Mirrors Edge Review


Adventure games are a dime a dozen nowadays, it seems like everyone and their mother are trying their hand at making the best adventure game on the market. But how many of them really innovate how the genre is played?
In steps DICE and changes the game, Mirrors edge certainly revolutionises the action/adventure genre.
How have DICE renovated a classic genre? By using a modern and urban way of movement, Parkour or freerunning as it’s better known.

Mirrors edge’s heroine is Faith and she’s a runner, what’s a runner? A runner moves information throughout a neo-tokyo style cityscape by using free-running to move throughout it’s structures. Everything is seen through Faiths eyes in a first person view and the only time faith is seen is in the cut scenes.
The art style found throughout the game is incredibly abstract, from the colours in the levels to the animation style in the cinematics.
Every surface in Mirrors edge shines with vibrant colours, even the interiors are bright and clean. The aesthetics can be harsh at times and tricky jumps can be made worse by the effects on the eyes.
The cut scenes are animated in an awkward cel shaded style, there are times when this style looks outstanding but they are rare. The majority of time the animation quality has a feeling of being unfinished with the character models features looking slightly out of place.

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The control scheme in mirrors edge are equally as unique as the gameplay, rather than using the face buttons for jumping, sliding and quick turning you use the shoulder buttons. This control system is surprisingly easy to get the grips of and feels very fluid when used right. The face buttons are still used for disarming guards and using slow motion to dodge attacks.
The combat in the game can be shaky as the aim is to avoid confrontations, So whenever you do get your hands on a gun it’s better to discard it than struggle with the aiming mechanisms. Hand to hand combat is where the movement engine really comes into it’s own. By combining actions like wallrunning and then leading to a kick on a guard, he will spin 180 degrees for an easy disarm.

Mirrors Edge really shines in the flair of the of the movement, When you pull off a string of actions you feel indestructible. There is an exhilarating feeling whilst sprinting across rooftops whilst jumping obstacles and sliding under hanging pipes. Set pieces throughout the levels are amazing, moments such as running up the arm of a crane to jump the gap between buildings and land on a stack of boxes for a safe landing will keep you on the edge of your seat. There are many moments of sheer joy when you safely land a jump by a whisker. The camera is used brilliantly during these moments, seeing faiths hands wave into view as she holds her balance or steady her momentum. This gives you a real feeling of panic as you slide down glass roof tops and jump gaps.

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The story is linear but feels as if it is being set up for a sequel, without giving anything away the story is slightly cliché once it gets going.
Once the game is finished you play through again on hard or “speedrun” the chapters in the game, the aim of which is to beat the level in under the times set by the developers.
Unfortunately there is no full online mode, but there is a time trial mode, You are given a level and you must work from point A to point B in the fastest time possible. At first you will just run through as best you can and then you will start to notice short cuts which will enable you to shave precious seconds off of your time.
Your time will then be added to the global leaderboards and friends leaderboards, this gives you a chance to beat times set by others or race against their ghosts in order to find new routes.

To sum up the experience in Mirrors edge, it does have minor flaws, but these can be overlooked because of the thrill of the movement. Using an engine that could quite easily be used in other action games, DICE have created a world that is a joy to move through.
With time trial DLC on it’s way and the unique achievements found within the game, you will be playing this for quite some time.
4-star Written by Strybe

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