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Deathloop


Mr Do 71
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Been playing this loads since it's hit Gamepass. For me this is Arkane's best game to date!

 

Loved Dishonored series, hated Prey. But Arkane have really nailed it with Deathloop.

 

Like the direction they went with the 4 areas, getting to know them and become very memorable as the loops go on.

 

Love the banter between Cole and Julianna as the game progresses. The visionaries are ace in this, especially the messaging that goes of between them as the game progresses. Aleksis has to be my fav yet.

 

 

Don't get me wrong, there is alot of trial and error in this game, but you end up learning by your mistakes getting to know the game abit better each time round. 

 

Been playing on PC with PS5 pad as it supports haptics natively, along with Series S in another room. Quite surprised how well the Series S port holds up, as I don't really feel like I'm loosing anything switching between the 2. Have to say I love the haptics with the PS5 pad though, with the resistant in the triggers. 

 

 

 

 

 

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After giving it a few more hours I've decided to bail unfortunately. I've stuck with it a LOT longer than I would most Gamepass games I wasn't quickly enjoying, mainly because of Arkane's pedigree and the idea that, on paper, this is something I should love.

 

But I don't. Really like the theory but strongly dislike the execution. I don't feel like I'm really figuring anything out for myself, everything is just being handed to me. And honestly, that would be fine if I liked the core aspect of getting from A to B but I don't. I don't find either the stealth or the combat enjoyable. The stealth is unpredictable due to the flaky AI while the combat is floaty, weightless and incredibly chaotic. When each combat encounter has finished I just feel relief that the mayhem is over but little sense of accomplishment.

 

The art direction is very good but even then, I find 2 of the 4 locations quite boring. The only one I really like is Updaam. I appreciate the effort going into making 4 different versions of each location but I don't find most of them interesting.

 

The tipping point for me has been taking out several visionaries and feeling nothing. No sense that I really instigated anything myself or achieved much personally.

 

I'm glad Arkane are around, that they're still taking risks and that other people are enjoying it but for me it's a significant step down from Prey and Dishonored.

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When you first start playing this is seems immensively complex and free form, but after a few hours you release that every step you need to take to progress is a just case of checking a menu and following the checkboxes and matching to the time of day all the way to the finale.
I’d agree that the visionaries are pretty lacklustre and offer less challenge that the dumb Ai goons, which are only a problem by sheer weight of numbers. The

Spoiler

party

level is pretty egregious for this.

 

By the end it just felt a by the numbers chore rather than a huge unravelling a wool ball of a time loop mystery. Agreed not up there with Prey and Dishonoured the art direction carried a lot of this game.

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I'm enjoying this a lot, but the stupid AI is spoiling it a bit. It has that Dishonored quality, where you sometimes complete an objective by accident, without realising what you were supposed to do. Like, last night I killed Aleksis for the first time without really understanding what was supposed to happen. I assumed taking him on would be a kind of sniper battle, but he never seemed to fire a shot. I used the shift power to close the distance, ran round the back of his bunker, and found him crouched facing the wall with his back to me. So I just killed him with my machete.

 

I'm sure it'll be more interesting if I do it again, but it was pretty anticlimactic. The other visionary fights have been a bit underwhelming too, given that they just mill around like bots in a multiplayer game. They aren't terribly interesting to fight, as their behaviour is pretty random. If ever there was a game that needed enemies to react to you in the same way they did in Goldeneye, it's this.

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I couldn’t even tell you what most of the Visionaries even looked like until I watched the new ending they added in a recent patch on YouTube (I got one of the other endings in my game rather than what is obviously meant to be the ‘proper' one).

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Yeah, that's another thing. The character design is really imaginative, but you never really see it because the other characters skitter about unpredictably and disappear when they die.

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2 hours ago, K said:

I'm enjoying this a lot, but the stupid AI is spoiling it a bit. It has that Dishonored quality, where you sometimes complete an objective by accident, without realising what you were supposed to do. Like, last night I killed Aleksis for the first time without really understanding what was supposed to happen. I assumed taking him on would be a kind of sniper battle, but he never seemed to fire a shot. I used the shift power to close the distance, ran round the back of his bunker, and found him crouched facing the wall with his back to me. So I just killed him with my machete.

 

I'm sure it'll be more interesting if I do it again, but it was pretty anticlimactic. The other visionary fights have been a bit underwhelming too, given that they just mill around like bots in a multiplayer game. They aren't terribly interesting to fight, as their behaviour is pretty random. If ever there was a game that needed enemies to react to you in the same way they did in Goldeneye, it's this.

I've finished the game and still do not know what you are referring to here.

 

Spoiler for my Aleksis fight.

Spoiler

I turned off the valve to his favourite chocolate beer and then shot him in the back of the head when he came to the cellar to investigate.

