Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom is an action adventure game from Namco Bandai and Game Republic were you forge and alliance between man and monster to save a kingdom.

'Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom' has a 'Prince of Persia' meets the 'Shadow of the Colusus' vibe with a little 'Golden Compass' added for extra charm. This original buddy tale stars "Tepeu" the village thief who has a unique talent to converse with animals and magical creatures. Early on in the game, you will learn the basics of movement, investigate your surrounds, and get right down to the core experience, which is your eventual pairing with the Majin. The Majin is a giant magical guardian, who talks like a buffoon, but packs a serious punch. After saving the Majin from his imprisonment, it seems like you and the memory challenged Majin were destined to be together. With a stealth, one-two punch approach Tepeu and the Majin embark on their adventure to save a kingdom by restoring order to the land. The initial set-up takes some time before it picks up, so give this one sometime and you will likely be glad that you hung in there.

Perfect Strangers
As the tale continues you will likely grow attached to this odd couple pairing as they grow and share with each other. Strange enough, 'Majin' faintly feels like Namco Bandai's other co-op adventure that was released this holiday season in 'Enslaved.' Both have an organic feeling to them that seems to grow the more you invest in the game. While you're not going to be teaming up with a man named Pig to fight a legion of robots, you will feel the same sense of wonder. I wouldn't say Majin is deep "though provoking" material, but it has its place. That being said, the relationship is the key of the game, and it works. I felt invested in the journey, quite possibly the key to Majin's success.

The action in Majin, which has a more "adventure" feel than an "action" feel jumps from exhilarating spots to lengthy areas of near boredom. Even with Majin focusing more on the adventure, it does a decent job balancing both elements. The combat is your basic slash and doge action that you are used to, although the "X" factor is the massively imposing Majin who follows you like a lost puppy with iron fists. The Majin who can be controlled by direct commands or just left to fend on his own. Unlike most A.I., the Majin is actually capable of handling himself when not too outnumbered. The combination of Majin powerhouse and your fragile character is interesting and helps make the combat more interesting then it is. On the surface, sure, this is your typical action beat em' up, however, its touched up nice to make even little skirmishes feel impending.


Cleverly Crafted
The “adventure” aspects in the 'Forsaken Kingdom' is a mainly linear with an abundance of problem solving sections within a level haulting the player to solve them before advancing. These puzzles are usually fairly simply and involve flicking a few switches or using the Majin's powers to activate something. The teamwork focus of the duo really works here and thanks to some clever design, feels necessary. Just to note, not all of the levels are “clever,” but Majin can hold its own. In a way the levels have a retro-style design flair to them that you could have seen ten years ago in a game. Strangely, things that once made an impact, don't feel so innovate now, not to knock the game, but you've done this before.

There is also a RPG element to 'Majin,' which involves gathering items, collecting gems to build up your stats that includes a relationship "bonding" statistic. You can also unlock new items to equip, however they're infrequently found. The only real negative is that I couldn't really tell when Tepeu was getting stronger. Sure the game told me that my "stamina and strength" has been increased, but in action, I had no clue. Thankfully, the stamina bar increased, which makes me believe the game wasn't lying to me.

Traditionally Speaking
For the bad, Majin doesn't have too much going against it. The major complaint I would make it all the running around you have to do in order to get around the world. This along with the traditional use of solid checkpoint save markers feels like a step backwards, yet you will get used to it. Strangely, 'Majin' reminded me of 'MagnaCarta 2' with all its grand scheme, traditional navigation and save spots. Lastly, this one can be a little tricky at times. Usually the puzzles will be easy to figure out thanks to hinting around with the Majin's controls, but it might be too tough for younger gamers. You know, the ones that will be attracted to this title from its "cute" styled box art. Still, patience and returning with a fresh mind does wonders for 'Majin,' which might be a clue to the overall style of the game. No matter how much I was into the game, I could only play it in hour/ two hour bursts, for some reason it felt draining, yet fun. You're an odd one 'Majin.'

At Nite with an Oaf
The visuals in 'Majin' are solid with an interesting night/day cycle that transitions the visuals from a bright cheerful aesthetic to a wonder filled glowing atmosphere of the night. Like the content, the art direction does its best to pull out a fantasy element to the game. The 'Majin' himself is a big oaf who not only acts like a dolt at times, he sounds like one too. It's not horrible as he is a likable character, but it is easy to scoff at his dumbed down image. I guess if you're a big oaf you better have the intelligence to follow. Jeez, it's not like a mystical creature that has been around for hundreds' of years would have any brains... common now.

Digressing, everything (aside from the oaf persona) really works and is spectacular wonderful. Sure, the technical aspects might not be busting out the polygons, but you're not going to find too much complaining here. 'Game Republic' has created a wonderful world with care and atmosphere. The "stick out" feature would be the enemies who are like a cross between the new-old 'Prince of Persia' baddies and 'Twilight Princess' from the Zelda series. They are very creepy, interesting and not your typical orc brute, which is refreshing.


'Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom' is not going to replace your action adventure staples like "Zelda" franchise, but its has its own charm that is unique to this property, making it an excellent alternative to the more known action adventure styled games. It's too bad the marketing campaign for this title seems to be light because 'Majin' is a fairly solid title. While not everyone is going to fall into sync with its "magical kingdom" feel, the ones that do will be rewarded with a touching tale of an unlikely friendship blossoming over the typical tale of saving the land.

  • Interesting character design and dynamics
  • Characters and friendship can be upgraded
  • Story tries a little too hard, but it works
  • Combat is satisfying
  • The adventure has some slow spots
  • Puzzle sections might be too tricky for younger gamers
  • Traditional save points
Quote: "'Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom' is not going to replace your action adventure staples like "Zelda" franchise, but its has its own charm that is unique to this property, making it an excellent alternative to the more known action adventure styled games."
Reviewed by Downtown Jimmy | 12.17.10

Similar Games: Enslaved: Odyssey of the West (8.4) | Prince of Persia 2008 (9.2)


Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom

Namco Bandai

Game Republic

Action Adventure

US Release
November '10


PS3, X360

Players 1
HD 720-1080p
5.1 surround
D/L Content