[PlayStation 5] The Crown Of Wu Review
The Crown of Wu from Sony Interactive Entertainment and Red Mountain is waiting for you on PlayStation. Learn more in our The Crown of Wu review!
The Crown of Wu from Sony Interactive Entertainment and Red Mountain is waiting for you on PlayStation. It’s based on the classic Chinese tale Journey to the West, which has served as the inspiration for a ton of projects in animation, movies, books, comic books, manga, and video games – something like, say, The Monkey King, Dragon Ball, and SonSon. This time around, we’re getting a 3D action platformer that brings the tale of Sun Wukong to life.
Once the game booted up for the first time and panned to the main character, who was in some kind of tiny cell, I noticed that his companion was, unfortunately, dead on the other side. Once I was able to take control, I started to get some Planet of the Apes vibes, thanks to the art style used for the characters. You might be familiar with the original movie series, the remake, or the reboot movie series. Characters in those movies are also apes in the shape of human bodies. They can walk and talk, and humans are their prisoners/slaves.
You will help Wukong explore a world that is full of puzzles and plenty of combat. The combat aspect you will learn as you progress in the game with button prompts that appear on the screen. As for Wukong’s main goal, he’s on a quest to recover a crown that has been stolen. And once I got going, the problems started to pop up. The controls during the platforming sections feel off. You have zero control once you are up in the air. Double jumping or dash jumping is mostly OK. But if you’re dash jumping onto some vines, then the controls don’t work. Make a mistake during a jump, and you have no room for error and won’t be able to grab onto the ledge. You’ll have to start over and hope that you manage to get the jump just right the second time around. Or the third time.
Combat-wise, things work in The Crown of Wu once you get the hang of things. But, in general, combat still feels wooden, with poor animations. When a game has as much combat as The Crown of Wu, having some issues during battles is another issue on top of the aforementioned issues with jumping during platforming segments. The magic spells are even less impressive. They’re very cumbersome, and they take a while to get used to them. You refill your mana by hitting the pink crystals that are dotted around the game. At least they’re plentiful.
The only thing this game excels at is its puzzles, which leads me to wonder if the game was initially intended as a puzzle platformer with combat added later in development during the final rush. The puzzles are well thought out and require some thinking and a good eye for detail. There are also plenty of collectibles dotted around the game as well, so if you’re the type of gamer who wants to 100% their games, then you’ll have plenty to do in this one. Graphically speaking, the game looks OK. It’s nothing spectacular, but it gets the job done.
As for the trophies, The Crown of Wu has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy waiting for you. The list includes 20 Bronze trophies, 13 Silver trophies, and 3 Gold trophies. And since this is a Cross-Buy title, if you own a PlayStation 5 console, you can work on adding two Platinum trophies to your collection. The objectives to complete include collecting all jade bases, coins, pamphlets, etched shells, music sheets, combat documents, and relics, as well as learning all powers, completing each area, solving some riddles, and completing the game.
All in all, I would have a hard time recommending the game to friends if they asked me what was good to play. As an indie effort, there are some elements to rescue from this endeavor, but the overall package feels lacking. There’s always a chance that the devs can work on some updates to patch the game and improve the combat and the jumping. I mean, look at No Man’s Sky as an example! The Crown of Wu is available as a Cross-Buy title, so your $19.99 purchase will give you access to both the PlayStation 4 and the PlayStation 5 versions of the game at no extra cost.
This The Crown of Wu review is based on a PlayStation 5 copy provided by Sony Interactive Entertainment.