A Way Out
- An atmosphere worthy of a Hollywood movie
I was not aware of the title A Way Out until I saw Josef Fares doing his famous rant during an award ceremony. He was very clear when he said ”Fuck the Oscars” and he spoke about how the gaming industry is superior. Interactive media instead of movies.
Even though the interviewer had to struggle a bit in order to get Josef to speak about the game itself, we did get to see the trailer for the game during that interview. It did not look like something unique based on the trailer. My first impression was Grand Theft Auto like graphic, prison environment and a focus on solving problems.
I have played the game. I am really happy that I did. Josef is coming from the movie industry. Since I am from Sweden I am well aware of that fact. And since I already knew it, I guess that is the reason why I am feeling like I am playing a movie. Have you played the game? Do you agree that the game feels a lot like it was directed as if it was a movie?
Speaking of things connected to Sweden. I am pretty sure that there are things implemented in the game for comedic purposes. For example there is a gas station named ”Roy & Rogers” which most likely hints at a classic Swedish comedic movie.
Perhaps it is just a PlayStation thing. But I was not fully aware of it. As long as you have a friend that owns a copy of this game, you can join him/her for free. To some degree that is possible for other games, I don't know to which extent however.
Never mind. I think it is a nice thing.
How is the gameplay?
The mechanics is fine. It is made pretty simple, probably in order to allow you to focus on the story. Whenever I run away and have to jump over logs etc, I never experienced any issues with the controls or timing of jumps.
One thing that struck me on several occasions is how the checkpoints work. Whenever we failed, we did not have to replay a long session. We were instantly back where we failed. That is a big plus for casual gamers that does not want to replay much.
It might seem like I am writing about a movie and pushing for the fact that the game mechanics is not important. That is not what I am trying to do. I would say that the mechanics is exactly what I expect from a game. I don't think about how to use the controller. It is natural for me to press buttons when I face a challenge. I don't have to think about which button to press in any given situation. Some of the controllers is pretty standard for the PlayStation 4. Aiming, shooting, and driving etc. That helps a lot. But the buttons that is more unique for this game is easy to remember as well. Personally I can be bothered by games where the controllers are difficult. Whenever I play games like that I sort of drift away from following the story since I am focused on how to handle the current task.
I was expecting a lot more difficult tasks where everything would go wrong. When I started to play the game for the first time I decided to stream it. I was anticipating a lot of hilarious failures and friendly criticism. It was not really what I expected. The story was not something that you laugh at. When being immersed into the game, you go for the next objective in order to keep the story developing. And the controls and mechanics were not anything that created a lot of hilarious fails. I played with a friend that is very skilled with videogames and we managed to beat all the obstacles fairly easy. There was no need to yell at each other for failing and with the clever checkpoints, we never had to replay a long sequence.
I would prefer to stream that game when playing online co-op. That way all the conversation would be recorded and not like when I played couch co-op. As a viewer I bet it was pretty confusing when I seemed to be talking to someone who was not there. Since my friend had no active microphone, the viewers did not hear his voice.
Obviously I like the story. I have been writing about how the game is based to be smooth in order for the story to be in focus. I don't know if the developers will be offended by that, but I can imagine that they are happy with people recognizing their success with putting the story first. We have two characters. One is a bit more clever and will come up with clever solutions to problems while the other one is more about violent solutions. This will probably not change the story in any way. But it will give you different options of how to progress in the game. I would say that it gives the game some replay value as well. If you choose differently the second time there will be a lot of new content for you to discover.
I will not spoil anything regarding the story. You will find out more about the characters as the game progresses.
I am yet to finish the game, I expect a few more hours of gameplay. I will wait with the text called review until I have finished the game. I could not wait to share some of my experiences though.