The lights are on
Besides being a well polished, playable game, Binary Domain has some really great attractions that keep it from being totally tagged a clone of other third person action shooters. The voice recognition system has been reviewed as one of those attractions and has been criticized by reviewers as being somewhat frustrating. I agree. But they didn't tell you that you don't have to use it. On XB360 you can do all commands and responses with the Left Bumper and a dropdown choice . . . and it works very well. That's how I played through it twice already. So don't let the voice recognition thing keep you from playing this cool sci-fi shooter.
The main attractions to me have been: a solid intriguing Robot vs. Humans story (with some good twists), a nice full 10 hour campaign, good and plenty checkpoint placements, a creatively simple to use character's ability enhancement/perk routine, and tons and tons of robots that are as fun to shoot as anything you've encountered before. The boss robot fights are plentiful and well placed in the story. The game's designers and artists have created stunningly detailed, huge, robot bosses in the forms of spiders, birds, transformer-like biped monstrosities, a cerebus beast dog, a giant tentacled robot chandelier, robot monkeys, etc., and there are even "robot zombies" in this game . . but there is a 4 part chase sequence that takes place mid-story that has the mother of all robot beasts . . . this beast is an enormous melding of giant motorcycle and a dragon and this mutha does not come down easily, in fact he'll be high-speed chasing you totally in flames! It is really a spectacular part of the game. . . all the way to the final boss fight, these robot bosses will thrill you and kill you. . . if you don't figure out how to kill them.
So what's the downside? Why do I rate it an 8.5 then and not higher. Well first of all 8.5 is a really good score and this game well deserves it . . .but there are a few frustrations and design elements that keep it from a greater score in my opinion: 1) the cover system. yes it's like GOW but it's a bit too sticky and got me killed a few times too many as I tried to smoothly shoot and evade the big bosses. I'd stick into cover when I didn't want to and roll out to run only to stick into something right next to it. You have to use the cover system a lot to survive in this game and too many times it just didn't do what I wanted it to do. 2) although a minor irritant, there are a few navigating and button pushing sequences that you have to do to proceed in the game and if you don't do them perfectly you will die, and die I did (ie: high-speed sliding down a water shaft, speeding thru a canal on a mini jet boat, jumping from a burning trailer, a detached train, running down a hallway that is collapsing, etc.). 3) no game+ after completeing the game. . . you spend an entire game builing up your character in normal mode and there's no option to carry him over to the next game to go at it in "Survivor" mode, the toughest mode. I really would liked to have that option available.
Don't let my small gripes keep you from playing Binary Domain. It is a very fun sci-fi shooter with excellent graphics and story, a long, fulfilling single-player campaign, decent online multiplayer play, and all the robots you'll ever want to do battle with! SEGA did a good one here!
I agree. This game rocked!
Nice review. Very informative. I have yet to check this game out, but reading this review gave me some hope on it's quality. Maybe I'll get it on the PC when it releases on that platform. Thanks. :)