Tuesday, August 7, 2012

[REVIEW] Deadlight

Release Date: August 1, 2012
System Reviewed: Xbox 360
Plays Like: Shadow Complex; Limbo; Trine

What's Great: My kind of game. Deadlight is a classic 2D platformer that dabbles in action elements, but is more 2D than 2.5D, in that, the visuals and environments are fully 3D (much like Shadow Complex), but the game is strictly up/down, left/right movement. There are no upgrades to your weapons, but you do gather a handful of different weapons to work with, such as an axe or shotgun. The story, while a tad shallow, does pick up the pace later in; the twist, while some could guess at, is a nice surprise, one that hasn't been used all that often as of late.

What's (Not So) Great: Some puzzle solutions are not incredibly obvious, but not a huge hindrance. Climbing and jumping - key elements of a platformer - aren't as solid as you would hope, especially when it comes to climbing down, which has been my biggest issue; the window of opportunity to tell Randall when to grab a hold of a lower ledge is sporadic. The spoken dialogue is fucking horrendous, and the writing could be just a smidge better. Shadows (what this game calls their zombies) can be deadly when there are more than one, which is what it should be, however, several axe swings later, they still haven't lost a limb, their head, or at least fallen over; combat en masse is the burden to this game.

Bottom Line: This is a fun game, do not let others tell you otherwise. If you are a fan of classic platformers, you'll fall right in line here. This may be another post-apocalyptic zombie game, but a great, fresh take on the genre; don't expect anything like Left 4 Dead, but more akin to The Walking Dead episodic game currently out there, as it's more focused on story and exploration, rather than zombie maiming. It is fairly short, so some may have a hard time swallowing that $15 price tag. If need be, wait until a sale, but you may be kicking yourself in the ass when that sale comes, as you didn't experience this game now.

Grade: B-

(Downloaded the game from Xbox LIVE Arcade for the full 1200 MSP. Played the game entirely, earning all 30 Achievements, taking just under 2 hours to complete the game altogether.)

(Ed. Note: I updated the 'Plays Like' field to be more accurate; referencing 15+ year old games isn't necessarily a good way to do it.)