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62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
on October 9, 2012
This game from the beginning has a very unique style to it, it blends stealth; fast paced combat and exploration (although not open world, more like open zone). After 6+ hours so far, I'm guessing it's about 12-15 at my pace but could be shorter or longer depending on how much you explore and do side quests.

Update-I have now put in 37 hours in 2 play-throughs, and all of the above stand. took me about 25 hours the first time doing complete Ghost achievements, 2nd time was just the opposite, and were both satisfying. The game's ending and level design changes due to how you play through a "chaos" hidden ranking, which I thought was a nice touch as my 2 completions had different outcomes and aesthetics in some levels and dialogue.


Each of these are done very well, I have chosen to attempt stealth and I am having a great time with the controls and abilities given to play that way. I have also tried full in your face combat and it is very hectic but in a good way! There are a lot of gear upgrades to spend cash on and abilities to improve as well allowing customization.

There are multiple methods of doing the missions and side missions so far, depending on your abilities and play styles; I can see myself already replaying this with a different style and not getting bored.

The storytelling is well done, I want to find out what happens and it's great to listen in on people (and how/what they think with your abilities).


The graphics aren't the greatest but fit the art style and demeanor of the game, but could be better textures I think. Gives decent enough options to allow a range of computers to run it but mine is pretty up to date so I can't say how low it can run on.

Overall I think this is worth my time x2 play throughs at least, if you enjoy this blend/style of game then it's probably worth the ~60, otherwise I'm sure a sale will show up.
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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on October 30, 2012
Dishonored is a game that should run about 20 hours if you do side missions and take a stealthy route. If you run-and-gun, killing everything in your path, it should take significantly less time to complete. I believe that this game merits a few play-throughs in order to experience the different ways to go about completing missions. If you like Assassin's Creed and Deus Ex, consider this a hybrid of the two - a stealthy first-person shooter.

What I like about the game:
+You can have a completely kill-free game - in fact there's an achievement for this.
+Optional missions serve a purpose to the main mission rather than being tacked on as time fillers.
+Stealth, as well as non-lethal means of taking out enemies, is well implemented.
+Combat controls are responsive and easy to master - riposte/counter-attacks work seemlessly.
+Learned abilities are freakin' cool - controlling plague rats to take down foes? Check!
+Game looks great on the PC (haven't tried it on PS3 or Xbox)
+Voice acting is exceptional.
+Story is captivating, despite some obvious twists and turns along the way.

What I didn't care for:
-The brevity of the game, but this is not a big deal. The gameplay makes up for it.
-Variety of weapons could be better.

I can't really think of anything else. This is a must-buy game in my opinion - one of the best of 2012, that's for sure.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on October 11, 2012
If you have ever played Thief 1 and 2 (or even System Shock 2) by the now dissolved Looking Glass Studios, you owe it to yourself to give this game a try. The stealth isn't as well done, as the AI seem to converge on your position from all over, even if only one guard is alerted to your presence, plus there is no HUD indicator of how well you're hidden, so sometimes it's a crapshoot. But the first time I realized I could climb up pipes and walls and tiptoe over the guards' heads, I knew this would be a fun game. Then there's using Blink, good fun. There are always alternate routes, and no kill playthroughs of missions are possible, but are a bit harder, require more planning, and more creeping around in the shadows, and that's a good thing. The game is beautiful in my eyes. No hyper-realistic textures and models here, but the watercolor-styled textures and wonderfully realized cityscapes, and especially the well done water, shadow, and lighting effects make for a immersive gaming experience, who cares if it's a little bit cartoony. The gameworld really asks to be explored, and rewards you with secrets if you do. The powers are a blast, and there are many ways to use them to either avoid or dispatch enemies, and they kind of have a Bioshock style to them. It's hard to write about many things without giving away spoilers. Voice acting is well done, and the background stories found among audio files and notes littering the gameworld are sometimes better than the main plot. Overall a fun, immersive game, but I'll dock a star for the inconsistent (and sometimes annoying) AI reponse to the stealth aspects of play.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on December 6, 2012
If you are looking for a game with a lot of destructive cool modern type weapons then this is not the game for you. The ending of the game as well as the game play is determined by how you play the game. The first time through I used every weapon at my disposal and killed a lot of mostly evil characters. This resulted in parts of the game becoming more violent with more of the characters trying to kill me and the ending was very black. When I played it the second time I always used stealth and not my weapons. I played the whole game without killing anyone. This resulted in many of the characters being more friendly and a happy bright ending. The graphics were excellent, the story line was believable and fortunately the single player mode was much longer than most of today's FPS games.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on October 28, 2012
The city of Dunwall and its surrounding territories are ruled by the Empress Kaldwin, a fair and strong ruler. When she is assassinated and her daughter Emily kidnapped, her bodyguard Corvo Attano is held responsible and imprisoned. After six months, a brutal new regime under the Lord Regent has been established and the city placed in a state of fear. When Corvo is rescued by loyalists to the old regime, he is given the tools to carry out a series of missions aimed at removing the Lord Regent, rescuing Princess Emily and restoring justice to Dunwall. But a virulent plague and uncertain loyalties amongst the various factions make Corvo's job a lot harder as he must decide to take the path of blood-soaked vengeance or striking surgically from the shadows.

