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on August 12, 2016
Before the review: the disc itself was sold as a "Like New" condition. It should've been "Very Good" because the disc has some very light chips along the edges a bit, but it didn't affect the game being played. A helpful tip: turn down the "head-bob" level in the settings since it may get you dizzy when you play this for awhile. Onto brass tacks.

I may be late to the party, but better late than never. Dishonored is a quality Stealth, FPS/Action-Adventure game with even some slight RPG elements. It's basic storyline is this: You are Corvo Attano, the royal bodyguard for the Empress and her young daughter in the fictional city of Dunwall (inspired by England during the 19th century). Tragic events occur and you are framed for a crime you didn't commit and promptly arrested and set to be executed. You then undertake a story of revenge and try to clear your name, all while gaining new sorcerous powers and getting the option to either pacify your enemies non-lethally or to brutally indulge your blood-thirst by massacring everyone who stands in your way. This might be more fun, however, it adds to the "chaos" surrounding you and effectively changes the game's ending and setting, due to your bloodlust. An interesting tidbit is that Bethesda intended on having players go through 2 playthroughs where you could try both methods of gameplay, pacifistic and straight-up assassin.

A critique I would have is that it's almost forces you to play the game with having as low chaos as possible to get a good outcome/ending in the storyline, which isn't very easy to do all the time. For starters, if an enemy does spot you, there's no way to dispatch him non-lethally without either running away or shooting him with a sleep dart. It isn't always possible to do either of those in some situations, so sometimes you have no choice but to kill him. It is also incredibly tedious to go through the game by trying to be as stealthy as possible, choke an enemy out, sneak, rinse and repeat. I've tried doing that and my kills are usually so minimal that they are in the single digits in almost every mission and still wound up with having high chaos on almost every mission. Like I said, the game encourages less killing but it definitely isn't as much fun and you barely utilize your powers if you go through doing a non-lethal, stealth playthrough the entire time.

Another aspect I really enjoy is leveling up your character's powers. Each of your powers can be upgraded twice to reach its max level which enables you to either move faster/jump higher, see through walls, summon rats to eat your enemies, etc. There are certain upgrades you'll want to purchase in direct correlation to your playing style. If you're going for stealth, go for things that can help you observe your enemies, slow time, etc. If you want to really have a good time and completely dominate your opponents, go for the offensive powers, which there are actually quite a good selection of them.

So in all, Dishonored has a storyline that's sort of cliché, but the overall gameplay, unique art design, and versatility in gameplay style (despite its limitations and sometimes frustration), gives it a solid score and I believe that you'll really enjoy playing through it.
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on January 4, 2014
After reading all the glowing reviews, I really thought I would enjoy this game but I was rather disappointed. While its true that you can approach the game in different ways, you are penalized for killing so you are clearly steered down the stealth path unless you want everyone looking at you like you are a maniac and getting the dark/bad ending. The problem is that playing strictly stealth can be very tedious and frustrating. In fact, I found the game in general to be rather repetitive and boring. You spend so much time hiding, then searching every nook and cranny and reading boring book excerpts that I was about ready to scream. I finally just ended up killing anyone that was in my way and while this did make the game a bit more interesting at least, it still wasn't that much fun and of course you are penalized for it in the end. There were a few frame rate issues and periodic lags, a few bad character models with giant hands completely out of proportion to the rest of them, an overall washed-out color scheme and very bland atmospheres in general but the actual gameplay and controls seemed fine for the most part. There were definitely some interesting ideas with the powers but overall, this game just wasn't for me - maybe I'm just too impatient. Glad I got it for under $15.
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on May 14, 2013
It took me a while before I finally decided to get this game. When Dishonored was originally released I was mildly interested in it, but not enough to jump on it right away. But as time went by and I found out more about the game, I got more and more intrigued, and now that it's at a very reasonable price, I took a chance and bought the game. It was a chance I'm glad I took. It's quite difficult to classify the type of game that Dishonored is because the gameplay is basically a combination of several different genres. It has first-person shooter elements, yet it's not a first-person shooter. It has stealth elements, yet it's not purely a stealth game. It even has some free-roaming elements with multiple routes you can take to reach your goal, yet (you guessed it) it's not a free-roaming game. All these elements were basically put into a blender and mixed together to form what is truly a unique gaming experience. You play as Corvo Attano, the Royal Protector of an empress who rules over the city of Dunwall which resembles a mid-1800s England. In Dunwall, whaling is a national past-time and the oil extracted from the whales is used as a power source for things such as vehicles, weaponry, and utilities, making for a booming industrial age for the city and the surrounding lands. Unfortunately, a deadly rat plague is decimating the city and causing lots of civil unrest.

