Dishonored is the love-child of a raunchy dalliance between two giants of the gaming world: Bethesda, and Arkane Studios. The result of this whirlwind fling is a unique brand of first-person shooter game, jam-packed with a heavy dose of heart and soul. Further still, the immersive, industrial setting and authentic plot place this dystopian diva in a class of her own.
Perhaps, the extent of the challenge is the game’s greatest downfall. Albeit, the dark nature of its gritty underworld more than addresses this minor blemish. All in all, it’s a linear construct. Yet, the narrative lends itself to the wicked and at times wonderful world of Dunwall. So then, if the new year brought about a personal bucket-list, then this is a title that surely fits the bill.
In order to download Dishonored you need to click on the link provided at the end of this review. It has several DLCs: The Knife of Dunwall, The Brigmore Witches, Dunwall City Trials and Void Walker’s Arsenal which can all be downloaded as a part of Dishonored – Definitive Edition. And if you like games in which you are an assassin check out also Hitman 2 and Assassin’s Creed Origins.
The Game Review: A Dystopian Delight
The developers Arkane Studios pride themselves on immersive storytelling (check out their Call of Duty: World at War (2008) or Prey (2017)), these games often make use of beautiful level design and use the environment to good effect within a linear framework. In many ways, Dishonored makes good use of this formula, while adding something new to the action-adventure genre.
The story is a tale is of tragedy, love, loss, and revenge, which takes place in the steampunk inspired city of Dunwall. More still, this retro-futuristic whaling city is home to fowl oddities that lurk in the shadows.
Most of which don’t tend to play nice with strangers. What’s more, the graphics are superb, and the grubby pastel-based shades reflect the dark and dingy nature of the world in no small degree.
Whether that’s the slimy sewer systems, the dirty cobbled streets or the toxic waterways, each area looks and feels authentic. An industrial heartland riddled with plague and disease and ruled over with an iron fist by the harsh regime.
Another of the games stand out feats is its story. Gripping from start to finish, the player must repel the evil forces that plot against them after a “whodunnit,” Agatha Christie-style scenario leaves the masked-man guilty of murder, or so it would seem.
What’s worse, the victim in question is the Empress. A lady you once vowed to protect no matter the cost. Now, with those conspiring against your every move, an assassin is born. Well, a pretty cool one at that, with a lethal dose of badassery to match.
The Gameplay in Dishonored
The gameplay is by far and wide the most crucial facet here. That said, players can make use of a flexible system which promotes choice and consequence, in equal volume.
As a result, this creates a cause and effect loop. Hence, players can adopt an all guns blazing style of play, or they may prefer the cloak and dagger aspect to perform stealth kills. Although, you could just cut out the middle-man and sneak by without a single soul catching wind of you; the choice is yours.
However, each option comes with perks and pitfalls, depending on the mission. Also, the way in which you carry out each task has a direct impact on the story. Meaning, the game will play out differently based on your actions, and this helps to cultivate a greater sense of immersion. Just knowing this element of risk attaches a natural state of importance to each mission.
Better still, this game rewards the player for style and execution. For instance, stealth-based tactics grant unique bonuses in contrast to a trigger-happy approach, and vice versa.
Ultimately, it’s this level of choice that plants an idea in the players’ mind. Or at least the notion that they oversee their destiny to some extent, and this emotion is a hard nut to crack. So, hats off to the team for a stellar effort in this regard.
The Bottom Line
To conclude, this is a title that will appeal to all gamers on some level. Whether that’s caused by the wielding of supernatural powers, the performing of stealth kills or a voyage into the criminal underworld at the heart of this industrial metropolis, there is plenty of joy to be had amidst the horrors of Dunwall, if you’ve got the stomach for it, that is. Go forth at your peril, but beware, the dangers of Dunwall lurk in the shadows.
- Great Story