Dishonored is a first-person action game developed by Arkane Studios, with several of the developers of the Thief, Deus Ex and Half-Life franchises working on it. It is a richly atmospheric game which, refreshingly, rewards you for avoiding violence, chaos and killing (though still allowing you to pursue that course if you really want to).

The game places you in the role of Corvo, a bodyguard-turned-secret agent. You have a variety of tools at your disposal to carry out missions, including magical powers (the ability to blink - teleport short distances - is essential) and equipment including crossbows with sleep darts to knock out foes. You can also knock out unsuspecting enemies with sneak attacks and, if really necessary, use firearms and swords for direct combat. You can also use your magical powers to possess other creatures (including human characters) for brief periods. Each mission is set in a substantial area of the city of Dunwall, with you able to scale buildings using your powers and hide in the shadows from unsuspecting guards, or try a frontal assault option and wade through rivers of blood on your way to your objective. However, using violence and killing people increases the amount of chaos present in the city, which affects the number of guards (and rats) on later levels, and their alertness.

Dishonored's biggest success is its setting, with Dunwall being a grimy industrial city with a tech level more like Victorian England than a traditional high fantasy location. There are echoes of steampunk and China Mieville's world of Bas-Lag in the setting, which is a fascinating place to explore. There are also numerous books, posters, notes and audio logs dotted around the city which unveil its history in some depth and add to a feeling of immersion in the game. The depiction of grimy tenement blocks, rich manor houses and immense official structures (such as prisons, fortresses and fortified lighthouses) is remarkable, giving the game a tremendous sense of place. These settings also reward exploration, with Corvo often able to find bonus items and cash by thoroughly exploring every area rather than blitzing straight through.

The game's freedom has been its main talking point, with players having multiple paths to victory. This is true to a large degree, although there are still only a finite number of ways to proceed. The game is open enough to allow for two or three playthroughs using different styles (to unlock the several different endings), although arguably the game's freedom is not sufficient to justify more than that. With no multiplayer, the game's long-term replayability may be in doubt, though the (often difficult-to-achieve) achievements do help with that issue.

The writing and the characterisation in the game is fairly solid, and there's much amusement to be gained by eavesdropping on conversations from the shadows or spying through keyholes (sometimes learning something valuable that opens up new ideas and objectives). The game gives out an achievement for 'ghosting', which is not only getting through the game without killing anyone but getting through the game without anyone being aware you were even present. Achieving this is highly satisfying. The game also allows you to complete it without ever having to kill anyone, even assassination targets, which is an improvement over the recent Deus Ex: Human Revolution, which was impossible to complete without killing at least three mid-game bosses.

