Monday, 23 February 2015

The Order: 1886 (Video Game Review)

Welcome ladies and gentlemen, to the best movie on the PlayStation 4. With three hours of gameplay and two hours of cutscenes, The Order: 1886 proves how outstanding next-gen visuals can be while wasting every last shred of potential on offer.

Set in an alternate history universe, the game follows the steampunk nigh-immortal Knights of the Round table as they face down hordes of werewolves. Backed by a young Nikoli Tesla, the Order soon faces rebellions from the downtrodden lower class lacking their protection, forcing them to fight the very ones they swore to protect.


  1. What really worries me is whether or not this is the future for video games, very short amounts of gameplay (especially compared to cutscenes) and taking up massive amounts of space on your hard drive all because they want it looking really good, since most AAA titles only care about that now (and is the one thing everybody has been pushing about The Order ever since it was announced).

    Let's look back for a second, if this was made back on the PS2, it would have a far shorter development time, would need far less money to be made, and the gameplay/cutscenes could easily come out the exact same if only with worse graphics. If this was made on the PS2 but given the same development time it has now and the same budget the gameplay would have come out the same but the game would have at least been longer, as well as probably have a proper ending (one that isn't sequel bait anyway) and the developers would have had room to fully flesh out the characters as well as the world they've made.

    I just feel that this rush to look the best and be on the latest systems is what's crippling the industry right now, it takes forever to make anything and what is made is almost never worth the wait as people spend far too long on details that really shouldn't matter (just look at the development for The Last Guardian if you want to see egregious examples of that).

    1. The future? Probably not in my opinion. I do think there will be certain titles which will keep trying to attempt this angle of a "cinematic" vision and pushing for more cut-scenes; yet at the same time there has been a great deal of backlash against them over and over again. Even prior to The Order: 1886 delivering this short experience, we've had others both in and out of the AAA industry raked over the coals. The Chinese Room for one is a repeat offender in this regard with the backlash against Dear Esther and Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs (though personally I did enjoy that last one) being hammered home again and again. They similarly emphasised their graphical style, general beauty and look at the cost of any interactivity, and others such as Ryse: Son of Rome was the same. Despite this however there have been plenty of titles, even console exclusive ones, which have avoided this trend. Wonderful 101, Titanfall, Alien: Isolation, Super Smash Bros., Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, and that's just a few of the good ones. Even bad video games like the Evil Within do try to avoid this trend.

      There will always be games like The Order: 1886 trying to basically promote how shiny the graphical capabilities of new machines are, but personally I don't think they'll ever quite dominate the industry. There are enough exceptions to this these days to show things are changing bit by bit, and even developers are coming out now stating they are emphasising smooth gameplay and quality over graphics. Naughty Dog for one did this not too long ago. The industry is certainly in a slump, the AAA industry is stuck following certain ideas all too closely, and consoles are fighting a losing war trying to beat PCs at their own game. That said, I think there is enough here to know that The Order: 1886 will not become a dominant idea within the industry.