After returning from a special assignment to seek aid against the plague from neighboring countries, Corvo meets with his empress, but their reunion is short-lived when the empress is assassinated by mysterious assailants as a result of a plot concocted by members of her own cabinet, and poor Corvo is framed for the murder and thrown in prison to be executed. An unknown party eventually offers a helping hand to Corvo and he is able to escape from the prison. Afterwards, his new benefactors recruit the former Royal Protector as their assassin and give him the task of doing away with those who framed him and murdered the empress, all in the hopes of putting the late empress's daughter on her rightful throne. While the story for Dishonored is a bit light from a narrative standpoint, it provides a very intriguing and attention grabbing tale through lots of notes, journals, and audiographs (audio recordings) that you find throughout missions, not to mention plenty of moments where you can listen in on conversations that not only provide mission clues, but also provide further insight on the in-game world and its lore. The most noticeable characteristic about this game is its emphasis on making choices. Pretty much everything you do or don't do in this game will have a measurable impact on how you succeed on your missions, on which missions you will or will not be able to undertake, and even how the story ends. For every action you take there WILL be some form of reaction.

Corvo has a nice collection of weapons and magic abilities that will aid him on his missions, which you can access through a weapon wheel or hot key them to the directional buttons. He always wields a blade in his right hand, and with his left hand he can use other projectile weapons such as a pistol, a crossbow (with standard, explosive, or sedative bolts), grenades, or a special mine that shoots out metal shards when an enemy makes contact with it. These weapons can be upgraded between missions at Corvo's hideout with a particular inventor named Piero, and bringing him special blueprints that can be found during missions provides Corvo with other upgrades (use the lenses on his mask to zoom in on distant enemies or points of interest, have his boots make less noise when he moves around, or increase the durability of his armor). More ammunition and restorative items can also be purchased from Piero, or found during missions in different locations or looted from downed enemies. Aside from his projectile weapons, Corvo can use his left hand to wield different magic abilities he gains from the mysterious, supernatural being known as the Outsider.

A couple of his most important abilities which let him sneak around much more easily are Blink, which lets him teleport to distant spots with pinpoint precision, and Dark Vision, which lets him see nearby enemies and special objects through walls and other obstructions. Other magic abilities he gains include being able to summon a swarm of rats to attack enemies, use possession to temporarily take control of animals or people, slow down/stop time to further assist in either stealth or combat, use a windblast to push back or kill enemies, and have the bodies of slain enemies disintegrate into ash to avoid having them discovered by other enemies. You don't automatically gain these powers or their respective upgrades as the story goes on though, instead you have to buy them by collecting runes which are scattered throughout the levels. Bone charms can also be found in each level and equipping them offers little bonuses such as being able to move more quickly while sneaking, swinging your sword more quickly, gaining more health when using a health potion, etc. The exact locations of runes and bone charms can be pointed out to you with the item known as the Heart, but actually getting to them can be tricky at times, especially when they're surrounded by many enemies or locked in safes. Even though collecting these things are optional, it's normally worth the time to get a hold of as many of them as you can, especially the runes.

