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Mirror's Edge (Xbox 360)

Teen
ESRB Rating
Genre
Perspective
80
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.9
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Zokolov (66)
Written on  :  Dec 19, 2012
Platform  :  Xbox 360
Rating  :  3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars

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Summary

With a little more effort, it would have been awesome, but alas...

The Good

I don't usually pay too much attention to game graphics, especially when some perfectly good games are unnecessarily ripped apart due to having even slightly inferior graphics when compared to some latest blockbuster. But I have to praise Mirror's Edge in this respect because it's simply gorgeous. Besides jaw-dropping graphics and fluid animation, the character design is also great and most importantly, the game is full of color, which is a good thing considering how brownish-gray dystopias dominate gaming today.

The color red seems to what we see the most, as it marks the direction you need to go in, but as a great design choice, this can also be turned off, making going forward a constant puzzle, which is always a good thing. The core gameplay of Mirror's Edge feels amazing at first. The fluid movement, the speed and the expertly crafted close-quarters combat are all great things, but the best thing about the game is how you can constantly stay in motion if you're good enough. The fact that you can technically advance in the game without gunning everyone down is also a plus.

I liked the main characters, the protagonist Faith, her sister Kate and of course, the resident "voice with an Internet connection" Merc, and the game has an interesting background story. The ending is also beautiful, thanks to the music. Unfortunately...

The Bad

...it is not taken advantage of, and the main plot just feels thin. Though the cartoon-style cutscenes are well-made, there just aren't enough of them (I never thought I'd say this). We should know more about the characters in order to care about them. Now, many die but nothing really made me emotional, although when Faith and her sister first hug in the game, I at least got close.

Though the main ideas behind this game sound good on paper, towards the end, the game just gets infuriatingly difficult. Faith can't take much damage while Blues keep coming in greater and greater numbers, especially when it would be nicer to have more time to stop and think Though you can steal weapons from enemies (and in my case, this became mandatory) the shooting controls are rather bad and even though the enemies seem to have bottomless magazines, Faith always runs out of ammo in an instant.

Because of these difficult, enemy-filled segments, the game gets repetitive since some scenes (especially the one with Ropeburn) have to be repeated over and over and over and over and... the point is, while death doesn't send you too far back, the repetition still gets on your nerves. Despite this, the game still falls far too short. Mine lasted around five hours, though most will probably breeze through even faster, and as great as the ending was, my primary reaction was "that was it already?!".

The Bottom Line

A first-person action-adventure for those bored of shooters and looking for something original. Though the game starts out strong and had loads of potential, it stills doesn't quite follow through and its main weaknesses are repetitiveness and short length. Still worth a try.