The game is well-paced, with missions taking anything up to three hours apiece to carry out if you are thoughtful and methodical. There have been complaints by some players about the game being too short, although to complete the game in much less than eight hours or so is only possible if you take the frontal assault option, which seems to be missing some of the point of the game. For my first playthrough I took a non-lethal course, methodically exploring each mission to start with and then picking up the pace in the later missions (where there is a much greater sense of urgency to events). This led me to completing the game in just under twelve hours, a very satisfactory amount of game for my money (and also leaving several other endings and playstyles available to be explored).

Dishonored (****½) is an intelligent and atmospheric game which gives the player a lot of freedom in how they choose to approach it and what they want to get out of the game. Surveying a target from a rooftop, coming up with a plan to get in without being seen and executing that plan successfully is great fun; when the plan goes awry and having to come up with a new idea on the fly even moreso. The game does falter a little towards the end, with a sequence set in a flooded part of the city going on a bit too long and the player being railroaded into the nearest thing the game has to a boss fight, but overall this is a rich and compelling game experience.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on December 3, 2012
I had read some reviews saying you will finish this in anywhere from 8-12 hours. That is totally false. Maybe if you have played it multiple times and know where evey single thing is, you head straight through the main quest and talk to absolutely no one other than the primary task givers...then yes, you might. I am on playthrough #1 and have played it most of the day Sat and Sunday, Wed-Friday a few hours a night and am almost done. It's over 24 hours already.
- Graphics - I read that the graphics were poor. Mine are excellent. No jaggies, everything is clear and well rendered on high settings.
- Gameplay - Do all there is to do in one map before leaving. Collect all the trinkets and baubles, ammo and supplies. It will be reset to different stuff if you ever come back.
- Books contain back story and clues to safe combinations. Not like Skyrim or Oblivion where you have to read the same books a million times in different locations. The books on one map will NOT be the same as other locations.
- Trust your instincts in the game storyline. That's all I'm saying about that. Do what you think is right or wrong. You can be a cold killer or a life saver throughout the city.
- Save options. It saves before difficult areas and you can set save points. Excellent!
The only real Con for me was no Dev Console in a Bethesda game? Would have been nice to play around on the map and experiment with clipping effects. That's it.
Hope you like it. I did.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 2012
I've really enjoyed this game so far. It's got a great storyline, perhaps a bit cliche, but enjoyable none the less. Original characters. The graphics are good(they fit the style of the game), and the lighting is great.

The ability to choose different ways to accomplish tasks makes it replayable to me, and they aren't just the "choose this option to proceed" options either. I've found several parts in the game so far where I've had trouble deciding how I want to proceed. The option to brute-force your way through is always there, but there's also climbing over roofs, finding ways into sewers, climbing over walls to back alleys. I haven't messed with powers aside from the teleport(blink), and it adds even more ways to get around.

Yes, the game can be activated on Steam.

There was some issues with ATI's drivers. The game would crash as soon as i tried to start the game. After updating to the 12.11 version (currently beta), it seems to be working without any problems. They can be found here: [...]
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on October 16, 2012
I'm a fan of the games this pays homage to (especially Thief, I still have the giant triangular box sitting in my attic) and my complaints really boil down to the value of the experience.

Pros- Sort of interesting world
good dialogue
controls work for the most part and you're frequently doing somewhat complicated stuff that look like they'd be harder to do than they are.
Really awesome loading times - half the time I don't realize it's done loading, it's like 3-5 seconds and my PC isn't even that powerful.
Nice graphics, very similar art direction to Half-Life 2 but a lot of the textures and the face models remind me of BioShock.

Cons - The game discourages killing by basically increasing the difficulty (chaos) yet your knife/sword are equipped to your left click the entire game. I really really wish it was more like Bioshock where you have a weapon in one hand and a power in another, or just let me pick what goes into each hand... not my left click is my instant kill button and my right click is everything else and I'm literally rebinding it constantly (for example sometimes you want to stop time, blink (teleport) and then lets say... possess an animal? Yeah that's opening up the radial menu 3 times).

The story didn't stick with me. I beat the game today and when it ended I didn't... care. And that's a pity because it could have been a beautiful experience but instead it's a lot like the Penny-Arcade comic about the game... a whole lot of stuff, people like all the stuff, but none of it is very well developed or interesting. The only characters I cared about was the boat man, Emily and the one in your inventory (Trying not to spoil things). Even the Outsider stuff came off as silly to me and I usually like that stuff.

