The Order: 1886 . Dark Knight rises to take on the monsters of Victorian London
Of all the Playstation 4 exclusive games released so far, perhaps the greatest expectation has been placed on the shoulders of The Order: 1886. First announced in 2013, there have been suggestions that development started several years before that. Its hyped release has been a long time coming.
So is it any good? Well, it has one of the freshest, most involving storylines in modern gaming, which is a good start. Set in a dingy, smog-ﬁlled Victorian London, the type often seen in Sherlock Holmes and Jack The Ripper dramas, The Order: 1886 sticks to many of the tropes of the time, albeit with a slightly skewed grasp of real-life historical events. This is an alternative English capital where artistic licence is acceptable – werewolves and knights of the round table roam the streets, zeppelins command the skies. There’s also a dodgy accent or two.
You assume the role of Sir Galahad, who unravels a sinister plot amid mysterious goings-on and numerous
twists and turns. We’re not giving any secrets away but what can be said without holding back is how beautifully this Cinematic tale is presented.
This is undoubtedly one of the best-looking games for this generation of consoles yet. The facial animation on the main characters is unsurpassed in gaming. And as action and cut-scenes have been interspersed seamlessly throughout, you never get the feeling they are pre-rendered.
The cinematic tone is further enhanced by the game being entirely presented within top and bottom black bars to give the impression of a movie’s aspect ratio. Smoke effects – of which they are plenty – more than likely benefit from the reduced resolution.
Ultimately, though, it boils down to the gameplay. The Order: 1886 utilises a cunning blend of Gears of War’s cover-based, third-person shoot-’em-up style, puzzle-adventuring and stealth, switching between them depending on the scenario. This keeps things interesting throughout the campaign, which is just well as there is no multiplayer mode to fall back on.
Nonetheless, the payable filmic nature is enough to captivate until the very last thermite bullet has been shot. And you will more than likely come out the other end feeling like you’ve taken part in a blockbuster that is superbly set up for a sequel. The Order: 1887, anyone?
Author: Rik Henderson
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