Zom­bie apoc­a­lypse a bit of fun

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Tech - MIKE WIL­COX mike@hy­per­ac­tiveg­ames.com

NOT so long ago, note­wor­thy down­load­able games were a rare find. These days, how­ever, it seems some of the most mem­o­rable re­leases are mak­ing their dig­i­tal de­but, and at a frac­tion of the price of boxed games you buy off the shelf.

En­ter Dead­light, an­other bud­get-friendly, bite- sized game with block­buster as­pi­ra­tions.

In Dead­light, the year is 1986, and you play a haunted man in search of his wife and daugh­ter as he jour­neys across the US in the wake of a zom­bie apoc­a­lypse.

The plot is for­mu­laic, right down to the cast of cliche char­ac­ters. How­ever, what the script lacks in orig­i­nal­ity, it does make up for with solid voice act­ing and the oc­ca­sional un­ex­pected, pro­found idea.

These can be found lit­tered throughout the game’s fu­sion of sur­vival hor­ror and cin­e­matic plat­form gam­ing.

Com­bat is lim­ited to an axe that re­quires a con­stantly de­plet­ing stam­ina, along with a cou­ple of firearms and a ra­tion of ammo.

The game’s var­i­ous lev­els al­ter­nate be­tween you hav­ing to use stealth or force, and fig­ur­ing out which tac­tic works best in each sit­u­a­tion is def­i­nitely one of Dead­light’s most ap­peal­ing fea­tures.

The game’s fa­mil­iar plat­form­ing game­play merges a stylish sil­hou­et­ted visual style with a clas­sic 2D side scrolling move­ment, al­though ev­ery­thing around the game­play is still in full 3D. The over­all pre­sen­ta­tion is im­pres­sive, in­clud­ing the comic book style cut scenes that help tell the story be­tween lev­els.

On oc­ca­sions, I did run into sit­u­a­tions where it wasn’t clear how to progress, only to find it sim­ply re­quired a pixel per­fect jump to move on. Over­com­ing these chal­lenges was ul­ti­mately re­ward­ing, though some ca­sual gamers may not have the same pa­tience to per­sist. The story is far from per­fect, but Dead­light’s dis­turb­ing at­mos­phere and re­fresh­ing game­play make it a win­ner.

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