Detroit Become Human Review
Detroit Become Human Review: 10/10 Legendary Imagine a story that feels as open ended and variable as real life. Do you go right or do you go left? If you go left you die and the story still continues without you. If you go right you meet a new character. Image where the choices of one character effects the circumstances of another. Imagine where even small choices come back to matter later in a story. Now imagine all of this non linear story in a video game. Detroit Become Human achieves the type of realism of choice that I have never seen to this extent in a video game before. It was my most anticipated game of 2018, and I was not disappointed. For fans of Game Infinite you may know that I am a huge fan of the Mass Effect series. One of the greatest things about those games is the player choice, but even there is a feeling of being directed forward towards something. Some choices or dialogue feel similar. Detroit Become Human takes this concept and dials it up to 11. Any illusion of choice is cleverly hidden. Through my first play through at no point did I feel like I was being forced in a particular story or dialogue direction, while at the same time still telling a story without the feeling of dread that can come from a directionless open world. Now, if Detroit Become Human was simply an exercise in variables and how long of a script the dev’s could write it might fall flat. However, there is so much more to this game. It isn’t enough to have choice, but the choices need to feel weighted and matter. There needs to be real emotion.
Detroit Become Human has three main characters and their pacing and individual arcs each get proper attention. At no point does any character feel over shadowed or under developed. Not only do we get to see their character growth and motivations, we get to help craft them. Marcus can be a borderline evil murderer or a peaceful idealist with a down right Gandhi attitude towards violence. Often times choice in games feel like you make decisions on what you do or where you go first, but this really makes you feel like you are crafting their personality as well. Connor can choose to be a stoic machine or learn to feel emotions. All of these choices don’t just impact dialogue but impact the story in unexpected ways. The story is real, believable, and makes you feel the emotions. In my play-through, I was lucky that none of my main characters died; but I know if they had I would have felt it. I actually stressed over major decisions because I wanted to survive. I was playing as a pacifist Marcus, and the game really makes you question if you should fight back.
It was hard to take the high road in this game and still try to save everyone. There are many times where the game pushes you to react rashly and tempt a knee jerk reaction out of you when sometimes the correct action is to wait. Other times, if you do nothing, something bad happens because of your inaction. This level of choice adds such a layer of fun and stress to the game. The sheer amount of choices adds a layer of replay-ability. I haven’t felt a desire to instantly start over and keep playing like this in a long time. The quality of the story and the level of choice adds to make a very realistic game. All that choice and story would alone be a very entertaining game, but the developers went full throttle. You would expect that a game with so much choice and branching paths, while keeping a good emotional story, would have to be some 8-bit RPG or some OG Xbox looking game. After all, it can’t look THAT good, right? How can the developers build a game that has entire LEVELS missing based on choices? Depending on your choices side characters, main characters, or even entire missions, may be different. The game has to be a negative on looks right?
Wrong. Detroit Become Human is one of the best looking games you have ever seen. The faces are so detailed it blurs the lines between reality and fiction. The detail of rain dropping on the faces of a character in the dark, the detail of the most minute details in the environment. Imagine a game so real that a photorealistic character can walk into a room and pick up a magazine and seamlessly read the details on it. The environments are littered with small detailed pieces that you can look at closer.
I only have two negatives, and they are small. There is a story twist in Kara’s character arc, that thanks to clues I figured out before hand it ruined the twist. I saw it coming so therefore it had less shock value. Either they did too much foreshadowing or I just happened to figure it out; I’m not sure. Perhaps if I hadn’t seen it coming I would hav enjoyed it more. But because I didn’t enjoy it I started to question it. It really becomes little bit of a can of worms when it comes to her story. It doesn’t really make much sense. Even though her twist is kinda illogical, it doesn’t do enough to detract from the emotional bond in her story. The other negative is kind of a continuation of one of the best parts of this game. The game looks so damn beautiful that to leave out a photo mode is down right criminal. There were so many times I tried to get a cool shot but the moment went to fast or I couldn’t get the right angle. If they add a photo mode in an update, my next play through will probably take twice as long. While I enjoy narrative driven games, if you are expecting endless shooter gauntlets or hate dialogue/quick time events, this masterpiece may not be for you. But if you want an amazing experience, check it out. In the end, this is one of the games you buy a PS4 Pro for its 4K visuals. It is one of the best crafted and most heart felt stories. The technical aspects, and the story alone deserve a high rating, but the visuals push it over the top. I tried to find anything to really lower the score, and I struggled to find major complaints. We have to give it our coveted 10/10 LEGENDARY rating. Every now and then a game comes out that is so good It ruins the games around it. How can I play State of Decay 2 or Agony (which I'm also reviewing) after this masterpiece? Either way, that is my problem to solve. Go buy a PS4 and play this game.