Saturday, July 19, 2008

Mirrors Edge Developer Commentary Disappoints Me

There are a lot of games where I see some kind of preview of the game and from that little snippet I build-up a picture in my head on what the game will be like to play and how the mechanics will work etc. So I can run through my head what it will be like to play just from seeing a very small preview. Sometimes the finished game surprises me and I am delighted and other times the reality of playing the finished product falls short on my expectations. I am sure you too do this.

The concept of Mirrors edge is that of a very clean line art style set in a city where all communication is closely monitored by the state. Because of this runners are paid to carry sensitive information across the city by hand so that the authorities don't get their hands on it.

The game takes the concept and some of the style of Freerunning into itself. This combined with the Currier missions made me think that missions would be given very much like they where in Thief and Assassins Creed. Where you got missions by talking directly to hidden contacts or by finding clues and markers left for you. However for some reason Mirrors edge features a radio, which for me breaks the whole anti-surveillance thing as obviously the state could listen into the radio. They will probably have a plot point that says that the radio transmissions are encrypted, but to me this is nowhere anywhere even close to being as cool as getting a mission from a set of cryptic symbols on a hidden bit of paper, or getting a mission by meeting someone secretly hoping the authorities doesn't find out.

Plus as much as I love story being feed to me during a mission as I am playing through a level, the crackly radio doesn't fit the visual styling of the game.