Xbox 360 Review: Dark

Dracula would be ashamed…

Dark is a stealth-based action game featuring…you guessed it, vampires. The most overused monsters of the bunch, I personally think the genre has been tapped out but there are some who actually like The Twilight Saga and that’s obviously who the game is aimed at.
The story follows Eric Bane, a new vampire who is trying to stop becoming a mindless ghoul and the solution is basic…kill older vampires. The story itself is full of holes and is just not that interesting, not to mention the dire voice-acting and bad pacing. I tuned out pretty early if I’m honest, it just didn’t grip me at all and the presentation leaves a lot to be desired.

Then there’s the actual gameplay, which is a combination of stealth and combat. There are nods to games like Dishonored’s teleportation ability and Batman Arkham Asylum/City’s Detective Mode which is a blessing, but the stealth itself is just dire…enemies just seem oblivious to you, I came across areas where I would blood suck someone almost next to another and them not noticing, while others just seem to stand in the same position and await death from you.
You will face a bigger challenge with ghouls and armoured vampires later in the game, but it’s still a fairly easy game…especially once you’ve upgraded your abilities, but the game just feels incredibly clunky and rushed. The camera is also problematic, switching to first-person when moving bodies and just generally being awkward.

The only good thing about Dark is its cel-shaded art style, it’s a nice look and while the game itself looks average, the character models don’t look too bad on the whole. It’s just a shame that the voice-acting is truly awful and the “Mass Effect-style” conversations add new info about the story, but it’s just very bland.

The Verdict

Dark has some good ideas, but it’s let down with poor AI, bad game design, a dull story and terrible voice-acting. It’s also clunky to control, not to mention being completely forgettable. As much as I dislike Twilight fans, even I wouldn’t recommend this to them. I wish I could find a compelling reason to suggest Dark, but I just can’t.