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Sin and Punishment (JP) is a third-person shooter originally released in 2000 on the Nintendo 64 in Japan and the first installment in the Sin and Punishment series. In 2007 it was released on the Virtual Console for the Wii, marking the first time it was released outside of Japan. Set in the then-future, the game centers on Saki Amamiya and Airan Jo, two members of the Savior Group, an organization dedicaedt to protect the Earth from Ruffians and Armed Volunteers. A sequel, Sin & Punishment: Star Successor, has been released on the Wii in 2009.

Gameplay[]

Sin and Punishment is somewhat similar to the Star Fox series. A major difference between the two, however, is that S&P takes place entirely on foot, while the aforementioned games take place in the air (some portions in Star Fox 64, however, do take place on the ground in a tank and in the water). The second difference is that in Sin and Punishment, aiming and movement are completely separate.

The player can switch between two gun modes at any time. The first is the lock-on gun, which as its name implies will lock onto any of your opponents when the cursor is moved toward the enemy. The second is the manual gun, which is considerably more powerful though arguably harder to aim. Different situations may require use of different modes.

On the bottom of the gun is a "night stick", which is basically an advanced sword. While the sword is much more powerful than the gun (manual gun shots deal 1 damage per shot while the sword deals 20), it can only be used when going against enemies close to the protagonist. While it's most common use is close combat, some projectiles can be reflected with the sword, where it'll return to wherever the gun is aimed. The counter attack is the most powerful attack that the main characters can perform.

The two main characters are capable of jumping (single jumping and double jumping) and rolling, which can allow the character to get extras or roll out of enemy fire.

During each level, a time counter will be placed at the top and will slowly decrease as you play the game. If it reaches zero, then the characters' health will start to decrease. The player can, however, find special bonuses that'll increase their time.

Development[]

Development began in 1997. When the N64 was first released, there were two ways to hold the N64 controller, holding the two left grips and holding the two right grips. The popularity of Super Mario 64, which used the latter method, popularized it with other N64 games. Treasure president Masato Maegawa thought the left side position was underutilized, and would make for an interesting game.

In early stages of the game's development, the team had "absolute minimum" staffing, with two programmers and two designers. By the end of development, more people worked on the game than any other Treasure product.

Sin and Punishment was Treasure's first attempt at a 3D action game, while in the past they were mostly known for 2D games. Hitoshi Yamagami, the director from the Nintendo side of development, said that Treasure was difficult to work with and was a "weird" company. Yamagami considered an early prototype of the game too difficult, to which Treasure responded that he should not be directing the project if he isn't skilled enough to play it. Near the end of development, the difficulty was eventually decreased.

Plot[]

Background[]

The year is 2007. The world's population has prospered, leading to a shortage of food. In order to solve this crisis, Japanese scientists on the island of Hokkaido have bioengineered a new mutant species as a food source. However, these creatures soon turn on their creators, and terrorize Japan. The beings are known as Ruffians. To tackle the threat, the United States has sent in a military organisation named the Armed Volunteers, led by a man called Brad with strange powers. However, the Armed Volunteers are corrupt and murderous, and are oppressing the Japanese. The final participant in this three-way war is the Savior Group, a group of rebels who fight both the Armed Volunteers and the Ruffians. The Saviors are led by a woman named Achi, who has strange powers of her own. Achi offers salvation to those who join her cause. The game's story is divided into three acts, and is told in optional cutscenes between gameplay sequences.

Story[]

A group of rebels has been murdered, and Achi, Saki Amamiya and Airan Jo, (the three most important members) must steal an Armed Volunteers transport to escape Tokyo. As they reach it, they meet a huge quadruped Ruffian, Radan, who attacks Saki but is eventually killed. A woman called Kachua, a commander of the Armed Volunteers, appears and reveals that Radan was her research project. She attacks Saki but is defeated. As she falls from the roof, the city is flooded in a sea of blood, which Saki and Kachua are sucked into. Both of them then mutate into gigantic Ruffians. Saki kills Kachua, but not knowing who he is or why he is there, he turns on Airan and Achi, smashing the transport. Achi teleports Airan to safety.

The second act begins with Brad in his ship, upset over the loss of Kachua. He reveals that Radan and Kachua were the women he passed his blood to. Airan and Achi then land on the same ship, after Achi teleported. After hearing an intercom broadcast from Brad, Airan discovers he is the leader of the Volunteers and decides to hunt him down. After a brief fight, Brad reveals his powers were given to him by Achi through a blood transfusion. Achi tells him that she never thought he'd try to make friends and breed Ruffians with his blood. She then rips out a part of the floor with her mind, and pilots it around the Armed Volunteer fleet, while Airan destroys everything they pass.

After killing Brad, Achi tells Airan that to change Saki back into a human they will have to open Saki's chest and Airan must call to his heart - as long as Saki wants to be with her, he can accept his humanity. Shocked at the notion of cutting open Saki, Airan angrily refuses. She then finds herself on an out-of-control, Ruffian-infested subway on Long Island, in America, with a crying boy calling her "Mama." Shocked that Ruffians are invading America, she decides to head to the lead car. On the way she descovers that she is supposedly 10 years in the future and that the child is the future son of her and Saki.

She sees Saki and shoots, and is instantly brought back to the real world, where she has just fired at monster Saki's forehead, stunning him. Achi proceeds, and Airan asks her what her objective is. Achi says that she cannot defeat her true enemies with Saki's current powers. The entire crisis has merely been a simulation of a global war, and humans will live in a different world after the current one has been ruined. She also needs a reason for an even bigger war, which Saki will end, in order to establish him as a figure of power. Achi tells him that she originally planned to use Brad for her plan, and they had the same ultimate objective - Brad's transformation - but when Saki transformed, she decided to use him instead. She says Saki must grow powerful as a human, and with that she throws Airan into Saki's swirliing body fluids, and commands him to wake up and, with Airan in his heart, accept his humanity. He awakens, then teleports.

The third and final act begins with Airan awakening on a Ruffian-infested beach on the coast of Hokkaido. She is still half-asleep and unable to fight the Ruffians, but she is rescued by Saki, who is now part Ruffian and part human, but his personality and feelings are back to normal. After finding shelter in a building, they discuss what they will do next, but then Airan is abducted by Achi and taken to the heart of the Ruffian nest. Saki fights his way through hordes of Ruffians to reach Achi. Enraged at Achi's abuse of him for her own objectives, he smashes her in the face, sending her flying over a barrier and out of view. But then, Achi soars into the air, having had enough. Saki wakes up Airan, and transforms, with Airan in his heart once again. Achi tells him that she is going to replace the Earth with a replica of her own, and that she needs Saki to be the new world's ruler, but he refuses, and with the help of Airan, stops Achi once and for all.

After defeating Achi, Airan, and Saki decide to head to Honshu and take on the ruffians together. Achi is seen floating in space and reveals that Saki's son will inherit his powers.

Reception[]

On review aggregator GameRankings, Sin and Punishment had an 85.5% rating based on eight reviews.[1] Fran Mirabella III of IGN gave the game a 9/10 and called it a "tour de force" of arcade-style shooting action. Jeff Gerstmann gave it a 7.1/10, praising the game as a technical and artistic achievement, but criticized it for being too short and too easy.

Trivia[]

  • This is was the first N64 game released to the Virtual Console to receive a T rating.

External links[]

References[]

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