Each mission you go on will put you in a rather expansive level where the goal is normally to get into a well guarded building or hideout, eliminate a target, and then make your way out in one piece. The environments themselves aren't all that different from each other (normally lots of buildings, mansions, and occasionally some sewers), but they're very well laid out and give you lots of options with regards to completing your missions. While you're pretty much always going from point A to point B and your goal is pointed out to you by an on-screen cursor, there are normally multiple routes you can take to get to where you need to go. For example, if you need to get past a security gate with an electrical field that will incinerate anyone but a city guard, you can do one of several things: cut the power to the electrical field and stroll right through the gate, go around the gate by using a nearby alley or a rooftop, possess a city guard and walk through the electrical field, etc. Or if you need to get into a well defended building you can teleport and jump your way up to get in through a second floor window or possess a rat and get in the building through a ventilation duct. You normally have many routes to take to your goal, it's just up to you to find them. Another aspect in which you have options is in dealing with your enemies. When sneaking up behind an enemy or other characters you can choose to kill them with a quick stab in the neck or grab them in a chokehold to knock them out, after which you can move the body and hide it somewhere so it doesn't get discovered. If you don't want to take out the enemy and simply need a key they're carrying to get past a locked door, you can pickpocket them and then leave the enemy alone.

Choosing whether or not to kill someone does more than just affect the way you play the game, it also affects how civilians and friendly NPCs view you, which in the long run dictates whether you get the more favorable ending or the darker ending. In this regard, the game's Chaos system works very much like a more realistic rendition of your classic video game karma system. Dealing with your enemies in a non-lethal manner and helping other characters keeps Chaos at a low level, whereas ruthlessly slaying all those in front of you will raise your Chaos level. Even if you only kill enemies and spare innocents, being too bloodthirsty has an impact on your overall image; society tends to look down on ruthless killers in spite of how righteous their goals may be. That's not to say that you can't kill anyone if you want the good ending. Killing a handful of enemies or targets here and there won't affect the Chaos level all that much, but a high body count (about 10 or more per mission) will create some negative vibes and raise the Chaos levels. A high Chaos level will result in the presence of more enemies and dangers to stand in your way. As I assume most gamers did when they played this game, I rarely killed enemies, no more than 5 per mission, and beat the game with a low Chaos level. It's actually possible to beat this game without taking a single life; even your main assassination targets can be dealt with through non-lethal (and very clever) means, although in several cases they normally involve going off the beaten path and completing optional side missions for other characters.

Speaking of enemies, there's not a huge variety to them, but they do keep things interesting. The city guards, thugs, and assassins of Dunwall can all be dealt with in the same manner whether it's through stealth or direct combat, and while most use guns and swords, others have special weapons or abilities of their own like using whiskey bottles to blow fire breath at you or their own teleportation abilities. Weepers are somewhat different; they're people who have succumbed to the later stages of the rat plague with blood "weeping" from their eyes (and they vomit out a lot of blood too). Similarly to zombies, they shamble around aimlessly and automatically attack anyone else within reach by biting them, but they can be incapacitated or killed just as easily as any regular human enemy. The most unique enemies are the Tallboys, which are heavily armored city guards on mechanical stilts armed with explosive arrow launchers. Not only are they the most physically imposing enemies, but they cannot be knocked unconscious (under normal circumstances), so if you're going for a no-kill playthrough, then they basically have to be avoided completely.

Other enemies include swarms of rats, guard dogs, large water mollusks that spit acid, and even hostile fish who will attack you if you swim too close to them (killing these enemies has no impact on your Chaos level). I have only one complaint with Dishonored: the combat isn't the best. While it is fun to cut into your enemies with your blade, shoot them with your weapons, or fling them away with a blast of wind, the first-person perspective doesn't make physical combat all that graceful, although I will say that the way Corvo kills certain important targets is quite awesome. One other thing I should mention is that it's very easy to make a mistake in this game that will cause you to fail a mission. One very memorable screw up was when I knocked out a group of thugs while sneaking into their hideout, then when I returned later to talk to their leader, he attacked me and the mission failed because he found the knocked out thugs in his hideout (I was unaware that I didn't actually have to knock out the thugs when I first entered their hideout).