And finally the content. I would say the game's length but that isn't fair. When Bioshock came out it was heavily criticized for being shorter than some shooters and I still loved it and consider it a 5/5, but this game... Is probably the same length as Bioshock but just felt more empty. Every area has 3-4 runes and 3-4 shards. 1-2 optional things you can do (usually the things you do to beat the mission without killing the enemy)... and that's it. No real reason for extra exploration. As long as you get all the runes you witness all the extra scenes with a certain character so there is no extra reason to veer off and look for stuff. Even Money doesn't matter much, I wasn't even trying but I bought every upgrade for everything well before the games end.

The game might be worth a second playthrough for some people, ya know one where you kill everyone, but I imagine 1. that playthrough would be shorter since you'd be avoiding optional objectives and you wouldn't be worrying about sneaking as much, and 2. it wouldn't really feel any different. The game advertises tons of ways to do everything... It really doesn't feel that way in context. You'll always get to your target, and however you got there won't matter once you're there.

But I still gave it a 4/5 because it didn't have many problems. And for people who never played Thief it may be a fascinating experience since no modern game has tackled stealth like this game has (god I wish it had a darkness meter like Thief had).
I personally don't find the game worth 60 bucks by any reason, when it's half that price maybe look into it but you can get a whole lot more bang for your buck with other games out there.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on April 11, 2013
Bought and finished the game in a weekend and doubt I'll fire it up again. For some gamers, that would say more than enough about the game.

But in the interest of clarity, I'll expound. Dishonored had its interesting points, making it worth picking up on sale. The graphics were good and fit the game, though more `Morrowind' than `Skyrim', if you catch the distinction. The backgrounds were excellent and made me wish it were a truly open world because exploration would have offered more than the main storyline.

The storyline was interesting enough, though we've seen it before. Hero unjustly accused, out for revenge and to clear his name, etc and so forth. A few nice twists made it a bit more than the standard revenge story.

The gameplay was...bleh. You can get a total of 10 powers but to finish the game you MAY use three of them. The others are just there to give the illusion of options, I guess. Without Blink, you're hosed; without Dark Vision, you're hosed. Bend Time comes in handy here and there but is hardly a necessity. I have no idea why the others were included; I bought them and never used them. You collect enough runes through the game to buy all of them, which takes a lot of the fun of building a character right out. You don't gain levels so there's no feeling of progress.

And the `stealth' premise just annoys me. I like playing stealthy characters; the whole sneaking and peeking thing is a lot of fun. But you're playing a BODYGUARD, the Spymaster was the main bad guy who sent assassins after you, your Empress, and the Empress' daughter. You get thrown in prison and tortured for six months! And you're supposed to be...what? Kind and caring and understanding of the guys who killed your Empress, kidnapped her daughter, and tortured you?

Yeah, that makes me want to be non-lethal.

Maybe if the stealth actually WORKED it would be more interesting. But basically, the only times the guards can't see you in stealth is...if you're behind something. Does that make the guards stealthy, too, since I can't see them because I'm BEHIND SOMETHING? Oh, I can lean out, that makes it all better. But if I'm three floors up and across a friggen drawbridge, the guards can see me and come running to attack. I shoot them from hiding and somehow they know exactly where to run to.

And if the premise is stealth and non-lethal, WHY do I get a LOT more lethal weapons than non-lethal? You can have a total of ten sleep darts, and somewhere around a hundred killing rounds. You can upgrade the number of regular crossbow bolts and bullets you can carry, but you're limited to ten sleep darts. Why not give me the choice...I can carry 30 bolts and thirty bullets, will I carry hunting broadheads, incendiaries, or sleep-darts; regular ball, explosive, or Care-Bear Snoozy Cuddle bullets? Nope, you get ten sleep-darts, that's it, use them wisely, and remember: we don't want you killing all the guards. Yeah, and there's about a hundred guards per level. Good luck.

