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The Darkness
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The Darkness (2007)

Category: XBox 360
Publisher: Starbreeze
BBFC: 18

"Demonic First Person Shooter with great visuals, sound, story and style."

Review by
Nick Morris
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Review Date: 04 July 2007 My Rating: out of 5


From the developer of The Chronicles of Riddick comes The Darkness – a First Person Shooter based on the popular Top Cow comic books.

You play Jackie Estacado – a mafia hitman who happens to be celebrating his 21st birthday – but not in style… His latest mob deal has gone wrong and he finds himself fleeing bent cops.

One car crash later and you’re into the game…

As the story starts to pan out, you learn that you have been setup by your Uncle (the head of the family “business”), who suspects that you are responsible for the deal going wrong. Blood is certainly not thicker than water in this family as Uncle Paulie puts out a contract on you – he wants your head on a block.

So Jackie is up against it from the outset - left to fend off the bad guys on his own. Just as you think your luck is out Jackie is introduced to his saviour… The Darkness…

The Darkness is a kind of demon creature that attaches itself (think possession) to Jackies body. Taking the form of two hellish snake arms, The Darkness enables Jackie to get even with his enemies. Through a series of increasingly powerful attributes he can learn, the snake creatures enhance Jackie, giving him various abilities that assist health and attack enemies on his behalf (amongst other things). Throughout the course of the game, these attacks and features will become increasingly powerful and increasingly fun to use.

The plot is action packed, full of twist and surprises. It weaves as sinister and often blood story set in the New York underground and the hellish “Otherworld”. The game runs for a decent amount of time, keeping the player hooked until the end – you will want to see how Jackies story concludes.

Graphically, The Darkness looks fantastic. It runs super smoothly and character animations are great. New York and the Otherworld look suitably sleazy, dirty and hellish respectively.

Sound is also a particularly high point of the game. The character acting is very well presented and adds another layer of stylish sheen to this quite outstanding game.

Overall, The Darkness is a great play that will keep you hooked, entertained and absorbed for the duration of its story. Neat features put this apart from the usual spate of average FPS currently doing the rounds, whilst the stylish presentation ensures that this never becomes a novelty.

Superb stuff.

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