Wikia

MediEvil Wiki

MediEvil

Talk0
480pages on
this wiki
This article is about the first game of the series. For general series information, see MediEvil (series).
MediEvil

Medievil-front

MediEvil - Front Cover NTSC

Japanese cover

You'll be dying to play!
A Gothic Tale Straight from the Grave.
Developer(s): SCE Cambridge Studio
Publisher(s): Sony Computer Entertainment
Platform(s): PlayStation, Playstation Network
Release date(s): PlayStation:

EU October 9 1998
NA October 30 1998[1]
JP June 17 1999
EU 1999 (Platinum)
EU May 9 2003 (Twin Pack)
PlayStation Network:
NA December 4 2006[2]
EU September 20 2007
JP November 28 2007[3]

Genre(s): Action-adventure
Rating(s): ESRB: Teen
ELSPA: 11+
OFLC: G8+
Mode(s): Single-player

MediEvil (メディーバル 甦ったガロメアの勇者 Medībaru Yomigaetta Garomea no Yūsha?) is an action-adventure video game and the first installment in the MediEvil series. It was developed by SCE Studio Cambridge and published by Sony. It was released on October 9 1998 in Europe, October 30 1998 in North America and on June 17 1999 in Japan for the PlayStation. Due to its success, the game was released in 1999 as a platinum title in Europe. It was also released in a bundle with C-12: Final Resistance on May 9 2003.

The game was followed by MediEvil 2, released in 2000, and MediEvil: Resurrection, a reimagining released in 2005 for the PSP. The game was made available for download for the PSP and PlayStation 3 via the PlayStation store in 2007. In August 2010, the game was made available for free to European PlayStation Plus subscribers.

Gameplay

During the game, the player must go through several places, from a graveyard full of zombies, to a flying ghost ship full of undead pirates, to a levitating board in an enchanted forest surrounded by flying demonettes. There are also several collectible items found in the levels which have to be collected in order to proceed to further areas or levels. There are several books placed upon stands all over areas in the game which may offer advice to Sir Dan, while some others contain humorous jokes or generally the history of the area. Some of them are placed in hidden places, but they are mostly found along the path that Sir Dan takes. They can be read if struck with a close range weapon.

Weapons

Dan starts the game with just his detachable arm, which can be used as both a melee weapon and a projectile, but is incredibly weak. Soon, however he obtains a small sword. The majority of weapons Dan encounters are received from the Hall of Heroes by collecting Chalices in each level, and range from swords, axes and hammers to projectile weapons such as crossbows and spears. There are other weapons that Dan encounters through the course of the game, such as a club that can be used as a torch, but breaks after too much use; a Dragon Armour that lets Dan breathe fire and protects him from flame attacks; and Chicken Drumsticks that can turn enemies into Roast Chicken for health recovery. Dan is also able to find a variety of shields to protect himself, ranging from copper to gold in strength.

Chalice of Souls

Throughout the levels Sir Dan is presented with an opportunity to collect that particular level's chalice, by filling it up with the souls of his enemies. This mystical item enables him to visit the Hall of Heroes after the conclusion of the level. Dan can only collect the chalice in each level when he has dispatched enough "defeated adversaries" to reach 100%. Chalices are hidden well and are not always at the end of a level, so Dan must back-track to the beginning to find it. In the "Hall of Heroes", he can converse with past heroes, "await spiritual guidance" and receive useful items or weapons to help him in his quest. Collecting all the chalices allows the player to see the true ending.

Enemies

Alongside certain weapons, there are also many colourful and varying enemies, though particularly zombies in the opening levels, which Dan must defeat. Later on through the epic journey through Gallowmere, Dan will encounter a number of other monsters and creatures, most of which are modelled after gothic demons associated with the time period. Sticky-fingered Imps, demonic Scarecrows, and Zarok's boiler guards are but a few of the ghastly and varied monstrosities that inhabit the levels.
Very simple weapons will require much use in order to finish off a single enemy. Some enemies can only be attacked either at certain times or using specific weapons, such as the Scarecrows. Many weapons, such as swords and throwing daggers, can be charged up to produce a more powerful attack to finish beasts off more quickly.