Thankfully, the game has one of the best save systems I've ever encountered, so if you happen to do something stupid like unintentionally kill someone you didn't mean to kill, then you can easily load a previous save and undo the mistake. The game autosaves pretty regularly and you can manually save your game at any time when outside of combat. Each time the game saves, instead of overwriting previous saves, it stores it in the game's save file so you can have multiple saves even in one mission. You can even replay completed missions from the main menu, but loading an older mission will have you lose your progress on later missions. In the end, Dishonored is more of a thinking man's (or woman's) game and rewards the patient gamer who takes the time to explore and think his way past obstacles and challenges. I like how this game actually encourages you to plan everything out and makes you consider whether to take a life or to spare one. That being said, you still have the option to go in guns blazing and go for your standard video game "killfest", but again, this will result in more enemies to deal with and a less favorable ending (although I imagine some gamers won't care one way or the other). While Dishonored isn't everyone's cup of tea and doesn't have the best combat, it is definitely one of the most interesting of all the games I've played and it has lots of replay value for those who like to see all the different ways they can complete different tasks.

This part will cover the two DLCs for Dishonored: The Knife of Dunwall and its sequel The Brigmore Witches. These two DLCs let you take up the blade of Daud, the assassin who murdered the empress and kick started Corvo's adventure in the main game. The story actually begins with the player experiencing the opening scene of the main game with the empress's murder from Daud's point of view. After the deed is done, Daud is contacted by the Outsider and is sent on his final mission before he meets his fated end. Controlling Daud is, as expected, very similar to controlling Corvo and he'll be making use of a lot of the same weapons and abilities, although there are a few differences with Daud's gameplay. Like Corvo, he wields a blade in his right hand and with his left hand he can use his ranged weapons and magic abilities. Starting with The Knife of Dunwall, Daud's weapons include a wristbow (that shoots the usual normal, explosive, and sedative bolts), a pistol, grenades, and new weapons such as arc mines (which vaporizes enemies), stun mines (which knocks out enemies), and choke dust (which momentarily disorients enemies so you can attack or escape from them).

In The Brigmore Witches, the choke dust can be upgraded to baffle dust, which will have disoriented enemies forget you are there and they will go back to their regular patrols. It actually would have been nice if these new weapons had been available for Corvo in the main game since they're all quite useful when using a stealthy approach. Daud has the same Bend Time and Shadow Kill abilities as Corvo, although he lacks the Rat Swarm and Windblast abilities. Fortunately, his other abilities are improvements over Corvo's. Daud's version of Blink allows him to teleport to distant spots, but with the added benefit of freezing time as long as the player doesn't move Daud with the left stick. This allows the player to aim and time teleportations with much greater precision, even in the middle of a jump. His Void Gaze works like a combination of Corvo's Dark Vision and Heart item: it lets him see enemies and important items through walls, and also points out the locations of runes and bone charms (although it lacks the range of the Heart). Daud can also summon one of his assassins to fight alongside him for a time. In The Brigmore Witches, Daud gains the Pull ability, which lets him telekinetically pull items and even enemies towards him. This ability can be very handy in pick pocketing enemies or grabbing other important items from a safe vantage point.

Between missions, Daud can buy more ammunition and recovery items, as well as upgrades to his weapons and gadgets. He can even purchase favors from his assassins and paid contacts that have certain effects on his missions. These favors include runes being left in easier to find locations, safe combinations being etched on walls, and alternate entry points being opened up. Another addition in The Brigmore Witches are corrupted bone charms, which offer both advantages and disadvantages to Daud's performance. One lets Daud do more damage to his enemies with his blade, but also has him swing his blade more slowly, and another one has Daud lose mana instead of health when suffering damage from enemy attacks, but it also keeps him from regenerating his mana. Just like in the main game, Chaos plays a role in changing up the gameplay and the story's ending, but to a somewhat lesser degree than the main game. The player can make Daud carve his way past all his enemies, knock them all out for a no-kill playthrough, or anything in between (although Daud going the fully non-lethal route doesn't make that much sense to me from a story perspective since, unlike the silent protagonist Corvo, Daud has already been established as a ruthless assassin in the main game).

