Monday, April 22, 2013

Reviews: Dishonored: Knife of Dunwall DLC

It truly feels like Daud 'fills' Corvo's boots either as much or more than the man himself.

The first noteworthy thing you notice when you start this DLC, other than that it needed a better way to select the content from the main menu, is Daud's dreary, worn and rusty voice. A voice, truly fitting for the man in this universe, a voice that has seen and done many thing, recounting the events in the beginning of the main game. 

One cant really say what kind of character Corvo was because of the silent protagonist syndrome that lets you fill the role of personality in your on-screen avatar. Daud on the other hand is a unique and exciting character, with a tip of the hat to Michael Madsen, masterly portraying every aspect and emotion of the character without ever seeing a face. 

You can really get a sense of Daud's regret, insecurity and wish for redemption through the dialogue and nuances of mr. Madsen's voice. The second thing you notice is the 'favors' system, new to this DLC, it allows you to buy, well, favors in the next mission, like a safe password or a missplaced bone charm. 

In the mission itself the favors become side missions you can pursue if you so desire, adding longevity to each mission. On our first playthrough we went for zero kills, but can be spotted, and what we noticed is a lack of way to disable someone in a fight if you get caught in the wrong place, though this is not the fault of the DLC and wont subtract anything from our score. 

The final mission of this DLC you truly have to be a master to remain unseen and have enough sleepbolts or choke gas to keep going if you are seen more than once. Wich brings us to our other issue, we completed the last mission by simply running to our objectives while being chased by the guards the entire time. 

The game is simply too easy if you dont mind being spotted, thats a small issue though, easily remedied by the always-at-hand difficulty option in the menu. The new Blink, freezing time whenever you stop moving while holding the button, makes Daud stand out from Corvo as a more Advanced user of The Outsider's granted abilities. 

It allows for more varied use and you get a great feeling when sprinting towards the edge of a roof, jump and freeze time mid flight only to realize two guards saw you and then blink to a ledge you can barely reach with your body now slightly closer, floating mid-air, out of the guards' views. 

Our main concern is that for some this might be a very quick and small DLC at a high price, it all depends on how you playSome will thoroughly explore each area and try to remain as stealthy as possible, especially for a no-kill run, this can last you anywhere from four to six hours. But on the other hand, if you dont care about chaos and just want to kill everything in your path, this should be a quick 45 minutes to an hour. 

But what Dishonored did so well continues in this content with both playstyles being complimented with upgrades and abilities, and you feel like you're urged to go either way. And when the game is over you get a sense to jump back in and play it again in a different way. so if you do play through this in an hour you might end up spending another six despite having finished it.

This is how DLC should be done, it should add without taking anything away from the main game, Daud is a fantastic character, portrayed so well by the writing and Michael Madsen's performance. The new areas to explore are rich and enchances the feeling you get that there are many, many ways to aproach your mission. Some might still find the length to be a little on the short side, but the DLC, like the game, has great replayability and different experiences to be had on each playthrough.

Game score: 5/5

GameViews recommendation score: 100%
We find it really hard to imagine someone who enjoyed the main game to have any regrets paying for this, it will only enrichen the Dishonored universe and give you an excuse to revisit this great game.

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