So, the Bermuda Triangle wasn’t a myth all along.
Dark Void enters the gaming world as a combination of third person shooter with a difference and a strange type of action flight simulator. If you have ever wanted to know what it feels like to strap on a jet pack and zoom off into the skies then Dark Void is the game for that.
The question is, does it all work well when it’s put into a videogame? Find out, full review after the jump.
Dark Void’s story follows one Mr. William Augustus Grey, a cargo pilot who, while flying a delivery with (and for) an old flame of his named Ava, crashes through the Bermuda Triangle into a strange world of Science Fiction. He finds out about an alien race called The Watchers that once enslaved humans but were banished to this other dimension and how they are up to no good. WIth the help of Nikolia Tesla and his jet packs, he sets out to save the day.
For various reasons, Dark Void is not a great game. The lead character Will, is almost a carbon copy of Nathan Drake from the Uncharted games. He is voiced by the same actor (Nolan North), looks similar, starts the game in a jungle/ruins setting and also has the tendency to shout wisecracks during combat, some lines of which I could have sworn I had heard in Uncharted already.
The ground combat system itself is also based very heavily on the one that can be found in Uncharted as well. While I am not one to complain about influences, when it all comes together, it feels so familiar (yet not as good) that it actually pulls you out of the experience.
Once the jet pack is introduced, things get interesting but just as the jet pack adds to the experience, so too does it introduce some finicky controls that can cause aggravation and irritation. The jet pack also introduces the ability to take cover over vertical spaces as well as the usual horizontal and the ability to fly around and use your pack during combat adds to the fun, but doesn’t feel solid enough to make the game worth playing just for the new mechanic.
Dark Void ultimately feels like some good new ideas, some borrowed ideas and some old ideas all packed into one and while there is definitely potential for something special, the developers may need to work on a sequel to perfect what they have started and create something that offers a truly enjoyable experience.
With a pretty forgettable story and some kinks to work out, Dark Void is not the greatest new IP to hit the shelves. With some refining and a second shot at the idea, the developers may yet create a gem, but with the current releases coming out at this time of year, it will be no surprise to me if the title goes relatively unnoticed.
For Fans Of: Uncharted, Gears of War, Blazing Angels
Combat works well enough but controls can become annoying at times
Not the greatest looking Unreal Engine 3 game and suffers from some framerate loss as well
Average sound and score. Nolan North does a great job with his voice work, but considering the mechanics and setting, feels way too much like Nathan Drake.
Not very long, no reason to play it more than once and no multiplayer.
It may bring in some new ideas but at the end of the day I just didn’t enjoy playing it very much, and that says just about everything that needs to be said.
[Reviewed on Xbox 360]
Last Updated: January 22, 2010