I don’t necessarily want to step in the trap of mentioning the same game multiple times, just because the devs decided to release it in an episodic format in part just to achieve this exact result, BUT I really like Dreamfall Chapters so far and despite them taking 5 months to finally release Book Two, it at least is super long, like almost 4 times the size of Book One and this basically makes up for the epic waiting period and/or explains it.
I’ve read they don’t intend to have the other parts be that big, so I’m hoping that will also translate into shorter waiting periods.
These two parts already took me longer to finish, than a whole Telltale season. That’s great and goes beyond what they initially promised during the KS campaign. So if they manage to finish all parts, everyone wins.
MSS is, gameplay-wise, between a “normal” game (think e.g. Deus Ex) and an interactive movie such as The Wolf Among Us. There are not as many gameplay mechanics and elements as in the typical PC game and yet it’s not completely on rails as the typical Telltale interactive story/movie is. I suppose some people have issues with such games (there are also tons of cutscenes), I don’t at all (if the story is good/well told). Besides, I knew what I was getting myself into, so there were no unpleasant surprises waiting for me.
As someone who’s so used to controlling games with keyboard + mouse, I chose the gamepad this time and it was the right decision. I thought the gamepad really added to the experience here. Every single time Ronan walked through a wall, the pad would vibrate, which was the perfect use for this feature.
Though there was wasted potential here (isn’t there always?) I wouldn’t want to criticize the game for allowing players to walk around freely – this is really the main difference between this and a TWD game.
Will I play this again? Probably not, but this doesn’t mean all that much anymore, given the endless flood of new (okay or better) games, which prevents playing pretty much anything again. I did enjoy MSS. I would prefer playing such a game over watching TV (the thing with ads people used before the Internet) any day. Certain shows (that were produced for TV) excluded, of course (but obviously you don’t need a TV/TV for those).
If they were to develop a sequel, it should contain more gameplay elements, maybe some choices and optional dialog perhaps. MSS does have a few scenes in which the player can select dialog “options”, but they are all selected in iteration. The next option shows up only, after the previous one was selected, so there wouldn’t even have been any need for different buttons, a single “talk” button would have sufficed. Worse, therefore these instances could have been mere cutscenes just as well. It’s more like a dead mans switch to check if the player is still alive.
I just have to ask – has Square money troubles? It seems like they have all their games on sale like every week right now. I just bought this for -80% on Steam and now it’s on Humble. Well played guys!
HA opens up right away very triple a-ish, everything and especially the cutscenes look rather impressive and are generally fun to watch. There are several levels that take place in larger areas amongst crowds of people. You literally don’t see that in many such 3D games. This is so rare! Even true open world games (GTA/Sleeping Dogs) usually don’t have so many character models walking around simultaneously.
The level of detail is also very intense, in all the missions/levels/areas. The graphics have so many, even tiny, details, that the player can always catch at least the glimpse of something. Not many games pull this off.
The rest of the content made me sometimes feel a little let down, because there isn’t really much of a story or anything else going on. This clearly isn’t Deus Ex with its emails and news bits and pieces everywhere, that also tell stories to complement the world the player is in. No, HA is not that type of game at all, but it doesn’t want to be. Here the pure game mechanics are the main event. Sneaking, being stealth, finding the smartest way to complete the mission. This is where players will be divided. I personally prefer much more the Deus Ex type of experience. The game mechanics are robust enough and are appropriate for the HA gaming experience the devs must have intended, but I can’t keep myself from thinking that the game could have been a lot better, if the levels would have contained more than just hostiles to evade or take down. The only thing except that, is to collect “evidence”, but this will only grant points and not even have a short text giving an idea of what this evidence might have contained. It’s a mere gameplay device and collecting one single piece of evidence therefore doesn’t differ from collecting any other – nothing can be learned from them, or done with them.
The campaign has a decent length of about 20 hours and I haven’t played any of the contracts so far. I feel like I have to try this at least once before uninstalling. All the ~100 DLCs sold for this game are also only available for the contract part of the game and are absent from the campaign completely – as I had to find out when I started playing.
I have never played another Hitman game, so I unfortunately cannot compare, I only heard this one played somehow different than the earlier titles.
It’s also another case where I’m seriously asking myself if some of the Steam features aren’t going too far, because the game displays the scores of other people from a player’s friends list at the beginning of every mission. I don’t want to know that other people have 10 times the score in the same mission! :P Besides, I bet no one was aware that it would be handled this way. It’s probably deep inside the user agreements somewhere, but obviously no one ever reads those. ;)