Mirror’s Edge


Mirror’s Edge is one of those games I like a lot more than I should, like Shadow of the Colossus it takes a familiar concept and does something new and interesting with it to create a fully new experience (also like SotC it has a very distinctive and fitting visual style). It attempts to be sort of an acrobatic first-person platform game; the terrain traversals of the 3D Prince of Persia games seems vagely similar, and when it succeeds in doing this it is an absolute joy to play.

Problem is it doesn’t always succeed – much of this can be attributed to the fact that it is the first game of it’s kind, which is why I may be overly lenient in my liking of it. It is often very hard to judge what moves are actually possible, and combined with a poor sense of where you are supposed to go this gets infuriating at times. Checkpoints are occasionally very sparse, forcing you to replay mundane parts of a level. The worst part of Mirror’s Edge, though, is the combat. You are told to try and avoid confrontation which makes sense since you can take very little damage and it seems more or less random how often enemies hit you, but in far too many places you don’t have a choice but to fight a multitude of enemies at once – leading to many respawns and much frustration. But while these things provide the occasional tedious part, I liked most of Mirror’s Edge very much.

As for the presentation part, Mirror’s Edge is a stunningly beautiful game as far as aesthetics go, but it is not technically advanced. None of the effects really pop, and the character models/animations look downright poor at times. I am not too fond of the cartoony cutscenes between missions – seems kind of odd to go to such lengths to keep the player immersed in the game by shaking the camera and removing UI, and then destroying it with contrasting intermissions, but from what little of it is handled in first-person I am not sure the engine could’ve handled them. I had some worries about the story before and while it is very run-of-the-mill and sort of predictable it is executed well.

I have heard there are plans for a trilogy – DICE certainly sets upp the scene for sequels – and I am very anxious to see if they decide to listen to what people are saying about the game (as my complaints have been voiced before) and try to improve it. It is a good game, but with some great ideas that feel under-utilized.

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Posted on Nov 19/08 by Saint and filed under Reflections | No Comments »