MediEvil is a hack and slash action adventure title developed by Other Ocean Emeryville and published by Sony. It is a remake of the 1998 PlayStation title MediEvil, which was developed by SCE Cambridge Studio.
MediEvil was originally released for the PlayStation in 1998 after having been in development at SCE Cambridge Studio since 1995. The studio, which had been known as Millenium Interactive when development began, intended to make MediEvil an arcade style shooter for PC and the Sega Saturn. However, after Millenium’s acquisition by Sony and them being transformed into SCE Cambridge Studio, the parameters of project shifted.
In December 2017, Sony announced that they were working on a remaster of MediEvil for the PS4, and that more details on the title would be revealed soon. There was no more information from Sony’s side for many months, however, in October of 2018, Sony unveiled MediEvil for the PS4, and announced that it wouldn’t be a remaster, but a ground-up remake of the PS1 original title.
It was announced that the game’s development would be handled by Other Ocean Emeryville, and that several members of the original development team at SCE Cambridge that worked on the first game were also involved in the production of the remake. The game is developed using Unreal Engine 4. Sony also confirmed that the game would support 4K on PS4 Pro, and that MediEvil would not be a full-price release, instead being sold for $29.99.
MediEvil on the PS4 also isn’t the first time the original PS1 title has been remade. A reimagining by the name MediEvil: Resurrection released as a PlayStation Portable launch title in 2005. Meanwhile, the original MediEvil was also re-released on PlayStation Network for the PS3 in 2007.
MediEvil takes place in the fictional kingdom of Gallowmere. One hundred years before the beginning of the game, Gallowmere was attacked by the evil sorcerer named Zarok and his armies of the undead. Legend foretold that Sir Daniel Fortesque would lead the armies of the King of Gallowmere and fight back against the undead, killing Zarok before ultimately succumbing to his own fatal injuries. However, when the battle against Zarok began, the very first arrow fired killed Dan. The King covered up this incident and declared Dan a martyr and a hero, while Zarok went into hiding.
One hundred years later, Zarok has returned, and he has used his sorcery to reawaken his undead army, while also stealing the souls of the people of Gallowmere. In doing so, however, he also inadvertently reawakens the corpse of Dan, who is now no more than a mere skeleton, with no jaw and only one eye. Dan takes it upon himself to fulfil his destiny and earn redemption by defeating the undead army, killing Zarok, and saving Gallowmere.
MediEvil is a hack and slash action adventure title, like the original PS1 classic. Players can choose between various different weapons to fight against enemies in combat. These can ranged from up-close melee weapons to ranged weapons, including clubs, swords, hammers, axes, throwing knives, and crossbows. When Dan has no weapon equipped, he can rip off his skeletal arm and use it as a makeshift weapon, both up-close and for ranged attacks. Some weapons, such as the club, can also be charged up to deal extra damage, or to reveal hidden areas and new paths in the environment.
Dan is also equipped with a shield for defense, which he can use only occasionally, on account of the shield having a limited amount of strength. Dan’s life bar can also be extended by collecting Life Bottles, which are items that automatically replenish his health to varying degrees if he ever falls in battle. There are also gargoyles spread throughout the game that Dan can visit for various purposes. Green gargoyles provide Dan with useful information, while blue ones sell him services or ammunition in exchange for any treasures he finds.
There are also Chalices of Souls hidden throughout the game. Each level has a single hidden Chalice, which players can earn by fulfilling various required conditions (such as clearing a certain number of enemies in a level). Collecting the Chalice in a level lets Dan visit the Hall of Heroes, where he can collect rewards such as new weapons from legendary fallen heroes. Meanwhile, collecting all Chalices in the entire game unlocks the game’s true ending.
The 2019 PS4 MediEvil remake also makes some changes to the game. In addition to a graphical overhaul, MediEvil on the PS4 also has a new narrator, with the game now being narrated by veteran voice actress Lani Minella. The game also adds a new camera system as compared to the one that was seen and used in the original PS1 release in 1998.