Single-player video game
| 7.9/10 |
31 October 1999
| Shoji Meguro
First-person hack and slash
Atlus games, Shooter games
Maken X (魔剣X) is a game for the Dreamcast video game console that fits into a subgenre of "first-person slashers". The game is mainly regarded as a first-person action game because of the realistic elements in gameplay. It is unique in that the main character is the weapon (Maken), rather than a person.
The word "Maken" literally translates as "demonic sword". On the title screen, the "X" is shown to stand for deus ex machina (Latin for "god out of the machine").
The player can control a number of characters via "brainjacking", which leaves the person a vegetable. The woman displayed on the boxart is the first person controlled when the facility that Maken was created at comes under attack.
Maken X Wikipedia
The western release of Maken X was heavily censored from its Japanese counterpart, which featured a more National-Socialist theme for some enemies (most notably, two of them had swastikas for faces), and a boss battle against the pope set inside the Vatican.
The PlayStation 2 remake, Maken Shao: Demon Sword, retains censorship of the swastika in all versions, including the Japanese. It also contains significant differences to the gameplay, the most striking being that it happens in a third-person perspective rather than first-person.
Maken X received mostly positive reviews, however, it was heavily criticized for its poor English localization. IGN stated in its review of the Japanese version that "the Japanese voice acting is top-notch", while stating that in their domestic review that "various problems ranging from the horrid translation to the even worse voice acting job make it hard to follow." This was part of the reason why IGN gave the US version a "good" score of 7.9/10, while giving the Japanese import an "outstanding" score of 9.0/10. In Japan, Famitsu magazine scored the game a 32 out of 40, and the Japanese Dreamcast Magazine also gave it a high reviews of 9, 9, and 7.
A surreal adventure following Kei Sagami as she journeys to rescue her kidnapped father. Her father, Professor Hiromitsu Sagami, developed the Maken, a sword designed to heal people. As strange as a weapon that heals people sounds, the Maken does very little actual healing. The soul of the sword seems bent on "brainjacking," simultaneously stealing a person's knowledge and killing them, rather than saving lives. Unfortunately for Kei, unknown assailants attack her father's lab and mysteriously the Maken grafts itself to her arm. Struggling to keep her mind separate from the Maken, Kei and her childhood friend wander about leaving behind a trail of corpses.