Developer: Tequila Works Publisher: Microsoft Studios Engine: Unreal Platform: Xbox 360, PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One Release Xbox 360 Mode: Single-Player Genre: 2D Sidescroller, Platformer, Survival Apocalypse Mode: Single-player
“Set in an apocalyptic 1986, you play Randall Wayne, a lone survivor searching for his loved ones in the ruins of Seattle.”
by: Mitchell Cole
Deadlight: The Director’s Cut is a follow up reboot to the 2012 Xbox Live release from Tequila Works and Microsoft Studios. Randall Wayne is committed to finding his family no matter the obstacle…and many of those ‘obstacles’ are flesh-eating zombies called ‘Shadows’. In homage to the 1980’s Cold War Era, Deadlight is a game that plays as many larger, fully fleshed out 3D Zombie-pocalypse, only in a sidescroller, 2D fashion.
Another Zombie Game? Wait, In 2D?!
Graphically, Deadlight: The Director’s Cut is a revamped version of its predecessor. Tequila Works took advantage of the upgraded hardware and polished its game as best as they could…and it shows for the most part. The background and city is detailed. The world around Randall teems with death in excellent detail. I wish Randall and the character designs were a bit sharper however. I really enjoyed the cutscene design on the flipside.
The mood is appropriately depressing and cataclysmic with little hope of making it out of Seattle alive. Randall is a loner searching for his wife and daughter. Throughout the game, you play as Randall and try to survive long enough to find clues to where your family may be or have been taken to. Under the hood, Deadlight: The Director’s Cut provides players a modest array of abilities and weapons including the ability to run, jump, and sprint for farther distances. Weapons are pretty base including a slingshot, a pistol, and a shotgun. Does the game require much more than those? Not really. All-in-all, though sparse, the mechanics of the game are all included and work…for the most part.
Deadlight: The Director’s Cut is a solid, good game. That being said, there were a few annoyances or instances that knocked its grade down. The soundtrack to Deadlight is fine but nothing spectacular. It doesn’t add much to the suspense of the game and in some areas, was plain unnoticeable. Tequila Works missed an opportunity here for a heart-pounding soundtrack that draws the game to you but instead implemented for a toned-down soundtrack with less attachment. I understand that this is a post-apocalyptic world and much of that world is quiet, but I do expect more in times of action or revelations.
The controls for Deadlight was another concern. Shooting is a big learning curve, jumping can at times lead to unplanned falls, and subsequent death with a lot of cursing. After some adjustments, the controls are manageable but never truly smooth operating.
Story: B- | Graphics: A | Audio: C+ | Replay: B- | Controls: B
Deadlight: The Director’s Cut is another fine example that an older game is still fun and even more important, relevant in the grand scheme of gaming today. I enjoyed playing Deadlight today since I never had the chance at its release. Although there are some minor grievances, genre-lovers will certainly find the appeal in Deadlight on whatever platform you enjoy gaming on. As always, I recommend a sale purchase if (and when) that comes. Zombi-pocalypse games are a common theme these days and its refreshing to see that a game five years old still stands the time with some polished care from the developers.