • Bubble Evil King: A giant fish who resides in the Aquatic Ruins. He holds the princess hostage and has 666 HP. His minions are Compassionate Crabs.
  • Former Chairman Evil King: A big, greasy businessman who resigns his position in Madril and goes to he Escapeless Abyss. He has 642 HP and his minions are Steel Armors.
  • Big Bull Evil King: Big Bull before he joins your Party. He has a whopping 2746 HP and his minions are Bull Demons. He resides in the Big Tree Hole. After you defeat him, he joins your party.
  • Teen Idol Evil King: Linda before she joins your party. She resides in the Sealed Cave and has 2400 HP. Her minions are Shrewd Bears. After you defeat Linda, she joins your team and reveals that she actually liked Stan and thought Ari was a "weird doll."
  • Phantom Evil King: Epros before he joins your party. He resides in the Gear Tower and has only 870 HP. However, he is nearly untouchable by physical attacks, and thus can almost only be defeated with magic, bottles, or the Black Cat Jewel. His minions are Masterless Swords.
  • Vampire Evil King: A strange vampire that terrorizes the Highlands. He has only 2100 HP but he uses extremely powerful elemental spells, such as Absolute 0, Inferno, and Maximum Voltage. His minions are Sucky Bats and he resides in the house that appears only at night.
  • Circus Evil King: Though you never fight him, this man was once, technically, an evil king. He is the circus ringmaster Ari meets early in the game, when he gives you a copy of the Map O' Evil Kings. It is later revealed that he surrendered his magical powers to the Sewer Evil King, freeing him of his status.
  • Belioune: The Final and most powerful boss in the game. He is Marlene's Butler turned into a giant hideous monster. He has a massive 9999 HP and resides in the world library. He also uses a devastating spell called Channel. He also doesn't have any minions with him. But if underleveled, it may take multiple tries to defeat this massive boss.

Reception

IGN gave Okage a good score of 7.2. This was a good score for IGN to give because it was on par with everyone else. Gamerankings has compiled an average score of 72%; matching IGN's.

However, the game was also criticized for its awkward battle system, mainly the fact that the game ends if Ari dies in battle.

References

External links

  • IGN page
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