DEATHLOOP Review – I just want to break this fucking loop

In the nineties, the Groundhog Day was created, a romantic comedy in which the protagonist relived the worst day in his life again. Closing the time loop and restarting the day must be frustrating, especially when we face a streak of disappointment and failure again. DEATHLOOP, the latest game from Arkane studio (including Prey), puts the player to experience just such a groundhog day. However, our hero, Colt Vahn, does not intend to end this day sadly. At least the next time.

Arkane is known for many interesting projects with a great story, interesting setting and gameplay mechanics. A few years ago, we were delighted with Prey, which focused on the thrilling exploration of the Talos I ship. The Dishonored series is, in turn, one of the most visually stylish games of recent years. DEATHLOOP is another production that has an idea for itself and stands out from what we’ve seen in the games before. History stands out. Captain Colt Vahn wakes up on the island of Blackreef. At first he doesn’t know what’s going on, but the most important facts begin to emerge quite quickly. Blackreef, originally a fishing colony, became a military base for various experiments. At one point, Blackreef experienced a time anomaly in which all the inhabitants of the island relive the day. Eight so-called visionaries, i.e. people with unique powers, defend this state, and it is the former security captain, their old friend – Colt, who betrays them and wants to break the loop. Fortunately for him, there is a way to accomplish this task. Colt must kill all eight visionaries in one day. Our hero did not suffer from amnesia, so whatever he gets from each iteration will stay with him forever. The player’s task is therefore to discover as much information as possible, and then survive the day so that all visionaries die before the night comes. Julianna, the most cunning of all Colt’s enemies, watches over the unsuccessful breaking the loop. Her determination and well-written conversations between this couple will be the background of this story. At this point, I must praise Polish dubbing – exceptionally good, by the accepted standards. Meat is thrown away a lot, but it adds to its charm and only shows how dangerous and spoiled Blackreef is.

Read also: Gran Turismo 7 is now available for pre-order!.

So the player gets in the way of the loop, discovering new facts each time, which is one of the two most valuable things in the game. Blackreef is divided into four zones that we can visit at four times of the day – morning, noon, afternoon and evening. We can approach each zone in any order, it is only about combining facts and using them to your needs. If we know that someone picks up a thing at noon, we have to pick it up in the morning.My conclusion is that DEATHLOOP is a game with time that must be liked in the assumptions for the player to appreciate it. More than once I had to go back to given locations to finish another puzzle, but history absolutely makes up for it. There is also no such guidance by the hand, because the game will not directly show you where to look for some information. There are some puzzles that require our perceptiveness or thinking. Maybe I will not spoil, but trust me, you have to tire a bit. All the most important information is organized by area and by visionaries – so we don’t have to worry about missing anything. Therefore, day planning is quite simple and we can move up to 4 threads at a time during one of them.

Read also: Gambit Esports won the VALORANT Masters: Berlin tournament.

Visionaries, apart from being unique and having their own characters and stories that we get to know through notes, letters, audiologists, also have special powers that appear in the form of the so-called placards. After defeating them, the Colt is able to acquire these powers and then maintain them in subsequent iterations. For this you need to saturate every residual item that Colt absorbs from the various items scattered around the island and the visionaries themselves. In addition, Colt also absorbs medallions, which are modifications to our weapons. If you’ve played a roguelike, you know what we’re talking about and what the gameplay looks like. Colt can die up to two times during any given time of day. If he dies for the third time, the day automatically ends and we start in the morning, and the items gained, but not saturated with residual – are lost. So we have no reason to complain about boredom, because Arkane has made sure that Blackreef is a place full of possibilities. Although the locations are not large, they have quite a lot of paths, shortcuts and buildings, similar to the previous games of the studio. You can even “swim” around the island because well-designed levels favor different styles of play. Here, you can sneak and avoid traps, and you can easily wreak havoc using the abilities of Colt and visionaries. Each zone looks different at different times of the day, but Arkane took care of consistency in the world. Even a broken glass in the morning will be a broken glass in the evening. Little flavors, but they build the credibility of the world we are in. Moving on to the gameplay, DEATHLOOP is a typical shooter in which the corpse lays together densely. It’s possible to sneak, because I mentioned it before, but I think most players will go for strength. Not necessarily because of the likes and dislikes, but unfortunately because of the weak intelligence of the opponents. Fighting in DEATHLOOP is not difficult, the difficulty level is more determined by traps or turrets than an ordinary, simple opponent. The Colt can participate in an exchange of fire with one enemy, while the other one is standing passively by a dozen or so meters nearby.That’s why I came out victorious in most of the clashes, losing only in situations when my weapon jammed (annoying mechanics, I will not tell) or when the ammunition ran out when AI was outnumbered. In addition, you can be killed by automatic turrets, water (I’ve never drowned as many times as in DEATHLOOP) and falls from a height. Sometimes Julianna will come to help the opponents. The hunt then begins, and the tunnels used by Colt to move between the zones are blocked. The player must then unlock the security first, and only then will he be able to leave the location. Julianna can be played by … our friend. Possibly another player, but yes – DEATHLOOP has a network mode. It consists precisely in interfering with the other player in achieving his goal. Playing as Julianna, we must protect the loops and kill the Colt. If you don’t want anyone from all over the world to make your game uncomfortable, you can opt out of this feature and only the computer will control Julianna. Interesting idea that adds color to the game, but only if we actually play with another human being. Personally, I didn’t like the idea in single mode, because it often happens that we have to travel to the other end of the location in search of these security features. However, as a mode for “fun” – by all means.

Read also: Monsters destroy and save the world – review of the Blu-ray issue of the movie “Godzilla vs. Kong “.

I have to admit that I have not enjoyed playing this type of game for a long time, as in DEATHLOOP. Shooting may not knock down in itself, because there is nothing innovative about it, and the gun here is a remedy, but combined with powers, chopping with a knife, or the possibility of planting a kick in the … ass – I liked DEATHLOOP already. Turrets can be hacked, traps can be found, or a grenade can be thrown, for a long time nothing has made me so happy with eliminating computer opponents. You can also feel that with each successful iteration, our hero also becomes stronger, and we quickly start to know the locations on our own, even at different times of the day.

The aforementioned coherence of the world is also guaranteed by the great artistic style of the game. DEATHLOOP looks phenomenal – the authors focused on retrofuturism, inspired by the 1960s, which you can feel and hear at every step. The architecture of the island resembles one of the previous Arkane games, Dishonored. Sometimes it’s nice to stand still and admire Blackreef all around. Technically, it may not be a title from the PlayStation 5 era, but artistically everything defends itself. I have been playing the PC version, which unfortunately has problems. Not only me, but also many players, complain about errors leading to the game’s output to the desktop, some also experienced a drop in game smoothness (so-called micro stuttering), despite good hardware.DEATHLOOP has its own style, unique atmosphere, and shooting gives a lot of satisfaction. It’s worth it, you must get to know Colt, Julianna and the entire Blackreef Island. There is a lot of work here, a lot of loops are waiting for you and finally, the desired one, the best one – the last one. I wish you all to see it, good luck!

Read also: Dark Legends Descent – One game each.