Blackened Skull

There is no gene for the human spirit

Posts Tagged ‘Dishonored

Low chaos thoughts on Dishonored

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For a game that I nearly passed on, Dishonored has given me a good innings. It runs a close second to the game I consider the best of this year so far. If I had felt a little more attachment to the game-world and Corvo – I hate mute lead characters – then it would have been on par.

Saying that 2012 has been a patchy gaming year for me. Dishonored is the first full game I’ve completed since Mass Effect 2 back in March. So that says something for how well the game was developed. Other than the ‘Blink’ ability that has Corvo manoeuvre the world like a cat after catnip, the other standout feature was the way NPCs would be dynamic to how you approached them. I found the dialogue of those one-sided conversations excellent but would have been far more enriching if Corvo had a speaking role.

Low Chaos then. It did seem the obvious choice really. That’s not to say I ran away or hid from every situation. I found Low Chaos more in keeping with the way I like to play but when things did go wrong I rolled with it. If you employ that type of play-through yourself just make sure you remember to save your game and save it often!

Next up is AC3…

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Written by David Osbon

October 30, 2012 at 9:49 pm

Posted in Videogames

Tagged with , ,

Early Dunwall

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When I recently posted about being a traditional gamer I had hopes that Dishonored would give me the scope to be that gamer again. Let me explain a little more what I class as traditional gaming and why I allude to being that type of gamer.

I prefer the single-player only experience. When I look at a prospective game purchase and see that the development team have opted for Co-Op and/or multiplayer that’s when I get nervous. I believe the SP element of a game gets sold-short once a multiplayer option is introduced. Gameplay within SP seems to always lose out to the longevity of including MP or Co-Op. Having a structured, linear but also a bold world is how I consider good traditional gaming to be.

So going back to Dishonored where, in my short time in Dunwall, I have played through the opening stages in both high and low chaos. I have to say I enjoy the sneaking and less-lethal way that is low chaos to the full on rampage that is high chaos.

The interaction with the world is good and the early quests introduce important allies that will aid you, as Corvo, by finding Lady Emily. Piero Joplin, an NPC who invents your weapons and upgrades, is excellently voiced by Brad Dourif and is my current fave NPC with Granny Rags a close second.

Dishonored has had a few nice touches and surprises already and the game has been shown love by Arkane Studios. Art direction is superbly imagined and it’s no-wonder why really when you have Viktor Antonov involved.

More to come as I get further in. How’s it been for you?

Written by David Osbon

October 15, 2012 at 11:24 pm

Traditional not transitional gamer

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This a game without the bloat of the modern blockbuster – no co-op mode to allow two friends to assassinate hand-in-hand; no lip-service multiplayer to distract the development team and divert their budget; no upgradable hub to grow or furnish; no open world to impress and weary. Rather you’re given a series of handcrafted missions, each with its own optional twists and turns, each with a start, a middle and an end, the plot written by a designer, the script penned by a scriptwriter and the narrative transcribed by you.

– Simon Parkin, 8th October 2012

The above extract is from the Guardian’s review of Dishonored. It easily sums up how I like my videogaming experience when I get the opportunity. I say that because most videogame titles released today are now a mixture of SP, MP and Co-Op. The sum of those parts don’t often make for a better experience. I prefer a standalone single-player game where developers have not seen their imagination soured by the publisher and their marketing tick-box.

Dishonored will be the first purely SP first-person game that I have played for some time. I really am looking forward to the experience and it got me thinking…what have been my favourite pure SP game experiences that I have completed on the current console generation?

Here’s just a few of those titles that I believe are worth mentioning…

Bioshock – 2K

My PC at the time didn’t have the minimum spec. to run Bioshock. I was disappointed and decided to buy a console and so ending the PC as a gaming format option for me.

Bioshock showed me that games could have meaningful consequences to players actions. It allowed the player to believe in the character and world around him. I applaud 2K because it did something that cinema and TV do well but gaming generally doesn’t – successfully show the passing of time. The above clip is the last scene in Bioshock – if you played nice – and bookends the story with a conclusion that leaves you with no ambiguity.

I mentioned in a recent post that I had a few topics that I hadn’t written-up but hope to soon. One of those topics – How do games approach the issue of ‘ageing’? – is something I wish to explore fully in a separate post but you can see that 2K weren’t shy about ageing your character to his death-bed in this last scene of Bioshock. Death and ageing are two key areas that I believe developers have been very lazy in their approach to. In a pure single-player game experience the topic of age and death could be big, big moments for the player and those moments shouldn’t just be just for allaying NPCs of their place in the story.

— Part 2 to follow —

Written by David Osbon

October 9, 2012 at 11:35 pm

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