The Darkness – random reviews, phase: 1

(Played on PS3)

This is a pretty neat single-player idea. I like when games present in first-person view when the premise seems to call for third-person. In other words, instead of going for the Infamous approach, they went for Mirror’s Edge/Half-Life. The game could have felt a lot more action-oriented, but because of the first-person, it comes across as a story-and-charcater-driven dramatic adventure.

The story is not the strong point. It’s either too odd, too confusing, or too uninteresting, I can’t exactly tell. But mob stories, in my opinion, have been out-of-style for a long time. The main bad guy is named Paulie… The movie, Goodfellas, has already dubbed that name a stereotype. The very last time the mob motif worked was in the first Mafia. I found it really strange that the main character is some Italian mobster, yet looks like a member of the Cherokee tribe. And who decided the mafia blends well with the themes of hell and demons? I guess those problems have more to do with the graphic novels… which I know nothing about.

The gameplay is pretty enjoyable, if you don’t mind gore. Switching between dual pistols, the demon power, and the goblin minions allows you to be creative in fights. You feel like an X-Men hero when ripping people to shreds, but like I said before, first-person makes it fee like a unique experience. And the graphics are rather nice. It has more to do with the reflective and detailed textures than anything else. A lot of the hell environments are neat concepts, and very often scary. The gameplay is not fun at all in those parts, but it looks nice.

What I enjoyed most about The Darkness are the little details. Like the people on the subway you can talk to who give you side quests. Spending time looking at stuff in the subway terminals was actually my favorite part of the game. And there was a moment in the girl’s apartment when the television was playing the actual movie, To Kill a Mockingbird. I wacthed about twenty minutes of it before I got bored. I still don’t know how much of it was actually included in the game.

I didn’t like when Jenny was shot in the orphanage. I didn’t agree with the decision to make the player watch that. Such an upsetting moment. The game, overall, too sadistic for my taste.


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