Parkour doesn’t look that hard. You just gotta do perilous jumps across rooftops above thirty story drops down to a street where some old lady is walking and if you fall, you’re probably going to splatter yourself across the pavement in front of her, scarring her for the rest of her life. Albeit a very short one, she is an old lady after all.
Mirrors edge is a game where you do such acts. Except instead of old ladies you’ll just fall to your death. Your extremely cringe-causing death. Mirrors Edge was developed by Dice, you know, the guys that make Battlefield. Unfortunately, they’re the guys that make Battlefield and don’t make Mirrors Edge.
Here’s the story behind Mirrors Edge, it was hyped up to be dis awesome game with first person free running elements in a beautiful city where you take down The Man. It was also hyped up to be free roam and have like this multiplayer aspect. Fortunately only the last two promises didn’t pan out. But we did get a beautiful city and awesome free running elements. And some lack-luster combat… But hey, it’s still a super good game.
So here’s the story. In the future, the government is super oppressive and cracks down on everything from drugs to letters…? Apparently, communication is severely regulated by The Man and there’s this group of freedom fighters called “Runners” that run all over the city to deliver messages from one paying customer to the other. To deliver their letters they tend to use roof tops and to do so they require skills, like being able to swallow entire hot dogs.
You play as a runner named “Faith” (Get it? Like, “Leap of Faith”?) Faith is really bad at her job because before the game even starts she’s incapacitated from a fall and requires a convenient tutorial to regain all her skills. Luckily, she can skip the tutorial because she never really needed to remember how to grab onto the ledge of a skyscraper. We begin our journey in Faith’s weird looking shoes (Seriously, they’re weird) by delivering a parcel across a city block, simple enough. Oh noooooo… Some bad guys are here. What ever are we going to do? Faith runs past them, or shoots them, or falls off the nearest ledge. Whichever play style you prefer. Once she escapes from the bad guys or “Blues” as they’re creatively called, you know, cause they wear blue. She figures out this whole crazy conspiracy that involves her sister and this whole inner circle of the government and some guy with really yellow teeth and this douchebag that wears a really cool jacket that’s coincidentally blue. But he won’t betray you in the end… Right? Right, he was never on your side.
Here’s the biggest draw of the game. The appearance. (Well, maybe actually the gameplay maybe actually. But I’m talking about the way the game looks right now, okay? This is my review and I’ll do what I want. Get off my back.) The game is all about the lack of colour. There’s plenty of colour but the majority of the buildings are white with bright coloured details. Like green and red and a couple other colours. Like blue and yellow. But that’s it. No more, no less. Something about the way the colours are set up just works, and it makes the game look beautiful. I remember I had turned my Xbox on and was preparing to play Mirrors Edge and then just kind of left it at the main menu, not like I was putting it off, I just kind of got stuck there in some kind of trance. I’ve never taken any recreational drugs (not because I’m a square or narc but because I’m a real cool dude who read Archie comics and Archie tells me I don’t need to take drugs to have a good time) but I assume that my experience with the main menu was akin to taking a lot of drugs that make you feel really peaceful, like the meth crack cocaine marijuana. (My moms makes that) Basically I pressed start and kind of sat there for at least ten minutes staring at the screen in a total trance, then my Xbox got the Red Ring of Death.
The gameplay is pretty solid. I can’t really compare the controls to any other game because if anyone has played a first person parkour game then they’ve probably played Mirrors Edge, because to my knowledge it’s the only one of its kind. So, you know, it’s pretty good.
Are there negatives? Well, every game has its drawbacks. I got stuck on this one part… that kind of sucked… But, there’s a big problem. The game is at its best on the rooftops where you can see the sky and it’s all open, which is awesome by the way. The problem is that the game forces you into buildings and underground and something which just doesn’t work as well. It feels cramped and linear, unlike on the rooftops where you feel free, which is the whole point of the game. So, it kind of derives from the experience after the fifth time you’re shoved in some kind of sewer or something. Also, the game isn’t free-roam, and the city looks so awesome, I see some building off in the distance that I really want to climb, oh wait. I can’t!
… Gets a rating on a rating scale. There, that’s what you get, you ingrates.