Now, having only played through it once and likely never playing it again, I'm sure there's a lot of players out there who enjoyed the challenge of trying to be stealthy and non-lethal. Me, I figured Corvo is pissed and is going to share that righteous anger with the world. You're wearing the wrong uniform, you're not making it home for dinner if I find you. Even if I knock you out from behind, I'm tossing your body over a cliff.

That non-lethal aspect of the storyline might have made sense if Corvo was a thief hired by the Loyalists. As a bodyguard who watched his Empress get stabbed? Not so much. I'm pretty sure the Empress' daughter was cheering me on, telling me to kill everyone who had anything to do with her Mom getting killed. I don't think she was, "Gee, Corvo, I know they killed Mom, tortured and framed you, and kidnapped me, but maybe we could trying TALKING to them, maybe giving them a hug? That makes me feel better when I'm cranky, so give that a try, okay?"

It can be argued my fondness for stealth is directly related to how easy it makes me racking up a high body count. Death from the shadows, that's my method. Thus, Dishonored is not targetted for my style of play. The story premise doesn't fit well with their stated preference, either, so I figure we're even on that score.

All in all, it's an okay game; not as awesome as most reviews would have you believe because it's pretty...and simple. You can beat the game with two powers, and the game leads you by the hand through every aspect of the missions.

Oh, and they don't even give you a mission map. I don't regret buying it but it's not one I'm going to remember fondly ten years or even two months from now.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 2012
I didn't know what to think of this game when I saw the first release of the trailers. The whole Revenge Solves Everything certainly made a good appearance. However, I have seen so many games get hyped up by commercial advertizing that it raises the gamer's expectations so high that the game could never reach them. I got the game on sale, played it, and my final thought is this: AWESOME!!!!

For those of you wondering what this game is like, it is a mix between Deus Ex HR and Assassin's Creed, with Deus Ex style of play with Assassin's Creed ways of dealing with your targets. It is a fun fact that one guy on the dev team for this game was actually on Deus Ex HR's dev team, so it takes a great amount of influence from that style. You are simply given a target, a generaly direction, and a wide array of gear and magic. Then the game says "do it your way". Many games have emphasized the point of free choice, but Dishonored does a fantastic job at it. There is no right way, though some may be more favorable than others, and even that is relative.

The story is simple, which fits well for the game. The Empress is assassinated and you are working with a group of loyalists to take down the ones responsible. That's basically it. The simple story saves plenty on the confusion that complex stories might make. Though Dishonored's story is simple, it does have depth, as long is the player is willing to look into it. There might be books lying around, or certain characters telling stories, plenty of ways to get more in depth on the tale.

As mentioned before, the freedom of choice is a great addition. The suitable range of gear is great as well, suting many different playstyles. Also, you are given the use of magic, which can allow you to teleport, use X-Ray and objective vision, or even possess rats or people so you can weave your way past a heavily guarded area. The game is very rubbery in terms of gameplay style; you can mold it to be more focused on stealth, or you can make it just a "barge in with a knife and kill those who stand in the way" type. The possibilities are abundant.

The only sad things are the shortness of the game and the lack of a New Game+. The game consists of 9 missions only. The actually length comes from more playthroughs trying different styles of play than from the last. The lack of a New Game+ is understandable in this manner: you unlock magic powers through acquiring runes. However, the game doesn't give enough runes to fully fill your array of powers, so you may go through the game without being able to use one. This creates the idea of using that power in the next play through, opening new options and a slightly different challenge. So the lack of a New Game+ is fine, but I would have really liked to continue on with the story.

One gripe that I have is the NPC dialogue. I am a stealth driven player unless spotted, but when I am skulking about, I hear different dialogue from NPCs Most of them consist of grumbling to themselves or coughing and the such. After listening to it, I got a little annoyed by it.

I own this game on a pc, and the game is very adaptive for your operations system. Even at a low graphics level, the game is still visually interesting.

In conclusion, Dishonored is a fine piece of work that certainly exceeded my expectations. Although it is short, I look forward to any DLC that may add to the fun. Until then, I will keep possessing people and walking them into a deathtrap...and maybe feed some guards to rats......hey, I said the game gave you options.
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