Darkwatch

Overview

Before I became an editor around five years ago or so, I always wondered what the development process was like of a video game. And even now I still wonder sometimes of some of the behind-the-scenes action that we never see. Well with today’s game, we heard quite a bit about the behind the scenes work on Darkwatch, a horror/western style game that really sounded promising when Sammy Studios held the rights for the game. Well now it has finally made its way onto store shelves and should we be happy it did? Read our full review to find out.

Gameplay

One of the initial draws of Darkwatch is not only the development story, but more so the actual in-game story. I am a huge western fan and have been hoping for more western gun slinging type games to hit store shelves. This is not your typical western though, as it takes on a much "darker" approach. In Darkwatch, you play as Jericho Cross, a train robber who makes a bad choice of trains to rob when he comes across the Vampire Lord Lazarus. The story really has some great cut scenes and the story as a whole is fantastic. I found it to be interesting from start to finish and felt that the game really did a fantastic job of going outside of the box and trying a different type of story. Let me tell you it was a breath of fresh air after the countless historical shooters flooding the market.

I have found a number of games to really have immersive storylines but to really lack in terms of gameplay. In this aspect, Darkwatch is different as the gameplay turns out to be just as impressive as the story. The single player mode is really fast-paced, starting off strong and stays that way until the end. The game really slings you with a host of different weapons to choose from. Usually I don’t mention the weapons as they don’t really change the overall experience in my eyes, but the amount of variety in this game is really something to be impressed by.

One of the things I would have liked improved in the single player was to add more variety to the mode. There are some a few levels that try some different things, like horse back riding, but there are not enough of these to really fill the needed variety. You can see the developers were on the right track by putting some of these different types of activities in there but in the end they still needed to put more variety into this game. It is like they give you tastes of other elements that are great and then give you very little of them.

The game’s single player as a whole is a bit short, but I have to say that I enjoyed it immensely. I liked how the story and the gameplay as a whole just really came together in a very nice and entertaining package.

The game also has Xbox Live support, which in my opinion was good but nowhere near as good as the potential of the game as it could have been. The mode does include some different modes, like a Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, and of course Capture The Flag. The mode supports up to sixteen players, which is all well and good, although I would have liked more modes to choose from online. With that being said the online mode is very impressive and is a ton of fun to play. I wouldn’t say it’s as good as some of the top FPS out on the market, but it definitely has a nice smooth feel to it that makes it a lot of fun to play.

Overall Darkwatch is not the best FPS on the market but it manages to remain impressive with a very interesting plot line with solid and colorful gameplay to really make for an impressive experience. The game was missing some added depth and more modes in the multiplayer category but the overall feel of this game were truly a memorable one.

Graphics

One of the strongest points that Darkwatch has going for it is the style in which the game is presented which is really like a cross between a comic book and its own unique style. The character models in the game are truly a thing of beauty and the amount of detail placed on all of the character models was truly remarkable.

I was most impressed with how smooth this game played and how well the frame rate held up. This is one of those games that I thought was going to struggle in this category but from what I saw with Darkwatch it was really flawless. And to top it all of the cut scenes and the environments were truly remarkable. This game is a great looking game that has a very unique design compared to the typical FPS out there.

Fun Factor

One of the downsides to Darkwatch is that the single player mode is really short compared to a lot of the other action games out there on the market today. With that being said, the multiplayer is definitely an enjoyable experience that really offers up quite a bit of variety and although is not overflowing with options is still a lot of fun. I think in the end what makes this game fun is the different style approach that the game takes and for that you have to enjoy the creativeness of Darkwatch.

Overall

Darkwatch is one of the more unique first person shooters to be released this year and I must say if you appreciate originality and don’t mind that the single player is a bit short, than you’re going to enjoy Darkwatch. The developers have done a great job taking a great story and backing it up with fun and entertaining gameplay, not to mention gorgeous visuals to boot.

The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.