Characters

  • Sir Daniel Fortesque - The game's protagonist and playable character. He was King Peregrin's champion when he was alive. He was also one of the first men to die in the battle against Zarok and his Shadow Demons and was proclaimed Hero of Gallowmere by the king, so that the people of the land would feel safe. When Zarok returns to raise an army of dead, he also raises Sir Dan by mistake. Being given a second chance, Dan can finally prove himself a hero that he wasn't in his life by defeating Zarok.
  • Zarok the Sorcerer - The game's antagonist. He was King Peregrin's advisor and mage, until he began dabbling in Necromancy, which led the King to exiling him from the land. Embittered and filled with wrath, he led an army of Shadowy demons into battle against the King. His army was defeated, however, by the King's militia and soon he was proclaimed killed by Sir Dan. In truth, Zarok went into hiding, only to return 100 years later to try and take over the land once again.
  • King Peregrin - The past King of Gallowmere. He appointed Sir Dan a knight and banished Zarok from the land. He aids Dan in his quest by telling him how to defeat the Shadow Demons.
  • Heroes - Canny Tim, Stanyer Iron Hewer, Bloodmonath Skull Cleaver, Woden the Mighty, Karl Sturnguard, Dirk Steadfast, RavenHooves the Archer, Imanzi Shongama and Megwynne Stormbinder, all aid Dan in his quest by giving him their weapons and other useful items.

Plot

Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.

 The game starts with a flashback in the 13th century in the fictional English Kingdom of Gallowmere. The game puts the player in control of Sir Daniel Fortesque: the reanimated skeletal remains of a deceased champion knight whom history holds in high esteem, due to his supposed heroics in battle against the evil sorcerer Zarok who, in 1286, had raised an army of demons and set out to take over the kingdom. The legend has it that Fortesque lead the King's army into battle against Zarok's demonic hordes and that Sir Daniel himself killed the sorcerer during the battle - despite having actually been mortally wounded at the outset - cementing his posthumous status as the "Hero of Gallowmere".

This official version of events is later revealed as being vastly exaggerated and that Sir Dan's entire reputation is based on a lie. It turns out that Fortesque was not a hero at all and was in fact the first to die during the Battle of Gallowmere as he was hit in the eye by an arrow while leading the first charge against Zarok's undead armies. Although Sir Dan's troops still managed to go on and win the battle without him, Zarok was able to escape and went into hiding, leading everyone to assume that he was dead. The "fog of war and the shrouds of time" ultimately conspired to portray Fortesque as being the great hero of the battle.

One century later, in 1386, Zarok unexpectedly re-emerges from the shadows, robs the citizens in a nearby village of their souls and awakens his undead army. But the waves of necromantic energy he has unleashed upon the countryside have unwittingly revitalized the skeletal corpse of Sir Fortesque, still missing the eye where he was hit and unable to speak clearly having lost his jawbone. Sir Dan pulls a cobweb out of his eye socket, shakes off the trauma and then grins at the player. Unable to go to the Hall of Heroes in death due to his failures in life, Sir Fortesque sets out from his crypt to exact his revenge upon Zarok and prove himself a true hero now that he has been given a second chance.

After finding a way out of the cemetery, getting through the rest of Gallowmere, making his way to the entrance of Zarok's lair and getting past every other obstacle the lair has, Dan finally makes his way to the lair's arena, where Zarok is waiting. There, Zarok sends out his fleet of skeletal warriors. But before doing this, Dan places one of the chalices he collected throughout the game onto the white circle in the middle of the arena. This summons the souls belonging to the soldiers who fought in the war a century ago. Seeing that they are all ghosts, their weapons will affect Zarok's warriors, so they charge straight towards them and start fighting while Dan keeps his side alive by zapping them with good lightning (if the player fails to do this, Zarok's side will knock Dan out, resulting in an immediate game over.)

Once Zarok's side loses, Dan's warriors cheer while turning into health vials that Dan collects to get as much energy back as possible (he loses it while using the good lightning on his side.) Zarok then summons his champion, Lord Kardok, a skeletal man wielding a mace and riding a skeletal horse. After Dan defeats him, Zarok finally has enough of Dan getting in the way and goes to his lab. There, he tries to turn himself into a monster capable of defeating Dan, while humorously having trouble casting the right spell. Zarok eventually gets it right and then enters the arena revealing himself to be a wingless dragon of some sorts. The two fight, with Dan ending up victorious. Zarok then explodes into his normal form, while admitting defeat.

Zarok then gets up and states that if he is to fail, then all shall perish and that Sir Dan is doomed to stay in his lair forever. He then zaps the ceiling with his trident, which makes the roof cave in. While this happens, a big hunk of debris falls on top of Zarok with a humorous squeak. Dan then escapes and makes his way out to the arena entrance while the lair is falling apart. A small flying creature flies towards him, then the two get blown back by the explosion of a sundial that was next to them. Dan manages to hang onto one of the floating cogs from The Time Device till he gets to a small cave. After brushing the dust off of his amour, Dan runs away from the fire caused from the lair's destruction, but he is unable to outrun it and the explosion sends him off the cliff. As he's falling to his doom, a giant vulture catches him and takes him back to his crypt while the stolen souls return to the people of Gallowmere. The vulture then drops him off at his crypt, which Dan re-enters and returns to his eternal rest.

