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Dishonored review
by Serge Ulankin

Stupid rats, plague. Could the city get any worse? Chances are very good. Since you have to cut or sneak your way through Dunwall filled with guards, assassins, and weepers with no time to pause for whisky and cigars. Never doubt it – Dishonored is a great game that constantly keeps you wired.

Speaking about level design, weapons and spells, enemies, this is one of the best games I have ever played. Everything is well thought-out, and as a result you get much freedom when it comes to ways of accomplishing the missions. The game doesn't teach you much, it just explains how this weapon or that spell work and lets you use them as you please. So you can stop time, fire bolts and attach bombs to them; you can possess anybody and casually walk to a safe place to choke the poor guy down; you can acquire Shadow Kill ability (which makes bodies of those you kill turn to ashes immediately) and just kill everybody you see leaving no traces of a bloodbath behind; you can blink your way over the roofs without setting foot on the ground, coz, you know, the floor is lava!

[minor and major story spoilers below]
Although I don't understand the praise the storyline got (to me it was clichéd through and through), I can't deny that the characters and the setting are well-made. Even minor characters have background stories and hidden desires and fears that can easily be revealed with the help of one particular device. The world is a solid mix of dark fantasy, zombie post-apocalypses, and well-known dystopian novels with a bunch of retrofuturistic and steampunk elements.

Although I'd say that there are some unfinished storylines within the game: like you'll never truly understand who the hell Granny Rags is. Sure, she is the old scary witch that could earn some respect even from The Witcher's Ladies of the Wood for her creepiness. But given how detailed some parts of Dishonored is, you always wait for some kind of an explanation and Granny Rags gets none. The same goes to Daud, the leader of assassins. When you manage to ‘neautralize’ him in a ‘non-lethal’ way by stealing his pouch, you kind of wait for his reaction to be ultimately revealed. Was he scared to death that you had got so close but spared his life? Did he shit some bricks? Was he furious with his bodyguards that couldn't stop Corvo coming?

My biggest resentment comes from the thing that needs a bit of explanation for those who haven't played the game. Dishonored lets you choose you own way to complete missions – that's true – but how you tackle them affects the course of the story and the ending. As the game puts it, killing lots of enemies will cause more rats and more weepers in the streets, while adopting a stealthier approach will lead to a happier and lighter outcome. At the same time, if you decide to neutralize Campbell in a non-lethal way (which is ‘good’), you'll find him later as a weeper, living the last days of his life in some swampy dump. So I think killing him in the first place could be actually more merciful. Fates that are worse than deaths will await at least half of your targets if you choose the ‘non-lethal’ way, so at the end of the day you feel like a true monster. 

And in the end, when the game counts all chaos you caused in the city, you expect something more, since the game told you in the very beginning that it would affect the finale. But all you get after you rescue Emily (or let her die) is some stop-motion scenes of Dunwall citizens ranging from dark to happy with Outsider narrating what will happen afterwards. To me it was very unrewarding, it actually killed any mood to replay the game with a different chaos-level. And what was more irritating – I never learned what had happened to Havelock since I just rendered him unconscious like I always did with my targets. Did he go to the prison? Was he executed? Was he pardoned? Did he manage to escape? We'll never know.

[spoilers end here]

All in all, this is truly a great game. I can't put an ‘exceptional’ for everything stated above. But I do recommend it to anyone who appreciate solid stories, interesting characters, an inventive gameplay, and stealth games in general. It's the best game about an assassin with a creed, and it's too bad an appropriate title was taken long before.

Other reviews17

A fantastic stealth game giving you a fun set of tools to play around with
«Blew my mind»
shall we gather for whiskey and cigars
Honestly? Great game. I went into this expecting it to be a dated title with some clunky mechanics that have shown their age after 10 years, but, surprisingly, I had a blast. The story is very predictable, the game is relatively short, and there are some other flaws -- but the gameplay and combat are too fun. It's just so satisfying to stop time and blink across the map taking down your enemies in stealth: you just feel like a ninja/assassin god. The gameplay loop never really got tiring to me, and there are plenty of different ways to approach each level which I would imagine makes replayability very favorable. I also really appreciated that the non-lethal options were always compelling, satisfying, and made sense within the greater, steampunk theme of the Dunwall world that is here. Overall, I definitely recommend this one -- it's not one of the best games I've played, but it's definitely going to be up there with some of my favorite stealth games ever.

Overall: 8/10
Plaisant, rapide, univers riche, scenario pas terrible cependant
good game with great sandbox. The world is well build and beliveble.
Probably the best 1st person stealth game since Thief
«Blew my mind»
What stands out to me the most about Dishonored is how Arkane Studios managed to create an incredible story and world that is alive and complex and then create a masterful stealth game that is jampacked with innovation that the genre has never seen and finally create a challenging gameplay system that slowly ramps up over the course of the game and never makes the player overpowered. 
«That ending!»
«Beaten more than once»
Great game, I love the dystopian vibe the art style is amazing and great characters, I was still finding new stuff even after I had finished it a couple times
Actually pretty good. I didn’t play this game when it originally came out. It has fun creative gameplay and a unique style to it. The lore is cool. The story is meh. The overall experience was good.

Final Score: B+