Most of the enemies are basically the same as the ones in the main game, except for three new enemies: the tough butchers who wield powered buzz saws that can kill you quickly if you're not careful, witches with deadly supernatural powers, and gravehounds that relentlessly attack you until they're completely pulverized. The stories for the DLCs are also quite interesting and add a further layer of depth to the tale of Dishonored, all from a very interesting perspective. These DLCs are worth a purchase if you loved the main game of Dishonored and they add a hefty amount of extra gameplay for those who like to take their time and explore their surroundings. Aside from the great gameplay, just finding out about Daud's previously unknown role in the main game's story and seeing how his tale ties in with Corvo's makes getting these DLCs a worthy investment.
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on January 14, 2014
I’d give it 4.5 stars, which I rounded up to 5. The game was definitely not as I thought it would be. The entire game had a Bioshock-ish feel with its own atmospheric identity, which is its best feat. The set-pieces are varied.

Unfortunately the plot is not nearly as good as it could be, but the execution with the Bioshock-esque recordings etc. make a mediocre plot a better than average one. I think that alone makes it a worthwhile game to play. The past few years games have been way too focused on cutscenes. Luckily, Dishonored does not have many, so I can’t complain about the plot too much. Out of all of these stealth games this generation of games, I think the controls with this one seemed the easiest to use. Naturally, with any of these covert stealth games, the controls can be frustrating and you just want to pry yourself into your TV screen because switching between the powers is sometimes not as quick as one would desire.

The powers are awesome. One thing I really liked is that you can combo them to how you would like to play. Many say that the game does kind of punish you for being what you are, an assassin, which is a valid point. However, it is definitely significantly more difficult to keep the death count low, which is the point. The game length was fine. It promotes exploring. I found though that near the end I was getting tired of it though and just slaughtered everyon
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on December 16, 2012
I see many reviewers giving good ratings for this game while being quite negative in their review.
It's not a bad game but it's not really worth playing.
I would not recommend this game, there are many better recent games.

Here are the things I would change to make it better :

0- Improve stealth killing mechanism
How many times, I was behind an opponent, but because I was not perfectly aligned or at perfect distance, I could not "stealth kill" and got detected instead.
By stealth kill, I mean non-lethal : choke-out holds

1- Improve "see through walls"
It's working fine BUT what's the point of making a good looking game, if players use X-RAY vision (aka Dark Vision) which makes everything looks yellow ...

2- Improve graphics
Yeah sometimes it looked great, but for example, faces/visages were not that great

3- Make it easier to have the "good ending"
At least, make it more obvious, at the start of the game, that it's important to kill as less opponents as possible.
Let the player knows how many kills (or some kind of indication) he needs to move to the dark side or to get back to the bright side

4- Make a less dark atmosphere
Is it life not enough dark already ?
Personal preference.

5- Improve load/save time

6- Make it easier to fight with opponents standing near

7- More original
Yeah, I felt like playing a mix of Bioshock, Batman and AC.

8- Put less items to "loot"
As much as I liked to find where were the Runes, I disliked to spend so much time taking money/items everywhere.
Well, I could have just let the money there, which I did often but when you start a game, you never know if you gonna need all that money, etc.

9- Improve "lifetime"
I know many will disagree but multiplayer gives you one reason to not rent or resell the game

10- Let us see/hear the hero !!!
Maybe the biggest flaw

11- Improve translation (french)
Ok I should have played it in English.
But for people who can't, the voice of Horatio Caine from CSI Miami for all the guards, seriously ?

12- Let us kill instead of playing stealth and still have the good end
By playing stealth all the time (or almost), you're missing out on interesting techniques/abilities/strategy.

