DEATHLOOP Review (PS5) – CGMagazine
I have to admit that DEATH BUCKLE was a game that I mostly missed when it was screened before release. However, looking at it briefly before starting the actual game, the title immediately grabbed my intention, as it seemed to feature the same DNA found in Arkane’s previous work, the Dishonored series.
DEATH BUCKLE is Arkane Studios’ first steps into the next-gen game, bringing with it their iconic and beloved take on first-person shooter games, one that mixes fantastic elements with exaggerated shots. Despite its similarities in the gameplay department with Dishonored, DEATH BUCKLE stands out mainly for its history, presentation and level structure.
DEATH BUCKLE puts you in the shoes of a man named Colt, whose players will soon discover he is the security chief of Blackreef, a strange island shrouded in mystery. The people of Blackreef are mostly made up of scientists and mercenaries, who incidentally find themselves stuck in a time loop ala groundhog day.
Eventually, Colt discovers that in order to break the loop and leave the island, he must eliminate eight individuals known as Visionaries, or those primarily responsible for building the space-time anomaly on Blackreef. Unfortunately for Colt, in order for one of his actions to stay true he has to take down the Visionaries 8 within 24 hours or else he will have to start the day all over again.
DEATH BUCKLE co-stars Julianna, who may or may not have had sex with Colt, prior to her amnesia and betrayal. Julianna, like Colt, is really good at killing; however, Julianna’s only target is Colt himself, who in DEATH BUCKLE results in a special multiplayer mode. Players assume the role of Julianna and invade another player’s instance, in which they must hunt down Cole (think Dark souls but more integrated into the overall experience). While her abilities are ultimately more limited than Colt’s, instead Julianna has her own unique skills and perks, like alerting other NPCs / hostiles in the player, of Colt’s location, making this a very well-made game. and cat and mouse fun.
The back-and-forth between juggling for survival while trying to find clues and find ways to effectively kill the Eight Visionaries, with the added strain of Julianna entering and ruining your run, infuses DEATHLOOP with a truly unique feeling in a world. otherwise familiar game. Colt and Julianna are both strong, sarcastic characters who play each other much like a superhero and archnemesis dynamic, with the added sexual tension found in a James bond movie
“DEATHLOOP encourages exploration and takes the time to gather information and become smarter …”
Aesthetically, DEATH BUCKLE draws heavily on 1950s cinema iconography, such as the works of Saul Bass, giving the game a feel reminiscent of pulp fiction magazines of the time.
When it comes to gameplay, Colt can slowly gain strength in terms of actual powers and abilities by taking out one of the Eight Visionaries, who, while not all of them are killed, will guarantee a new slab or supernatural power. that Colt can use. As a Colt, the player can equip a limited number of slabs, which can be equipped and traded through the loadout menu before starting a day. Abilities run the gamut of a blink-like power that is no different to the likes of Dishonored, To Star wars-like psychokinesis surge abilities.
Finally, Colt and Julianna have access to a wide range of different weapons, all of which strike a balance between realism and fantasy, which can also be enhanced and augmented with mods similar to games like destiny. Different grades of weapons and augments can also be found. These are often incentives within bonus objectives that the player can commit between fights to hunt down visionaries.
If you are a fan of story-based first person shooters or games in general, DEATH BUCKLE does a great job creating a densely packed world, at least in terms of story snippets and world-building curiosities that the player can find and interact with. Coupled with the safety net to always restart the day, DEATH BUCKLE encourages exploration and takes the time to gather information and become smarter, which means the game offers plenty of opportunities to play both aggressively or more methodologically without missing out on the other.