When I saw the first screen shots of Mirror's Edge, I wondered why DICE didn't bother to put in any work into the obviously plain bright white buildings. It looks like they slapped on some ambient occlusion, increased the specularity, added a unique white washed lighting set up and called it a day. Maybe they were just showing work in progress. There's no way this is the final texture! Or am I just being picky? I am.
When I saw the Mirror's Edge demo on the Xbox Live Marketplace for download, I decided to put my judgments aside and try this game out. Even if my girlfriend and I both agreed that it looks like we would get nauseous every time we moved with this new camera angle DICE decided on.
First impressions of the demo? My first impressions of the screen shots were wrong. The controls took some getting used to, (Who the hell uses LB to jump?) but once you get the hang of it, it's actually a pretty smooth control set up. Now, one of the things I was worried about when I first saw gameplay videos was, yea.. the gameplay video shows this girl going from place to place, leaping from building to building with ease but most likely the person controlling this girl KNOWS where to go. They give you objects that show up bright red in the HUD and this is how they direct you to move throughout each level. So what happens when I don't see anything red and I don't know where to go next? The pace of the game will stall and then it just turns into a game of hide and seek with these red indicators. Where's the red object? Where'd it go?!
Well, that DID happen while I was playing the demo but it wasn't as big a deal as I thought it would be. I looked around when I got lost but soon it became pretty obvious where they wanted me to go next. I didn't have to wander for 5 minutes looking for my next jump like I was afraid of. If there is a game that would be described as linear, this is that game. But are linear games even a bad thing? I'm playing Fallout 3 right now and finding myself getting frustrated because of the lack of linear gameplay. Sometimes I just don't know where to go or what to do. Mirror's Edge seems to make it interesting enough to forget about the petty arguments of whether linear games are fun or not. It is what it is. I'm a skeptic but if the Mirror's Edge demo is what I'm supposed to base my opinion on right now, I'd say DICE impressed the hell out of me. Not many demos do that for me. Everything they put into this demo, from the story intro to the music they used.. it all leads to a very unique experience. I am sure they can turn this new IP into many great successes. DICE, cheers to you and good luck!
Saturday, November 1, 2008
MIRROR'S EDGE: DEMO IMPRESSIONS
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