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Darksiders series is indeed one of the "hidden gems;" the series is quite famous, but not as famous as Devil May Cry or other hack-&-slash, platform, "find-a-thing-to-open-a-thing." The game is not incredibly innovative, yet the execution of many mechanics is solid, and the experience is mostly pleasant. 

For instance, fighting demons and monsters is a lot of fun from the beginning of the game because of how satisfying War swings his big-ass sword... Chaoseater... it feels very "Berserk style," - not a sword but a huge chunk of iron, and you can feel the weight of it. Other weapons such as the scythe and gauntlet look great (especially the scythe effects), yet they also feel redundant. I found myself using Chaoseater for 80-90% since it has more damage. I think adding an alternative, and more importantly, faster way for earning experience for other weapons would not be a bad idea. My Chaoseater sword was Level 2 when I got the Tremor Gauntlet (Level 0), and I couldn't fucking care less about using it as the difference between damage was seen even without "numbers." Maybe adding special challenges or secret items to faster gain levels for weapons that are obtained later in a game.

Obtaining different items for opening special doors or getting in places/locations that were unavailable before is one of the main features for Zelda-like games. Darksiders has at least 6 of those such as a hook and a horn, and for the most part using them helped to gain some variability. However, some later parts of the game require you to switch between four of these items, plus I wanted to use the fifth one "revolver," plus I wanted to have some potions on the quick menu, and having all of the skills would be great too. HA! SCREW YOU! - says user interface. Both quick menus have only four slots, so if you want to switch between more than five things, gotta go to the main menu (which is not very intuitive either). Moreover, the quick item menu actually has only three slots as the fourth one is used for switching secondary weapons. The solution is so simple! Add instead a weapon/item wheel; just one button/key plus analog stick or mouse wheel for switching. Additionally, it could've solved the problem of having to dodge, block, and use special "combos" with the same bloody button RB or R1; which was very inconvenient in many situations.

The game has minor flaws, and this fact is absolutely normal, yet I'd like to focus on a problem when only one level can spoil the enjoyment of the game. I'm talking about the pre-pre-end level called The Black Throne, and.. oh boy... it bored the shit out me. Before the Black Throne, each level had a nice balanced combination of battling, platforming, and solving puzzles; plus some additional one-time elements like flying on the back of a beast and shooting angles (mmm... priceless...). The Black Throne level, on the other hand, consisted of platforming and solving easy puzzles, yet the biggest puzzle was where to go because of terrible level design. I have a suspicion that another person or team was responsible for designing the Black Throne since it felt vastly different from the rest of the game. The camera has a quite "limited" field of view, but it didn't bother me until I started to struggle to navigate through some of the narrow corridors of the Black Throne. The level felt empty (similar halls... very similar textures... similar sub-bosses), and I got tired of waiting for different mechanisms to get the job done and tired of waiting for elevators to get to the destination. Because of this copy/paste'ish repetitiveness, it felt "artificially lengthy." There are several levels that are especially memorable because they looked epic and grand (e.g. parts of Ashlands, Eden and Scalding Gallow), yet the Black Throne is memorable for its sheer bad and dull design. 

Why did it happen? Budget cuts? Rushing before the release? I think about it as a great example of how to not design a level since especially at the end of the game, beating it felt like a special kind of torture.

Great game/terrible level.

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