March 3, 2019 at 1:01 AM #582
Detroit: Become Human
Rating: 5.0 – Flawless
Easily one of Quantic’s best games yet!
I have been a huge fan of Quantic Dreams going back to Indigo Prophecy and Heavy Rain. I even dug Beyond: Two Souls regardless of that title getting messy at a few points. I know each game has their fair share of nitpicks, but the thing Quantic Dreams nails is how they branch out their stories with its multitude of choice-based gameplay having actual impactful results in the narrative. This is not like most Telltale games where the greater arc stays the same, but the journey is slightly altered. No, characters can abruptly die when presented with a sudden major decision or major paths can be altered to skip entire levels. That is what I loved about Quantic Dreams’ games is these major chances they take on their games and Detroit absolutely kills it in these departments. Quantic also lives up to their past precedents set by moving the bar for Detroit being a true technical marvel and one of the best looking games this generation of consoles. This is coming from a person playing on a slim PS4 and not a 4K Pro system so I can only imagine the improvements if I were to play on a 4K setup.
Like Heavy Rain and Indigo Prophecy, Detroit follows the story arcs of several characters. All four are androids at different states of becoming Â¡Â®deviant’ and thinking for themselves. Each character path has major moments where I had to pause the game and think over the imperative decision I was presented with. Quantic Dreams is clever at masking some choices as right or wrong that created some moments that I will never forget. Android Detective Connor and his human partner Detective Anderson were my favorite characters to follow throughout the game. Connor can get killed off like other characters in the game, but unlike other characters he is always instantly replaceable from the agency. I did not know that when my Connor perished in a jaw-dropping way I did not see coming. I instantly debated on rewinding my last save to play it differently, but I sternly stuck to my decisions the whole game no matter how they played out. I was relieved to see Connor come back and continue his love/hate relationship with Anderson, and eventually became amused by the inadvertent ways my decision making kept getting my Connor killed.
The other characters all had nearly equal major moments to get behind with a few examples such as saving a daughter from her abusive father in one of the most intense escape sequences in Detroit, rescuing a bunch of experimented androids from a psychopath, leading a android-rights revolution to trying to stealthily escape from the madness to the Canadian border. Quantic Dreams always has had Quick Time Events (QTE) button prompts handle the majority of their gameplay, and they have evolved it with each of their games to have the best implementation of QTE in gaming. Minus a few key moments they almost never result in a instant game over if one QTE prompt is missed and there usually is a few chances to correct a mistake in order to recover and win the sceneÂ¡Âor you can intentionally fail and flub through a fight or chase scene like a dummy to hilariously disastrous results.
Depending on how you succeed through the prompts and the narrative based decisions made results in an ostensibly infinite amount of endings for each character. Quantic Dreams introduced a remarkable new feature at the end of each scene where a branching tree of decision options is displayed showing the choices made and blank boxes representing other options available and the percentage of the connected PS4 users that picked each option. From this same dialogue tree box checkpoints can be selected to pick up right from there in the gameplay scene to change a decision you were unsatisfied with. After finishing Detroit within two days I took advantage of this and hopped into one key part of the plot where Connor is presented with a choice that essentially gets the ball rolling for the final two-to-three hours of gameplay. I replayed that final chunk of scenes three more times within a week to see big differences in the endings for each character. Some did not survive, others endings all my characters made it to the end while others wound up skipping out on some of the most pivotal scenes in the entire game based on earlier decisions. It is insanely rare for a game to cause me to replay it multiple times that soon and that is saying something special about Detroit: Become Human.
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