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on November 03, 2013 at 07:11 AM
FOR A PLAYTHROUGH OF THIS GAME,
The long-awaited game has finally come, and it’s well worth the wait. Dishonored is a game that is unique in the fact that you develop yourself as a player and really shape the story’s outcome.
The initial story of Dishonored is simple. You are Corvo, the esteemed bodyguard for Empress Jessamine Kaldwin and her daughter, Emily. After coming home from a voyage, Jessamine is killed by mysterious assassins while you are rendered immobile by mysterious powers of theirs. By the time the fellow rulers arrive to the scene, the assassins have fled, kidnapping Emily, and you are shown cradling the Empress in your arms. Corvo is then blamed for her death and sent to prison to await execution. But a mysterious stranger allows him to escape and gives him the means to exact revenge. That’s when the story really takes off, and gets a much deeper side to it. A mysterious deity called the Outsider visits you and grants you mysterious abilities to utilize throughout your mission. You side with a rebel group called the Loyalists, and begin to unseat the new Lord Regent from his throne and find Emily again. Taking out those who keep him in power is very interesting, as it allows you to see how many are important to him and why. The game gives you choices throughout the story, and it’s awesome to see the amount of variety present. There is always a choice to kill your assassination targets or remove them without harm. But that choice is up to you, and will determine your outcome. Personally I chose to be more violent and direct, versus stealthy or even nonviolent. The game’s ending and events leading up to it will be influenced by your playing style, and this offers up a lot of replay value to see what the different results will be. There are a few unexpected twists that I won’t go into detail on, but they definitely keep your game experience fresh and exciting. The ending, however, is very short and delivered in a cutscene. It makes the game experience seem abruptly ended, and is slightly disappointing to have your whole game end in a span of two minutes or so. But this doesn’t change the effect the game has on you.
+Story changes depending on play style
+Interesting and exciting story
-Short and unrewarding ending
I wish that the characters were as interesting as the game itself. There were a few unique characters that appeared throughout the game, such as Granny Rags and Slackjaw, but the problem I had was with the characters that appeared the most often. They are basically a stereotype of what you’d expect in a rebel group. You’ve got Admiral Havelock, who is the stern and demanding leader of the group. Then you have Treavor Pendleton, the right-hand man, born into nobility and carrying a pompous arrogance. Corvo himself never speaks but a few silent lines, which makes him seem less alive than most of the other people surrounding him. But as I said, there are a few interesting characters who show their faces. Granny Rags was a VERY interesting and mysterious character, and left me wondering just how important she was to Dunwall long ago. Slackjaw was also a fellow I couldn’t help but like, as he reminded me of a circus ringmaster and kept me guessing how much of an impact he had on the city as well. I had mixed feelings over the Outsider, as it was never shown just why he chose me or what his motives were. At times he praised my deeds, other times he criticized me. I wished that he had been developed a little more, as I would have liked to figure out what he really was and why he was in Dunwall.
+Certain engaging characters along the way
-Bland people overall
-Lack of background of the Outsider
There’s no denying it, Dunwall is grim and beautiful. The environments are varied with each assassination target and all come together to make an amazing city. The best part about it is that the city changes as you play. You can clearly see it fall apart if you play more violently and cause unnecessary deaths, or it will stay upheld if you go about the game nonviolently. Either way, it’s incredible nonetheless. My personal favorite place was the Hound Pits Pub. It was in shambles, put together from old dumpster pieces and rundown signs, but it really looked like a place that would exist in a city like Dunwall. Each environment has its own secrets that are up to you to explore, and it’s a real treat to do so.
+Beautiful and well-developed environments
+Variety between places
+Secret places to explore
Dishonored is one of the best games that I’ve ever played in terms of gameplay. Everything from moving to fighting is enjoyable and well done. You traverse Dunwall by parkouring, which in this game is a combination of great leaps and short-range teleportation, or “blinking”. Everything in the city is climbable, and so enjoyable to do. As you progress through the game, you find magical runes carved from the bones of dead whales. These runes give you access to powers unique to you and your play style. You can stop time, teleport, possess others, summon rats, etc. Each power can be upgraded once, and once they are, it is a dramatic difference. You can’t get all of the powers in the game upgraded all the way, so it’s up to you to find out what’s important to you. Your abilities (as well as your health) are fueled by potions, which you’ll find or be able to buy from characters. Similar to runes are bone charms, which give little perks that come in handy, such as running silently and finding more ammo than usual. You can hold up to eight at your prime, and they come in handy. Fighting is done by a combination of weapons and abilities and is very versatile. In your right hand you carry a sword, but in your left hand, you can choose between ability and weapon. Examples of weapons are the quiet crossbow, grenades, a pistol, and spring razors, which are deadly mine-like razor blades. Combat is fluid, and by using a combination of your tools, enemies are overwhelmed. There are a variety of enemies, which have their own unique tools available to them. You will have to figure out just how you want to deal with them, which can be done very creatively. The game allows for so many combinations of powers and weapons, but it’s up to you to figure out which will be the most effective. In that sense, it is the most entertaining part of the game. But that being said, you have the opportunity to move through the game without killing anyone or even being seen! I’ve already said this plenty of times, but it’s really up to you.
+So many options to play with
+Parkour and movement is phenomenal
+You choose what abilities suit you
Dishonored has a very interesting graphic style that is an art form in itself. A blend of realism and a caricature-like painting gives the game a unique atmosphere and feel. The features of characters are exaggerated slightly, which gives an animated feel. The whole world is gritty and remarkable, and even though places are unique, it all comes together phenomenally. From the slimy streets to the sun glaring through the broken windows, the attention to detail is perfection. The world may not look so realistic but it wraps you up in it and is very much alive. I loved every part of it and want to go back and revisit it all!
+Diverse and unique
+Excellent job on the characters
+Beautiful and well put together world
The mood of the game is captured so well through the sound. In the sewers, drips are heard overhead. When being chased by rats, the eerie violin music intensifies leaving you feeling tense and giving the feeling of fight-or-flight. The music in the game is a neat blend of old and obscure, giving the city just what it needs to match the overall feeling. Voice acting is very well done, and the characters all fit well into their society. Overall I had nothing more to ask for, as it put me into the game.
+Sound gives the game its mood
+The music and effects capture you
+Well-voiced actors that fit into the story
Dishonored was much more than a game for me. It was a personal experience, as I felt that I had a great impact on the game as a whole. Dunwall wrapped me up in its mystery and rewarded me for exploring. I can say without hesitation that I can’t wait for more from Dishonored and I plan on going back in shortly. This time, I’ll try a different playing style and see what happens. There is so much replay value and variety that I’m sure you’ll fit right in and love it!
TOTAL RATING: 9
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