The lights are on
Simply one of the greatest video game experiences I've ever had. I would place it right next to the Zelda franchise as one of my favorite video games of all time. Many people like the reviewers at Destructoid say that it's good because it's so bad, which is sort of true. But I think it's good, simply because it's good.
Now, the graphics. Not the best part of the game. But, I have one thing to say - graphics don't make the game. If anyone can play an older game like Resident Evil 2, and still consider it great, I don't understand why they couldn't do the same for Deadly Premonition. The controls are also questionable - I started the game frustrated and mad that I spent twenty dollars on something so slow. But, I felt that after the controls grew on me, I could control the game easier than anything else. I'm not saying they're good, but they don't remain a huge problem after you get into the game.
While these flaws may be present, if you can look past them, you will find something that is rarely found in the game market today - a game made with love. The developers may not have had the budget to make a blockbuster game like Call of Duty with realistic graphics, but man, they put all they had into this game. It's clear that the developers were big fans of David Lynch's excellent, surreal, 90's serial drama Twin Peaks. The plot, setting, and many of the characters resemble that of the show. Not to mention the weirdness of the whole game matches that of the show. The protagonist, Agent Francis York Morgan, is an enigma of strangeness. He takes advice from his coffee, has an imaginary friend, discusses serial rapists with his colleagues at dinner time, and is really bad with women, but he sure is funny. I enjoyed many hours driving my crappy car around as I listened to York babble on to his imaginary friend Zach about his favorite movies, including Superman, Jaws, Ladyhawke, Attack of the Killer Meatballs, Tremors, and Fast Times at Ridgemont High. He has also apparently taken the time to memorize the cast and crew to every film he's ever seen.
Another thing that Deadly Premonition offered is one of the best game worlds I've played in. I actually wanted to explore the city and find the many secrets in the game. There are also a ton of sidequests that can keep someone busy for days of playing time. And the story is absolutely great. The final chapters of the game are emotionally wrenching, and provide stark contrast to the earlier chapters of the game. When the credits ran, they made sure to thank the players for sticking through to the end of the game. But I think the developers are just as deserving of a huge thank you for providing the unforgettable experience that is Deadly Premonition.
Note: This game is not for everyone. Many will not be able to look past the foibles the game has to reach the pure enjoyment the game can offer. Those same people will then probably quit playing and return to something like Call of Duty, and never get to know Francis York Morgan.
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