Project Altered Beast, also known as Altered Beast in Europe and Jūōki: Project Altered Beast (獣王記 Project Altered Beast) in Japan, is a 2005 action/adventure, beat 'em up video game for the PlayStation 2. The game is a modern take on the original 1988 arcade game Altered Beast. While the gameplay still involves the main character transforming into different kinds of beasts like in the original, the story, characters and setting is completely different, along with notable gameplay additions. The game was released in Europe and Japan in 2005, but was cancelled for North America. The game received mixed reviews.
Unlike the original Altered Beast, which is set in Ancient Greece, the game features a modern setting unconnected to the previous installments. The story follows a man called Luke Custer who is a "Genome-Cyborg", a human whose DNA and other genetic make-up has been artificially altered, allowing micro-chips containing the genetic make-up of other creatures to transform him into an anthropomorphic beast. After surviving a helicopter crash, Luke loses his memory and sets off to learn about the truth behind his past and the Genome-Cyborgs.
The player controls Luke Custer in a third-person perspective as they battle through multiple enemies in close combat to reach the next objective, utilizing the ability to transform into different beasts, each with somewhat of their own element, for a certain amount of time. Unlike the original game, the player can transform in and out of their beast form at will when available. Initially from the start Luke can transform into a Werewolf (Element|Light), yet further into the game, he finds more Genome-Cyborg DNA chips allowing him to change into even more different kinds of beasts including a Merman (Element|Water), Garuda (Element|Wind), Wendigo (Element|Ice), Minotaur (Element|Fire) and Dragon (Element|Thunder). While each beast has their own different sets of attacks, they also have abilities that are essential for overcoming obstacles, puzzles and boss fights that hinder progression.
Upon finishing the game, a number of other modes are unlocked including time trial boss fights and a challenge mode that can also unlock further beast forms including a White Weretiger (Element|Darkness), Werebear(Element|Earth) and an alien-cloned U.W.H. (Unidentified Weightless Human) (Element|Gravity).