Last year a little game called Dishonored came out and utterly swept me off my feet. I’m not going to try to write a review, but I want to explain why I love this game so much.
I love Dishonored because it puts me in a world filled with intricately linked systems and sets me free to experiment with them. Every item effects every other item in logical ways, producing a depth of interactivity that is incredibly deep, with combinations of systems coming naturally as you think about your environment as an actual world.
I love that Dishonored doesn’t try in vain to deliver photorealistic graphics, and instead utilizes a gorgeous visual style of watercolors and caricatures combined with surrealist lighting. Where so many other games struggle for life-like detail and end up slipping into the uncanny valley, Dishonored uses a non-realistic approach that is evocative and suggestive, making every character and locale a joy to look at.
I love how Dishonored feels when I’m moving around. Every motion in the game is so beautifully smooth, from running to climbing, jumping to sliding. After playing Dishonored it’s hard to go back to games where sprinting is limited and I can’t jump up and grab a ledge to get over a wall. Mirror’s Edge did running so well, and Dishonored surpasses it in every way.
I love playing Dishonored because of all the options I’ve given when approaching a situation. There are countless ways through each area and multiple solutions to each objective, making stealth and combat equally viable playstyles.
I could go on and on, but I’m going to cut this short. Simply put, it’s a game that does nearly everything right. Every single aspect of the gameplay is masterfully crafted and polished to perfection, and even after all the time I’ve spent in it, I always find something new.