13- Improve the Blink power
Too hard to tell if the distance is too far to be reached via Blink

14- Give the powers earlier in the game
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on July 9, 2013
This game was pretty cool and kind of a refreshing play, mainly do to the fact that the player has options about how he or she wants to go about undertaking the game! You can go full bore and just kill everyone, or there is ways to sneak around, and you can also render guards unconsious if you would rather instead of killing them. On my first time through, I experimented with several different ways of doing things and I tried out all the various different weapons & abilities, just to get a taste of everything and find out how I most preferred going about things.

I only had one main gripe about the game, and it was an ever so small annoyance too: Occasionally trying to chose a weapon or skill from the wheel, (especially as you earn more abilities & such) was sometimes a bit glitchy. For example, there were times later in the game that I was trying to chose my pistol with the regular shots over this one with explosive rounds and it would give me the pistol with the explosive rounds, and so on. It was a slight bit frustrating, but fortunately that only happened every once in a while.

The game was a little shorter than I was expecting, but then again it would seem short, especially after playing on a game like Skyrim off & on throughout many months. So don't let that deter you, because the game is actually a decent length...I'd say roughly around 15 hours. And just because I had no life for 2 days and sat on my arse & played it throughout much of release day and the following Wednesday, lulz.
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on March 24, 2015
This game allows you to make decisions on how to play (you can kill everyone, or you can be stealthy) and it changes the outcome of the game. The problem is that it is extremely difficult not to kill people. I have died many times trying to get by in the shadows. The gameplay is off as well, which makes it tough to be stealthy. I found that there was too much information thrown at you through audio and books that I frankly did not care about. I was very excited to play this game, but it did not live up to my expectations. I will say that the game got better as I continued to play it, but not enough to make me want to play it again to see if there was a different outcome.
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on September 3, 2015
I bought this game for about $25 and it is worth every penny! If you like games like Bioshock or Wolfenstien then you will really enjoy this game. (sorry i'm not giving any spoilers.) The Game OF The Year Edition come with ALL the DLC content ON THE DISC so there is no need to even have an internet connection and all of the DLCs cost over $40 if bought separately so this is a really good value! To sum it up, If you like FPS with a fantasy (not realistic ) twist like having super powers that let you posses living creatures or teleport short distances as part of the game play then you will enjoy this game.
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on November 30, 2012
This game is the best I have played in a long time. Scenery, mood and graphics are different and very good. Game takes the best of other good games and molds in in a unique way. Stealth is actually fun. I appreciate the fact that you don't have to look at maps constantly to tell where to go as well as using some stupid radar to tell that enemies are around "I am talking about you Deus EX Hr". You need to rely on sound, peeking through keyholes and peering out to see threats. Much better done than other stealth type games I have played. One thing that makes this game so good is side missions are not simply go there and do this over and over.They were not simply added on to increase game length. Again talking about you Deus ex. Also, as many have mentioned there are so many different ways to approach this game. This is my summary, 1) very fun game 2) great atmosphere 3) really cool special powers 4) many ways to play game 5) interesting and unique story 6) excellent save system 7)high replayabiity 8) good length no added on sections leading to monotony . I would give this game 4.7 rating but I don't believe any game yet is a perfect 5.
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on March 10, 2013
Great graphics, bone-chilling score and sound effects, great storyline, interesting and sometimes creepy characters makes for one fantastic game.

I don't play any FPS, so this is my first "first-person" game, as I only (and I mean only) play third-person action/adventure games. So if you're like me, don't shy away from this game!

I took the stealth route, which required an immense amount of patience as I tend to be a completionist and wanted to explore every cranny. Kind of hard when you need to stay hidden and you don't know where anything is, so that was probably not the best decision. Also, there are some frustrating aspects of the game, like Corvo doing something you didn't intend him to do, but I chalk that up to me sucking more than the game controls itself. Nonetheless, none of that mattered, as I thought the game was excellently written and executed, and I thoroughly enjoyed the gameplay. I love this game!!!

The fact that you can replay missions and not replay the whole game in sequence is a nice feature, too.
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