Black Mirror | PS4 Review.

Saturday 6 February 2021

Publisher: NA: The Adventure Company | CZE: Future Games | UK: GMX Media
Developer: Feature Games
PS4 Review

I had no idea a game called Black Mirror even existed until James got the game for christmas and I later found out it was an rebooted version of the 2008 Black Mirror game 3 part series. I was unsure about whether or not I would enjoy and looked at some gameplay videos to get as feel of it, the only issue I could see wrong with the game at first were the long black loading screens which happened when you went into any room within the game. Black Mirror came out in 2017, i'm surprised it's taken me this long to getting it or even know about it. It focuses on the main protagonist David Gordon who makes a trip to his father's mansion in Scotland, before all this takes place your thrown into the action running to a destination unknown to you, you come across the ghost of a woman and later find your way to some standing stones much like the ones in Outlander, he begins to perform a ritual and then sets himself on fire and suddenly your thrown forward in time to play as David.

It's clear from the heavy atmosphere in the house and those who work/live there that a lot has gone on and David plans to get to the bottom of it, but be warned the long loading times with black screens can be enough to put people off wanting to play. However for me the story gripped me and I wanted to give it a fair chance even if it meant looking at a black screen waiting for it to load every time I went into a different room, besides that the house can be an interesting place to explore and I found myself finding things before I was probably meant to! I came across some puzzles that were simplistic then others and admittedly had to look at a guide to help me as I got lost.

I would rather look it up instead of stress over what to do next and using guides isn't cheating! Talking to people in the mansion is an obvious thing to do and I found myself going back and forth between people making sure that I had gathered up any other information they had to give just to cover myself. I had a glitch that stopped me progressing any further half way through the game, I restarted and managed to get past it luckily and because I knew where to go before encountering it I reach the point where I restarted faster then I thought.

I often wondered if the game would continue to feel clunky or it was just because I was exploring, this clunkiness stayed and felt awkward at times on my ps4 controller, I would be standing directly in front of an object I wanted to interact with but any slight movement and that option was gone so I would have to position David a certain way. I felt accomplished after getting through any puzzles or working out where to go when I wasn't using the guide, the quest log was helpful but to an extent and come off as very vague which I feel was done to make it more mysterious as it's a mystery game after all. This is another thing I think will deter people from wanting to play and scratching their heads because the story doesn't flow the way they thought it would, I found the residents to be more interesting than the storyline if I'm honest, I was very fond of the gardener.

David is full of suspicion, he needs answers and everyone I meet seems to be shady to me, they tend to not give much away at some points but then suddenly will spill the beans on another instant even when David doesn't push for answers nor does he come across as aggressive, although he is the main character he seems a little bland at times, I would have liked to of seen what his childhood was like and who actually contacted him to tell him about his father, the game jumps right into things with no explanations which makes it feel a little unfinished. You could say that the dialogue options are very similar to Life is Strange except without the repercussions when it comes to the choice of dialogue, I came to the conclusion towards the end that this would be an easy one time play through game because there wasn't any other ending you could end up with until I missed out on one trophy which I could access again via chapter select which takes away the frustration of them loading screens.

Spending a good amount of time looking at everything I could possible find and clicking on parts of my surroundings incase something is hidden was how I spent most of the game, I was under the impression that I would maybe be able to go further than the grounds in the game and speaking to the residents unfortunately this wasn't the case. It would have been nice for Daniel to get a different perspective of the house from outsiders and to see if the rest of the town was as depressing as the house. It all came across as too basic even for a point-and-click game, however there was a skeleton key puzzle of the house that Daniel would solve over slowly throughout the game, I like the idea of using a mini version of the house to unlock more secrets.

The music caused some suspense, it never overpowered the dialogue which is an upside and the feeling of something big accuring never goes away. It's pretty obvious that unearthing secrets will cause some kind of suspense, David's visions make them all the more interesting as he can see in to the past, it helps you build up a picture of how series this whole situation is making the story the main thing that held the game together for me if i'm honest, would I recommend Black Mirror? Probably to those who want to get an easy platinum trophy yeah but as a whole no I wouldn't.


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