 

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I just started trying to play this on PC, but it's an unstable mess apparently, hard crashing to desktop just when changing some video options. The spoonfeeding intro section with constant pop-ups is extremely boring as well so I'm not really feeling it having to repeat it with this constant crashing.

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It's stuttering randomly when loading new areas. Might need a driver update. This is on a 3060ti and SSD so it's not a hardware issue. Seems to be something to do with v-sync 

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Played about 10 hours of this on gamepass now and I'm enjoying it, but to echo most people's comments above, the AI really is an issue. I know the game tries to explain it away within the story but it does detract from the experience. 

 

That said I am enjoying the 'puzzle FPS' elements of detective work, where you can investigate best tactics and opportunities on one cycle and then act upon on the next. It reminds me a bit of Hitman in this respect, but I think this is better implemented (or maybe I don't have the patience with Hitman). I do think this Groundhog Day idea is a fantastic basis and idea for a game, I just sort of feel like the execution might be slightly off. Hard to pinpoint how or where - the floaty guns & ropey AI are certainly a big factor though. The combat reminds me a lot of Bioshock (I replayed the trilogy recently), where if things go to shit then it's not only bad news damage wise but also as the combat isn't robust enough to be wholly enjoyable. 

 

It's still good mind, but not quite near the heights of Prey (which I adored) and Dishonoured. 

 

That said I'll still finish it I think. Only done 3 of the targets, 1 diabolically amateurly (where I immediately killed myself with noxious gas seconds later) and the hook of the gameplay as per above - detectiveyness with satisfying stealth ideals, will keep me on the hook for a while longer yet.

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On 27/09/2022 at 13:06, Harsin said:

I am growing to detest the invasion mechanic in this. Before anyone says it, I've already set the game to single player mode which at least stops you having to go up against 12 year olds carrying the best kit in the game with the reflexes of a mongoose. But the main problem isn’t that they're difficult, she's fairly easy to get rid of, it’s that it’s repetitive (especially then having to hack the antenna each sodding time) and crucially stops you playing the game the way you want and blows your sense of immersion. There have been occasions where I've spent time milling around the level just so I can get rid of her before doing what I want. What’s the point in spending ages taking a sneaky approach if chances are it'll turn into a firefight anyway when she blunders in at a crucial point. I get the impression they want you to mix things up, but frankly I think the shooting is bad with floaty loosey goosey controls (on Xbox) and guns that feel like water pistols. While I am enjoying it, having recently replayed Dishonered 1 and 2 and all DLCs and Prey, this is probably my least favourite of their games. Their next project being a straight up shooter doesn’t fill me with confidence.

 

Your thoughts echo mine from a year ago. Judging by how quickly this disappeared from radar despite all the breathless perfect scores I can't see it troubling many GOTY lists. I really want to hear someone who genuinely thinks this is a ten explain why under pressure. Especially if they think this is a better game that any previous Arkane game from either studio. The only agreeable review I could find of it was Skillups review which is well worth a watch.

 

 

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I've played for a few hours now but I think I'm done with it already to be honest. The combat, which it seems to want to encourage you to start often, just isn't very good. The weapons feel weak, the enemies are stupid, the feedback for actually shooting at them is poor...

 

It's a shame, because I like the concept and the ideas, but it's just not that much fun mechanically for what it's trying to do.

 

I'm not really all that sold on the writing or visuals either. And when the epic music starts playing in combat it just comes across weird when it's playing over a train of enemies coming round a corner for you to mow down.

 

Add to that other frustrations: I just had a long battle of trying to mop up all the

 

Spoiler

Wenjie clones, and I was on my last life after a long several hours before this, collecting gear and being careful, and was looking forward to being able to keep it all as the game made it clear that would be possible and I could keep my weapons after finishing the Wenjie's off. Only just as I was dropping down and jumping across a railing to get to the lab I didn't see there was water there and fell in and died. No guns for me, and all that progress lost for no reason.

 

It's not like a rogue like yet (which I'm assuming it will be eventually), as I literally kept nothing. At least in Hades or whatever there would still have been some loot or something to show for it, but as it is it just feels really deflating.

 

I cannot understand the high scores for this everywhere, it's just nowhere near as good as Prey for example, a game which many reviewers slept on and it didn't get the recognition it deserved at the time I think.

 

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I was also surprised that with the time loop concept

 

Spoiler

That it essentially amounts to window dressing, and is just a way to make four levels feel like a pseudo sixteen.

 

But unfortunately it doesn't seem to add any depth with that, you are basically driving your experience through the menus rather than within the world. And those menus are more convoluted than they need to be. It keeps trying to rip your immersion away to direct you towards something, or to tell you a thing to do, at least in the first few hours. But then even when it stops holding your hand as much it's like a series of selectable objectives where you just have to go there and kill whatever or flip a switch etc.

