Reviewed: Mirror’s Edge

Let me first explain something about my review process. I review things as I come to them, not as they are released. I’m generally too cheap or too lazy to go get new stuff all the time, I read or watch whatever I find when it gets to me. Mirror’s Edge was released over a month ago and just about everyone has complained about it and moved on, but not me, deal with it.

I really really wanted to give Mirror’s Edge a good review. It was the only game released this year that tried something different, and the demo was excellent, but it seems that that was as far as they got with the polishing. Don’t get me wrong, I had fun with the rest of the game, but it had a tendency to annoy the hell out of me at certain points that I just cannot forgive it for. One thing this game sorely misses is a quick save, and maybe that will be in the PC version, but on the PS3 you’re left to respawn wherever the game feels like putting you, it can either be right where you were, or miles back, it tends to put you further back at the more difficult parts. The story is lacking, it might have been better off without it, and the cut scenes look like esurance commercials, they jar you from the game’s otherwise clean appealing graphics. They would have done much better to keep you in the first person the whole time, Half Life style. One of the things I did like about the game was the camera, the motions and flailing limbs at the edges of the screen really put you in the game. A friend of mine sitting next to me pointed out that I was rocking back and forth on the couch as I swung from bar to bar. It was a lot of fun when you knew what you were doing and could string together a bunch of moves, but that would undoubtedly bring you to unfamiliar territory in which you would fumble for another five minutes before again managing to fluidly complete the next section. The combat was also annoying. The game makes a big show of teaching you how to punch and kick, but I hardly ever used them. In almost all cases using disarm is the best option, not only do you take out the enemy in one fell swoop, but you take their gun as well. When enemies are shooting at you, they have unlimited ammo and could fire at you forever, although a moment is all that’s necessary to take you out, but as soon as you pick up the gun you have one clip, and it runs out fast. Your accuracy at long range is non existent, it is very easy to fire at a far off target only to run out of ammo without hitting them once and leave a long empty space between you and your ever firing opponent. I liked it when there where one or two enemies in your path that you could work into your routine, treating them like any other solid obstacle, but the game occasionally presents you with an area with a number of enemies and not a lot of room to maneuver, which is annoying and doesn’t fit with the play style the rest of the game has.The motion sensing is insensitive, so for the most part I went with the button controls, but in the case of rolling, even that barely ever worked. The game wanted you to hit the button as you approached the ground, but not too close, finding this magical sweet spot eluded me for the entirety of the game, it seemed to work when it felt like it. Here’s a clever metaphor I came up with: EA is a student, and Mirror’s Edge is a paper they have handed in to me, the teacher, entitled Someday I’ll Be President. In order to not crush this child’s dreams forever I write good effort, but know that this child will never ever be president (although good effort seems to be about all it takes these days, but that would be admitting that Bush actually put effort into being president, which I doubt he did). The paper, although of good substance, is poorly written and full or grammatical errors.

Although I have mostly complained about this game, I really did enjoy it, and look forward to a hopefully improved sequel. Final score: 75/100.

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