The ending is then determined by whether or not the player collected all the Chalices of Souls:

Not all chalices collected: After Dan returns to his eternal rest, the camera will zoom into the eye socket where Dan was not shot till the screen is completely black. The player is awarded with a simple "The End" message. Then the credits roll.

All chalices collected: The same thing happens, only this time Dan ends up going to the Hall of Heroes. When he arrives, the rest of the heroes have come to life (to the point where they're not even statues anymore) and are celebrating. They then notice that Dan has arrived and grow quite, whispering about his accomplishment. Dan then does a few acrobatics on the table and lands into the center chair, where he catches a cup that he flipped into the air with his foot. One of the heroes fills it up with wine and Dan unsuccessfully drinks it (he is still in his skeletal form, therefore he has no throat). The other heroes then applaud Dan for finally having the courage to defeat Zarok once and for all. The camera then zooms out of the Hall and into the sky, where it shows a constellation of Dan preparing to defend himself. The end message pops up and the credits roll. 
Spoilers end here.

Development

Development of MediEvil started in 1995 at independent developer Millennium Interactive. Chris Sorrell, previously known for the James Pond series, created the original concept for MediEvil and served as the games creative director. Prior to the development of MediEvil, Sorrell had endured a rather torrid time working on some edutainment products that Millennium Interactive had signed up to create. "Once these products were finally complete, I think management took pity on me and rewarded me with the chance of making my dream game" he recalls. According to Sorrell, the first design proposal for the game had the working title ‘Dead Man Dan’ and described a game that was a fusion of Capcom's Ghost'n Goblins with the art style of Tim Burton– especially the look and feel of The Nightmare Before Christmas,both of which were things that he was a huge fan of back in the mid ’90s. Lead artist and designer Jason Wilson shared his interest in dark, Gothic influenced artwork and they worked together to define the look and feel of the game. As development progressed, Wilson pushed the game into more of a Zelda-like direction as opposed to the original arcade-style concept. Sorrell approved of the new direction and said that he would liked to have expanded more on it.

From the outset, Sorrell wanted his game to possess a unique lead character. They worked with a script doctor named Martin Pond when looking for more of a backstory for the lead protagonist, Sir Daniel Fortesque. Pond came up with the idea that Sir Daniel could have been a pompous failure in life whose reincarnation was his one shot at redemption.

In addition to bringing together a brand new team – none of whom had really made a 3D game of this scale before – they were in ‘sell’ mode almost from day one, with the future of the studio riding on their ability to attract a major publishing deal as quickly as possible. They were initially working on multiple platforms including Windows and Sega Saturn as well as PlayStation before finally having the chance to pitch an early demo to Sony, who were so impressed with their work that they bought the whole studio and became Sony's second United Kingdom development studio. Late in the game's development, Sony requested that MediEvil should support the (then) new PlayStation analogue controller, which Sorrell described as a "particularly fortuitous event" as it allowed them to capture much more fluidity and intuitiveness within the game.

Sorrell said that MediEvil presented a mountain of challenges due to the fact that, like many other developers at the time, they were still very new to 3D gaming. Things like camera and character control presented many interesting new challenges and required the team to try out a number of approaches before settling on solutions that seemed to work. He said that they spent many long nights without sleeping, trying to finish the game. There were also many levels and ideas from the original concept that they were forced to removed because of time and budget constraints. In most cases, the best of what they had already created for those levels ended up being spliced into the levels that they shipped with. There was also intended to be a platform oriented section of the game where the player would control the worm that lived in Daniel's skull. Concept art and a level ost was created for this section, but it never materialized into the game. Even so, Sorrell said that the game still came very close to the original concept and he was most proud of how the team pulled together to finish the game without compromising on the quirky attention to detail or scope of the game.

Cover art and CDs

Additional content

Inside original copies of the game's PlayStation box was a poster featuring an insight into MediEvil's sequel, MediEvil 2. This detailed new characters and levels, set in 19th century London.

On the reverse of this image are map instructions for the first four levels of the game. These include details of the locations of vials, the chalice, life bottles, rune stones, gargoyles, rune hands, copper and silver shields, primary weapons and other secrets which may only be accessible after finding certain items or completing certain tasks.

Soundtrack

Main article: Les musiques de MediEvil

The original soundtrack of the game was made using electronic synthesizers to simulate an entire orchestra and organ. The tracks were composed by Paul Arnold and Andrew Barnabas. Chris Sorrell, the game's director, asked them to compose a Danny Elfman-style score, similar to those of Beetlejuice, The Nightmare Before Christmas and Batman Returns.[4]

Although there's no official soundtrack release, the 71st issue of the french magazine Joypad featured a CD named Les musiques de Medievil, which contains 10 tracks from the game and is the only "soundtrack" ever released for it.