 

It's really pared back from anything else in the genre. And that's no good when combat is this dull.

 

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6 hours ago, Benny said:

after a long several hours


its best to play this as a bite sized chunks…get into a level, complete the assigned tasks and out. There’s plenty of opportunity to collect stuff.  I can’t imagine spending hours in a single level, you’ll be revisiting over and over anyway. Though I hardly think the games at fault for you jumping of a balcony without looking….

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1 hour ago, DualSense said:


its best to play this as a bite sized chunks…get into a level, complete the assigned tasks and out. There’s plenty of opportunity to collect stuff.  I can’t imagine spending hours in a single level, you’ll be revisiting over and over anyway. Though I hardly think the games at fault for you jumping of a balcony without looking….

 

That's the thing though - either way it adds up to several hours of "progression" on that run with nothing to show for it. You don't even get the chance to claw something back a la Dark Souls.

 

Yeah I mean the jumping over the railing was obviously a bit of player error there, but honestly I found it hard to tell which bits were above water in that level at times. And my only deaths in the game were mostly from that kind of stuff rather than from enemies, which never presented any challenge at all.

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One thing that really helped me is realising there's basically no penalty for leaving a level and coming back. You can just loop and wait until that time of day, and start again. Once you know what to do, you can whizz through a level pretty quickly.

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22 minutes ago, K said:

One thing that really helped me is realising there's basically no penalty for leaving a level and coming back. You can just loop and wait until that time of day, and start again. Once you know what to do, you can whizz through a level pretty quickly.


Yeah I’m pretty much just blasting through levels getting better weapons, slabs, etc and infusing things I like at the moment. I’m a latecomer to mouse/keyboard on PC so it’s also becoming a bit of a training ground for playing with those. Makes those headshots really easy, but I’m still fucking useless at actually moving around a level gracefully. 

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2 hours ago, Benny said:

That's the thing though - either way it adds up to several hours of "progression" on that run with nothing to show for it. You don't even get the chance to claw something back a la Dark Souls.


That’s your choice though, you have three lives, when you are down to one, call it a day, retreat and move on to the next part of the day and the three lives are refreshed for the next district. If you are picking up info etc then you are progressing the game and increasing your knowledge if not your abilities. 

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39 minutes ago, spanx said:

I’m still fucking useless at actually moving around a level gracefully. 


once you unlock some of the better upgrades you’ll be moving through the levels like a ninja.  
 

You can go from the start of a level to a visionary kill,set up another, and out in less than a minute should you want to.

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Yeah I mean, in this instance I didn't really have to retreat as I'd "won". It was the pratfall that sealed me giving up and turning it off for the evening once I lost everything.

 

I think it's just not for me. It doesn't do the immersive sim stuff very well at all compared to Arkane's previous work, and coming off games like Ultrakill and Prodeus the combat is genuinely soporific which doesn't help maintain my interest.

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Also: gun jamming. Fine maybe in an immersive sim game like Prey or System Shock 2 where you have limited resources and where you might not actually be firing weapons very often, and where combat is more of a difficult choice whether to engage in. But in Deathloop, where combat is more readily encouraged, and guns and ammo are plentiful from the off: it's just extremely annoying. And all it does is break up the flow of that combat and makes the initial enjoyment of actually using those guns soured for me. Of course you can get better guns, but you have to get used to a lot of random jams until then. It just seemed more annoying than necessary in the kind of game they've made.

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15 minutes ago, DualSense said:


once you unlock some of the better upgrades you’ll be moving through the levels like a ninja.  
 

You can go from the start of a level to a visionary kill,set up another, and out in less than a minute should you want to.


It’s more my ineptitude with mouse and keyboard. I do much prefer the accuracy though, so it’s a matter of getting comfortable with movement 

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AI aside, I am having a tremendous time with this. At lunch today, I had an incredibly tense stealth run where I stalked Fia and her goons round the reactor. When you use Shift and Aether, it's like you're the Predator - slipping in and out of your camouflage and nailgunning your way through a whole army of henchmen. And last night I re-did Egor, and had a pretty cool sniper battle using the ability suppressor things.

 

Some of the visionaries seem a bit boring. I don't quite get what's supposed to be interesting about Harriet's boss fight. And it needs more enemy variety - Dishonored 2 had the clockwork soldiers, the envisioned, the dogs, the witches, etc to mix things up, whereas the Eternalists in this are mostly drunk people with shotguns. I sort of feel like two slabs isn't enough to carry at any time, as I always seem to choose something that isn't especially useful for the current level. But the process of mapping the levels out in your mind, both physically and temporally, is fascinating.

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I'm going to give it another go tonight. It does sound like the game improves and you get the good stuff after the dodgy "onboarding" stage, which seeing as I'm past that I'd like to see what else there is.

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