As another new weekly feature for the blog either me or Alan will play an older game that we have either played or not played in the past. We'll do a post about our thoughts on the game and may sometimes even have some video footage of it. This week I've been playing the first Darksiders game, since Alan was reviewing the second one but neither of us had played the first I thought I'd have a go because it's important to have either first or second hand knowledge of the other games in the series or else you can't properly review a game.
The thing that struck me most about the game was the fact that it was new. In this day and age it's rare to see a new IP, games are usually sequels or reboots of older games but Darksiders was an entirely new IP and you have to respect Vigil for being able to do that. In terms of ideas though it doesn't really break any new ground, it's more a mash up of ideas from cool games than it is an entirely new idea and whilst this isn't necessarily a bad thing if you add some of your own fresh twists to the ideas in this games it is kind of a problem. See its clear that Darksiders draws heavily from games like God of War and The Legend of Zelda in terms of mechanics and design but it doesn't really add much of a spin on things so you have an eerie feeling of deja vu whilst playing the game and things get old fast. This makes it hard to feel motivated to come back and play more because you just feel like you've seen it all before. I was bored before I even finished the second level.
Fortunately though the story is pretty cool, War is trying to find out why the apocalypse has begun early and he is the one who is blamed for it. He's sent back to find out what's going on and sort the mess out. It's not hugely deep but it's entertaining and that's what matters most.
The problem though is that's really it's best feature, the design, as previously mentioned, is a little bit 'been there done that' and the controls are just awful. Whereas as someone like Kratos feels smooth and vicious in God of War, War feels slow, clunky and pretty much useless. It feels like you really have to put your back into things to get him to move and fight and even then things just don't feel right. The thing is is that at times it feels like the controls have been lifted from a PSOne game. Ouch.
So I really wasn't that impressed with the game, the story was cool but the level design was so-so and the controls are awful. The voice acting, soundtrack and graphics are all good, none of them are awe inspiring and all have been bettered but they are all satisfactory. Would I suggest buying it? Probably not to be honest, unless you really want back story for the second one (Alan's review for which is below).
Next week I'll be replaying Fallout: New Vegas.
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