Geplaatst: 1 juli
For the full price - forget about it. When there is a big sale
on, something around 75% off - still think twice. The The whole game is a series of disappointinng shortfalls. Here's my story explaning why:
I noticed Contrast over a year ago and the concept of the game, coupled with what I saw on the trailers and in the screenshots, had me really wanting this game. The price though was a bit steep, so I only got it on sale recently. And I'm mighty glad I waited. Without further ado, here's what's wrong with the game.
First of all, the story
feels like scribbled down on a knee five minutes before the writers had a deadline to submit it. Nothing to keep the player interested, just a generic tale of a child and her parents don't quite form a perfect family. The characters, save the protagonist, are shallow, one-dimensional and there's little reason for anyone to form any sort of emotional bond with them. The only chance of livening up the plot when the player discovers collectibles pertaining to Dawn and Vincenzo in the last act
is merely reduced to finding some collectibles and one scene just before the credits.
Secondly, the gameplay
is, to put it bluntly, rubbish. Platformers in the 90's offered better game mechanics. The fantasticly promising concept of manipulating lights and shifting between shadows and the 'real' world is there just so you can jump on some platforms and move one or two boxes around. Nothing else. And one more thing here: the player character gains some skills for no apparent reason and then hardly ever uses them.
are simple but even there you can find an issue, as the shifting mechanism often has a mind of its own and Dawn gets thrown off the platforms without the fault on the side of the player.Graphics
. To be fair, the game looks alright. Nothing remarkable though. The models are edgy, locations deserted for the most part (I'm talking here about items, not characters - the lack of the latter is just part of the game) but the overall feeling is positive. The atmosphere in the locations is nice, kind of gloomy and decadent at the same time.
On the other hand, the animations
is where the game should deliver and fails completely. The protagonist is said to be an acrobat. Therefore, her moves should be fluent, graceful and light, which they only are when the character is walking slowly or standing still and I'm not convinced that this should be the case in an action game. The animations of Dawn interacting with objects or moving stuff, as well as thhe animations of all other characters feel terribly outdated.
Finally, the music
, where the game promises much but delivers little. Despite what you might think having seen the trailers, there is in fact very litle music in the game. Soundtrack activates only when the player apporaches a certain location. Truth be told, the best piece of music was the one in the main menu. Character voicing is just wrong, its highlight being Dawn, who simply says nothing throughout the entire game.
Fortunately, Contrast is a very short game, in jusr 4 hours I manged to obtain a 100% playthrough. I say fortunately because I could not bear any more of the feeling that there's a game that could have been brilliant and turned out mediocre.
- Great noir setting
- Fairly good graphics
- Some nice music
- Great protagonist
- Light/shadow manipulation reduced to one power
- Uninteresting, unoriginal storyline
- All other characters except the protagonist
- Very short
- Animations from 15 years ago
- Gameplay from 20 years ago
- Imprecise controls
- Wasted potential everywhere
A final note: the ending hints, rather obviously, at a sequel. Unless the developers do some serious work to deliver a more complete experience with a story and gameplay to match its lovely graphics style its going to be, at least for me, a flop. So a word to the producers: Please, please do it right, because I so want the concept to be given the game it deserves.