Failure Is an Option

I picked up Dishonored during the Steam sale this weekend and I’ve put a few hours into it.  Think a combination of Splinter Cell, Assassin’s Creed and Thief together.

Where in most stealth games there is but a single path, with perhaps a few options along with dozens of reloads, I find that Dishonored doesn’t follow that path.  You seem to always have ways to subdue enemies without killing them, even if they see you.  You have 2-5 different ways to get to your goal as well.  Heck, the goal isn’t even static as most quests give you a kill or don’t kill option depending on actions.

The difference is in the impact of the decisions.  Kill everyone and the world turns darker, with more rats and “zombie-like” enemies.  Play cleanly and the world gets brighter with less much around.  Combat isn’t easy by any means.  Some game have enemies queue up to kill you.  Dishonored sends 2 guys against you and odds are you’re going to die.  I like that mistakes aren’t instant death and that they are survivable but not so much so that I can simply walk around dancing and singing a tune.

From what I can tell, I’m about half-way through.  The mini-collection quests along the route (runes, charms, signs and paintings among others) make you hunt down odd passages and explore more than you would think otherwise.  If I were to ignore them and simply take the obvious route, I’d probably end up being a worse player with a more complicated experience.  It’s odd where a game is able to integrate this side-game without being a complete distraction (*cough*batman*cough*).

I’m having a lot of fun.  People should give this game a shot.  It hits all the right notes, has a good voice cast, interesting setting and smooth gameplay.  Happy hunting.

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