Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A short REVIEW - Dishonored : The Knife of Dunwall DLC.


Dishonored is a game that really invites players to come in, sit down and stay awhile, exploring the depressing and fantastical city of Dunwall, taking sneaky advantage of all your wicked-cool powers (but mostly and especially Blink).  It's not a game to be quickly chugged and tossed aside - this is a game to be savored.  A game one spends hours in, poking through the estates of the wealthy, eavesdropping on juicy gossip, nosing around dark corners and sewer grates for a precious Coin of 10 - immersed in and ensconced by this eerily beautiful world.

If one loved Dishonored as I do, and spends their time with the game as I do - exploring and discovering and testing the boundaries of its possibility - The Knife of Dunwall DLC is a great deal.

A different character, a different story, but the mechanics are almost entirely identical.  The only misstep was that, in place of a still-beating mechanical heart which directs you towards collectible power-ups, you now have to rely on a Void Gaze ability which shows them in the environment - but not if you're too far away - which can lead to some missed items.


But that's the only error, here.  What we have are two-and-a-half missions (the last one's a bit short) that ask for all the commitment of Dishonored's main campaign.  It probably took me close to ten hours to clear a single playthrough of this DLC, and as with the main campaign you can choose to go "high chaos" (kill everyone) or "low chaos" (kill no one), with low chaos providing the meanest challenge.

Your chaotic alignment affects the story, but that's not what I loved most about The Knife of Dunwall.

One of the greatest lacks of Dishonored, I felt - or at least a void I wished it had filled - was the fact that they presented this marvelous, newly-industrialized world built on whale oil, and then never gave you a really good look at the whales.

There's this part of me - the part that spent my childhood sifting through National Geographics and marveling at the exotic life that fills our world - that was deeply disappointed we never got an up-close look at those wonderful whiskered whales the ships of Dunwall carted back and forth.

Well, the first mission of The Knife of Dunwall takes place in an entirely new area - the Rothwild Slaughterhouse.

Ten bucks, between eight and twenty hours or playtime, and a deeper look at the enchanting world of Dishonored.  Delightful.

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