• Originally planned for the Nintendo Gamecube way back in 2001; Kameo: Elements of Power has undergone more facelifts than Joan Collins; and has shifted platform no less than three times. However, this game shows no signs of overstretching, nor multiformat niggles. What it does show is that care and attention for Kameo’s gameplay that Rare is famous for, and it shows it in droves.

    However, gameplay isn’t what makes a first impression; at least not till you pick up a pad. Most people’s first impression of Kameo is a negative one; the accusation of it being aimed at kids is by far and away the main one. While in some respects that might be true, 10 minutes with Kameo is enough to dismiss any notions of it having child-like simplicity.

    Kameo: Elements of Power

    So, just what type of game is Kameo; and just what can you expect from your ?40? Well, Kameo: Elements of Power combines both RPG (Role Playing Game) elements, and also action elements to truly create an innovative, immersive experience for the gamer.

    The story revolves round a girl called Kameo. Kameo has a unique ability, one gifted to her over her jealous sister Kalus, and action that results in the dilemma Kameo faces. Among her abilities is the ability to transform into Elemental Warriors. These Elemental Warriors give Kameo the strength and special abilities to face any challenges that the rich, lush and beautiful world she inhabits can throw at her; and boy (or should that be girl), does she get thrown some stuff.

    Unfortunately for Kameo, her sisters jealously gets the better of her and results in her awakening the evil troll king Thorn. And as if cleaning up the mess her sister had made wasn’t bad enough, Kameo has to retrieve all the elemental warriors. That wasn’t Kalus’ fault, no, that was Kameo’s fault.

    Now, as those of us who have brothers and sisters will know, cleaning up after them is hardly what can be described as fun. The third person viewpoint in Elements of Power however, treats you to a stunning visual and audio treat; one that you can quite easily get lost in. Put simply, the first time you leave the kingdom you will be amazed at the sheer amount of characters on screen, depending upon your position, there can easily be upwards of 100 characters all either baying for your blood, or fighting by your side. And all the while an absolutely jaw dropping landscape will sound the action.

    Despite its ‘cartoony’ graphics, Kameo is after Condemned, the best looking game on the 360. If you feel the urge to show off to your friends what the next generation of games looks like; don’t fret about showing them Kameo.

    But like most people, you probably don’t buy games on their looks; so how does Elements of Power play? Well, to be frank, very slick and at times enchanting. The interface for changing elemental warriors couldn’t be simpler. Change into the necessary warrior by hitting your X, Y, or B buttons; or change which warrior is connected to which button by going into the WotNot book, highlighting the warrior and clicking the button you want to assign it to.

    However, the Elemental Warriors aren’t your only way of gaining abilities. Resident wise-thing Mystik is always around to offer you a lesson or two in getting round the world.

    While the game remains challenging, it never feels insurmountable, making for a refreshing change. The variety of puzzles, adventure and action give the game a constant ‘new’ feeling. However, should you get stuck, the many scrolls lying round, combined with your trust WotNot book will get you by, often its just that your using the wrong warrior.

    However, as always the game is far from perfect. Lacklustre Live features, and the lack of co-op results in the loss of a few marks; something that could easily be rectified in its sequel.

    Overall, the Elements of Power turns out to be one of those rare (no pun intended) treats; a game that doesn’t push its own version of reality down your throat, while remaining enjoyable throughout.

    Score: 7/10

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