Personal Rating: "Worth playing"
Traditional Rating: 7/10
Genre: First Person Shooter/Adventure/Puzzler
Well this was a total surprise, the kind of surprise that I relish and I just utterly adore and love it when games surprise me in ways I was not expecting especially when the critical analysis for the game upon release was more than less than kind. In many ways Deadfall Adventures is the sort of game that just reiterates how out of touch the gaming journalism industry has gotten where AAA games are almost granted enemity because of publishing house clout and money. It's like a snake eating its own tail thinking that its devouring prey or predator when in fact is killing itself. One can only hope!
Thanks to the many sites out there people firmly believe that when a game lands with a rating of 6.5 or below it's considered to be crap or a failure. I simply can't support an industry that propagates this kind of foolishness. I landed up in a heated debate with a mindless minion that a 6.5 rating is not the same as a 4 or a 3 or a 2. In what world is a "C" or a "D" consideration for failure when you can also get an "E" or an "F"?
Anyhoo - I'll be honest - the game was never on my radar. I hardly knew it existed until one day when walking into pay my account I just happened to be the lucky 50th customer and thus landed up winning Deadfall Adventures (they also gave away a PS4 to the lucky 1000th customer that day but alas my timing was off as usual). After getting home and waiting for the game to install I started to peruse the reviews only to find that it seemed like a bit of the dogs breakfast. The picture painted was not very pretty. Ho Hum I said - At least it was free! With expectations lowered I entered the game to see if this really was as bad as the reviews were making it out to be. I have to simply ask what game were the journalists playing because this has been one hell of an incredibly fun experience, especially for someone who grew up adoring Indiana Jones as a kid and thoroughly enjoying The Mummy movies as an adult.
Lets just clear the slate and start by saying this game was never gonna win any awards and I don't think the developers had GOTY in their head whilst developing the game but if you like your matinee adventures you are bound to get some enjoyment out of this title. In fact you will probably thoroughly enjoy it. Taking on the role of James Quatermain (a descendant of the legendary Alan Quatermain), you are drafted into help a US government agency find fragments of a lengendary item known as the Heart of Atlantis. It is slowly revealed that the pieces of the Heart are located within various temples around the globe, temples protected by ancient magic and deadly traps. Thus begins your adventure trying to locate all the pieces before the Nazi or Russian Army locate them, both of which have dubious reasons for wanting to piece the heart back together again, reasons that don't involve the good of all humanity at their core. The hunt is on!
Deadfall Adventures proceeds to throw you into a puzzle adventuring world propagated with blazing gun battles and filled with set pieces lifted straight from the films that populate the genre whilst still adding its own spin to the presentation. You can see the developers have a great love for the genre and that comes across loud and clear in the stunning environments they have created. As you move from Egypt to the Arctic and then onto the Mayan Jungle, the level of detail presented just gets better and better. Deadfall Adventures can really be breathtakingly beautiful at times. Not everything is sunshine and roses though! The character models can be a bit stiff and the voice cast, whilst not bad by any means, could have been better but then that is just nitpicking because if anything the whole script and voice work echoes the b-movie vibe the game is so desperately trying to recreate. The puzzle sections could have also been a bit more on the difficult side but they really just echo the puzzles adventures from the past so if you don't go in expecting to solve a MENSA puzzle fest that is going to make you feel like a smart Aleck then you are still going to enjoy them.
The shooting mechanics are solid, Deadfall Adventures is after all made by the same team that brought us the Painkiller series as well as NecroVision (which I have not yet tried but will now definitely look out for) and some of the adventure set pieces like the runaway mine cart or descent into the heart of the Mayan Temples belly are really quite exhilarating and fun to experience. The game employs a similar mechanic propagated from Alan Wake where a torchlight is required to be shone on the enemies that rise from the dead to protect the treasures they guard in order to burn off magical wards before they can be killed with shotgun, machine gun or pistol. Some of these later encounters are really tense and great fun to clear as rooms fill with mummies and zombie monstrosities out to ensure your bones become dust within the tombs they protect.
The game comes with full muti-player but due to the nature of hardly anyone having purchased the game the servers are empty but all the usual modes like survival, deathmatch and team deathmatch are available. The game is also fully co-opable and had I know this I would have gotten another player involved in the adventure with me. In fact I may still.
I really enjoyed Deadfall Adventures and whilst it certainly didn't present me with anything new - what it did was make me have immense fun whilst playing it. How many AAA titles these days actually employ the fun mechanic? Most just irritate and feel like bouts of work to be honest. I seriously suggest you all look out for this on a sale and pick it up. You won't be disappointed!