Beyond Two Souls | PS3

Tuesday 24 October 2017

Developer: Quantic Dream
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Game: Beyond: Two Souls
PS3 Review

*This post was written prior to Elliot Page coming out as transgender, please bear that in mind*

I decided to start playing my PS3 a bit more as it doesn't get as much love as the PS4 anymore and James recently got me Beyond Two Souls for PS3. I've watched streams of it a few times now so I wanted to give it a go for myself, I'm aware it's on PS4 now along with Heavy Rain but I liked the idea of getting it for PS3 first so I could eventually compare it to the PS4 quality. I've said it before interactive games aren't really my jam but the ones like Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead are the kind I don't like as they are very restricting whereas Beyond Two Souls lets me explore a lot more. I always made sure that when I watched streams I didn't get too far to the end as I wanted to experience that for myself one day and I'm really glad that I did. Beyond Two Souls is about a young girl named Jodie Holmes, she has a gift which scientists are helping her explore to find out how she can control it without anyone getting hurt, the game takes place over a number of years from when Jodie is a little girl until early adulthood. We come to learn that Jodie's gift is actually an entity that attached itself to Jodie ever since she was born, she has named this entity Aiden and he can perform tasks for her in order to help her throughout the game, at first I found the controls a little annoying to control but over time I got used to controlling Aiden. Ellen Page plays Jodie, she played her so well and gave all the right emotions to play with my heartstrings, they even made her character look very lifelike, as well as Ellen being in it Willem Dafoe is also a main character, he is a scientist named Nathan who has taken care Jodie since she was 8 years of age.

Jodie is taken to a facility as her powers start to get too much for her parents, the scientists there give her a room and watch her over a period of 15 years in order to learn how Aiden and Jodie work together. I felt terrible that her parents could give up with her so easily, once I actually learnt the truth about them it kind of made sense but we will get to that further in. Jodie is such a sweet little girl who wants a good life, at times it feels like she just wants to escape from Aiden and live a normal life but Jodie wouldn't be who she was without him that's for sure. The game isn't in order of her age, you get to see different chapters of her life in random order, but it helps tie the whole game together at the end as we find out why she does certain things and how it ended up leading to it. She is trapped in a place where no choices she makes are hers up until she finds out that the CIA has made her kill an innocent man with the help of Aiden and she runs away and ends up living on the streets. This is where the real Jodie comes out and we see what a caring loving person she actually is whilst trying to help her friends she has made on the street.

At the age of 8 Jodie's parents decided to take her to the facility I spoke mentioned, further along in the game we find out her so-called parents are given Jodie and told that if any weird things start happening to bring her back to them which is exactly what they did at this part of the game just as her parents are about to leave I decided to not let Aiden hurt her father who was so horrid to Jodie, he chose to not be understanding and made it clear that he didn't like Jodie one bit. Throughout her time there Cole and Nathan (both scientists) are given the task to watch over her and help her control the entity attached to her, eventually, the CIA decided it's time for her to start training with them and take her away from Nathan and Cole which was heartbreaking. She was around 18 at this point, the training was hard and the same kind of training someone joining the army would undertake, she has no choice but to follow her orders and do as she was told but Aiden helped her out a lot with her training, helping her sneak past people and silently take them out in order to get to her objective. A number of things happen leading up to Jodie being back in the grasp of the CIA after running away and becoming homeless, she discovers that the woman she finds out that was really her mum was put in some kind of coma to stop her from moving, speaking or being able to get away and that they were going to do the same to Jodie. Jodie's whole life has been controlled by others, she has never been able to be herself or live a free and happy life and at times resents Aiden, people only want her for her abilities rather than who she is, she goes through so much heartbreak and death and at the end of the day just wants to be happy.

Aiden's point of view

The game has a few scary elements which left me panicking and having to pause the game, there are these other entities that the scientists have accidentally let through a portal they opened to the other side, they start taking over another facility and Jodie is the only one who can shut down the portal, I ended up failing a few times on that bit and would have liked to of tried it on two player so someone else could control Aiden whilst I control Jodie, I like that it has this option as it means you can have a whole new experience with someone else. When you play as Aiden the camera changes and becomes a lot darker, you're able to fly up and down, kill people which I kinda like doing and even heal others, Aiden is pretty amazing and terrifying all at once. Now this game is based on the choices you make, so whatever choice you make will reflect on what ending you get, I tried my very best to try and get a good ending and have yet to play through it again to get the other endings, you can go back and play through chapters in order to try and get the trophies which is what I've been trying to do but I'm only on 37% right now.

I think what makes this game great for me was the graphics and the fact it's more like a movie, it's not everyone's cup of tea but being able to play a game that makes you feel part of the game, I was so invested in it that I flew through the game pretty quickly. The game doesn't feel awkward as the graphics flow nicely and executed so well, I think the game looks very realistic and the emotions portrayed brought the faces of each character to life, you can see just from Jodie's face how scared or anxious she really is and it makes you prefer for what is to come next. Quantic Dream games are some of my favourites, I think I would have loved to see a sequel to Beyond Two Souls but the game tells us all we need to know about Jodie and Aiden as it is so I don't know how much more they could add to her story, but at the end of the game it does show the world going to shit and Jodie facing it head on so a sequel could have worked well if they built on that story and if they hadn't added the ending where Jodie dies. I give this game:

Elle May


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