By: Isaias Frias
How do you measure awesomeness?
Before I dive into trying to review this game I just want to say that there is no spoilers following so you are safe to read. While I am on the subject though, if you have not played this game drop everything you are currently doing and do so at this time.
It’s quite simple: you’re a guy.. looking for a girl… some evil is trying to prevent you from doing so… on a floating dystopian utopia where all is not what it seems. This game is all about the story. It keeps you guessing and engaged in characters. The story perfectly lays out the world you are in. Keeps good pacing and in the end it blows your mind away. The only thing that I could say is bad about the story is after this game I wasn’t so sure how I could ever play another game knowing that the story will never be as good as this one and if there is one it will be a huge achievement for that developer. I have told people that if I could have played through the game without combat and only focus on story, I would have been completely satisfied with that… not to discount the gameplay in any way.
Here is the deal with gameplay in this game: it is solid shooting gameplay, the vigors are legit. I especially love that there are no real boss battles in this game (only 1 that would really be considered as such that I can remember). Skyline grinding is pretty awesome, you have never ever done something like this in a game. If you learn the control scheme of the Skyline gameplay it can work well to your advantage. The Vigors are very fun to use and fun to watch. You can combo them and shoot lightning at a bunch of crows you just sent out… creating electric crows that kill people. If that doesn’t convince you on the gameplay in this game then I don’t know what will. Let me warn you though: If you don’t stop to look at the small things, you will miss some big things.
The moment when you go through the clouds and first see the city of Columbia is absolutely breathtaking. The city and setting are so alive in this game. You walk around Columbia and think this is the perfect civilization to live in. Then the seams start to come loose. When I was playing it, the city is eerily beautiful. It reminded me of the city Truman lived in on the movie Truman Show. Columbia is so bright and cheerful, such a contrast to a lot of shooter games. Textures and character models look clean. Fire and Water particles look amazing. Let me also add that not all the game is set in a sunshine, happy Columbia. The settings change and the mood goes from uncomfortably cheery to dark and depressing… sometimes being downright creepy and scary.
Let me get this out in the open right now: I had no intention in buying this game and completing it so soon. I was going to wait a few moths or longer then buy it at a discounted price. Then, I heard the soundtrack. I felt the need to buy it.
Columbia is filled with life. If you closed your eyes you can still feel this life. There are cheerful kids playing, people having conversations and music in the background. The battle music really sets the tone of the moment. Then there are small moments when the music is just a whisper and sets the tone perfectly. Gun sounds have a good thud to them. The Sky-hook has a nice sound to it, I don’t know how to explain it other than “if it were a real device I could imagine that this is how it would sound”. This game comes truly alive in Surround Sound.
The only thing I can say is I wish it was just a game about story… the gameplay is solid but I am just wishfully thinking. It’s just too bad that the only way a story could be told to a lot of people is by putting it in a FPS game. Though, the first person perspective is the best way to tell a story like this, it puts you in the shoes of Booker Dewitt.
Buy this game. Play this game. Make your friends play this game.
5 out of 5 stars (if I could give it more I would)