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Overview

Okabu is a co-op centric puzzle/adventure game described by developer Hand Circus as a "hyper tactile toybox world filled with a huge number of puzzles, playthings, adorable creatures and devious machines."

The cooperative campaign will have you cleaning up the damage caused to the lands of the Yorubo by the evil polluting Doza.

Story

Okabu tells the story of two Cloud Whales named Kumulo and Nimbe. As everyone knows, Cloud Whales live in a kingdom in the sky. However, when the malevolent Doza machines begin to pollute the Earth, their exhaust and smog quickly rise up into the sky. The Cloud Whales quickly grow sick. Kumulo and Nimbe are some of the only healthy creatures left in the kingdom, and they are dispatched by their rulers to find the source of this illness and scratch it out. Their search leads them to the surface, where they must battle the Doza in extraordinarily laid back fashion.

Quickly upon retreating to the surface, the Cloud Whales find a tribe of nature-loving creatures called the Yorubo. The Yorubo are also being affected by the pollution, and agree to help Kumulo and Nimbe rid the world of its sickness. The Doza have imprisoned certain key Yorubo, and the Cloud Whales must free these creatures in order to enlist their aid.

Gameplay

Although Okabu's story sees the world at stake, its gameplay is inherently relaxing and stress-free. The developers set out to make a game that anyone could play, made all the more entertaining through co-operative play and an eco-friendly message. The game revolves around the idea of recycling waste and cleaning that which cannot be recycled. To this end, players will have to solve mild puzzles, using the four key Yorubo tribe members as special powers to advance through the environment. For example, one Yorubo has a plunger that can attach to objects and pull them down, while another can summon helpful creatures to perform mundane tasks in the Cloud Whales' stead.

Elemental affinities also play a role in puzzle solving, as each Cloud Whale can absorb liquids from the environment into their body. This leads into one of the game's central mechanics of absorbing water from a puddle or creek and using it to clean garbage away from a surface. Other absorbable elements slowly feature as the game progresses.

Exclusivity On PSN

On July 13, 2011, Sony announced that they would be committing an extra $20 million towards adding more exclusive games to their Playstation Network lineup. Okabu was one of these games, paid for through Sony's Pub Fund initiative, alongside other recent releases such as Eufloria and the upcoming Papo & Yo.

Reception

Okabu released on October 18, 2011, and was met with generally middling reviews. While some reviewers praised the game's stress-free co-operative play, others derided its simple nature and unbalanced co-op (in the beginning of the game, until a second Yoruba unit is found, the second player is basically rendered powerless.) It currently sits at a 58 average on Metacritic.

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