Tracklist

Reception

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 80.40%[5]
Review scores
Publication Score
Absolute PlayStation 91%[6]
Electronic Gaming Monthly 7.8/10
Game Revolution A−[7]
GameSpot 8.2/10[8]
IGN 7.8/10[9]
Official PlayStation Magazine (US) 4/5
PSM 3/5
PSX Extreme 6.9/10[10]

MediEvil received positive reviews, with an 80.40% aggregate rating at Game Rankings.[11] The game received a 7.8/10 from IGN.[12] IGN heralded it as "A fun game and one of PlayStation's classics". GameSpot gave it an 8.2/10, proclaiming that the game is a "welcome surprise".[13] Game Revolution gave the game an A− and stated that "what we have here is one of the cleverest platform games ever made".[14]

Awards

  • Best PlayStation Game - Gaming Expo
  • Best Platinum Seller 1999 - Official PlayStation Magazine
  • Gold Award - Official PlayStation Magazine
  • Silver Award - Monthly Games
  • Token Prize - Network Games

Production Credits

Game Concept/Direction Chris Sorrell
Game Design Jason Wilson
Main Programming James Busby, Paul Donovan, Chris Sorrell, Matt Johnson, Sam Baker
Additional Programming Derek Pollard, Tim Closs, Dean Ashton
Mapping/Development Assistant Katie Lea
Art Design Jason Wilson
Rendered Sequences/Presentation Visuals Jason Riley
Additional Mapping Lindsay Pollard
AV Management Pete Murphy
Original Soundtrack Andrew Barnabas, Paul Arnold
Sound Effects Paul Arnold
Video Post-Production Tom Oswald
Speech Post-Production Andrew Barnabas
Sound Effects/Language Implementation Gary Richards, William Bell
Technologies Management Mike Ball
Technologies Programming Andrew Ostler, Dean Ashton, Matt Johnson
QA Testing Co-ordinator Sarah-Louise Lloyd
QA Testers Dave Holloway, Alex Sulman, Dan Smith, Stuart Harvey
Preliminary Script Jason Wilson
Dialogue Script Martin Pond
Producer Chris Sorrell
Manager (Cambridge Studio)

Ian Saunter

Executive Producer for SCEE John Roberts
Product Manager Chris Ansell
Manual Written by Jim Sangster

Designed by Steve O'Neill

Print Production Martin Pearce
Manual QA Approval Lee Travers, Stephen Griffiths
QA Manager Tony Bourne
Head of the Internal Testing Steve Archer
Testing Co-Ordinator Jim McCabe
Lead Tester Dave Burke
Assistant Lead Tester Andy Macoy
Testers Ian Cunliffe, Richard Bunn, Anthony Gill, John Cassidy, Dominic Berzins, Ian McEvoy, Phil Bramhill, Dee Norfolk, Lorna Croasdale, Pat Cowan, Carl McKane, Carl Guinney
Lead Localisation Tester Ed Valiente
Localisation Testers Claudia Schuldt, Christa Leonards, Lucie Dupoirieux, Susana Olga Paredes Alcaraz, Ana Maria Juarez-Ordóñez, Andrea Masneri, Miguel Sanchez
VOICE ARTISTS
Luis Soto, Paul Darrow, Harry Dickmen, Christopher Kent, Helen Lederer

Gallery

See also: MediEvil images

Official screenshots

Videos

Trivia

  • MediEvil was one of the first games to support a DualShock controller on the PlayStation.
  • The game has sold over 800k units world-wide.
  • On the game's official US website and on promotional game material, it is said that the game takes place in 847, but this is proven to be untrue in the game's sequel, where the year 1386 is revealed to be the true year of the game's events.
  • The game is dedicated to the memory of Mr Apple.
  • In the Japanese version of the game, Daniel wears a helmet.

References

  1. http://us.playstation.com/games-and-media/games/medievil-ps.html
  2. http://us.playstation.com/games-and-media/games/medievil-ps3-psp.html
  3. http://www.jp.playstation.com/software/title/jp9000npji00027_000000000000000001.html
  4. Ittensohn, Oliver. "Interview with composer Paul Arnold". GSoundtracks. http://www.gsoundtracks.com/interviews/arnold.htm. Retrieved 18 May, 2012.
  5. http://www.gamerankings.com/ps/197892-medievil/index.html
  6. http://www.absolute-playstation.com/api_review/rmedi.htm
  7. http://www.gamerevolution.com/review/medievil
  8. http://www.gamespot.com/medievil/reviews/medievil-review-2548312/
  9. http://www.ign.com/articles/1998/10/23/medievil
  10. http://www.psxextreme.com/ps1-reviews/29.html
  11. http://www.gamerankings.com/ps/197892-medievil/index.html
  12. http://www.ign.com/articles/1998/10/23/medievil
  13. http://www.gamespot.com/medievil/reviews/medievil-review-2548312/
  14. http://www.gamerevolution.com/review/medievil

External links

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki