Dark night rises
Okami HD on PlayStation 3 opens with a tale of the goddess Shiranui, a white wolf, who teams up with the great swordsman Nagi to fight an eight-headed demon called Orochi that plagues Kamiki village. Unable to defeat the beast, Shiranui and Nagi seal away the evil, but the wolf goddess is poisoned and dies. In honour of the heroism of the wolf, the villagers create a shrine and place a statue of Shiranui within it.
One hundred years later, a boastful descendant of Nagi, breaks Orochi's seal to prove the legend is a lie, but instead the evil force escapes and once again a curse falls upon the whole of Nippon.
To fight this darkness, Sakuya, the wood sprite protector of Kamiki Village, uses her remaining strength to bring back the sun goddess and the wolf statue springs to life.
Armed with a celestial brush as Amaterasu, the reincarnated sun goddess, you must travel across Nippon to bring peace and tranquillity and defeat the evil of Orochi.
The Japanese garden
The sumptuous cel-shaded graphics of the acclaimed PlayStation 2 original now look better than ever in crisp and vivid High Definition.
A mix of watercolour pastel shades and the thick black lines of a calligraphy brush gives Okami HD a timeless visual style that's as gorgeous as it is beguiling. Whether crossing the expansive vistas of Shinshu Field, exploring the dark recesses of the Moon Cave or bounding along the beach of Ryoshima Coast, the views are truly magnificent.
Winner of the BAFTA Video Game Award for Original Score in 2007, the music of Okami HD is hauntingly beautiful. The soothing Japanese melodies couple with the percussive, adrenaline-pumping battle music to make a unique soundtrack that is distinctly Okami. Many of the characters even have their own recognisable theme tune.
The art, sound, narrative and gameplay all complement one another perfectly; drawing you in to the fictional land of Nippon and the epic battle between the godlike forces of good and the foreboding evil that invades this once peaceful land.
Of gods and men
The beautiful setting of Nippon is juxtaposed with a host of interesting and bizarre characters to help and hinder in equal measure along your journey.
Alongside this cast of strange and absurd individuals, you'll release and awaken 12 animal gods who grant incredible new powers to aid your quest. Look out for the drunken sheep, Kasugami, one character not to be missed.
Accompanying Amaterasu is the arrogant, tiny artist Issun, her trusty sidekick. Serving as a guide, Issun is your main way of communicating with other characters and he soon becomes much more than the mouthy bug he appears to be at first.
Central to the plot is Amaterasu, the sun goddess taking the form of a white wolf. Amaterasu - or Ammy, as Issun calls her - is a reincarnation of Shiranui, the goddess who fought and died to seal away the evil forces that are once again rising up across Nippon.
A brush of brilliance
Whether you play using a DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller or PlayStation Move motion controller, Amaterasu is a joy to control.
Launching the fiery reflector that sits on Amaterasu's back is the main way to damage enemies. Relentlessly attacking demons will deplete their health bar until they are obliterated.
Using PS Move you can control Amaterasu's celestial brush with ease. Cast spells on stunned opponents to cleave your foes in two or freeze, electrify and even incinerate any demons that oppose you. The motion controller makes your strokes even more responsive, creating an explosive bomb or thunderstorm with just a flourish of the wrist.
Combining physical attacks with the mystical power of the celestial brush brings that stroke of genius that makes Okami HD so rewarding. Take up your controller and help Amaterasu and Issun vanquish evil and return the natural balance to Nippon.
Okami HD is available to download now from our online store.