Gaming

The Order: 1886 (The Late Review)

As part of getting the PS4 Pro, the PlayStation Store had a winter sale on around the same time. I had never played The Order: 1886 but over the last week I played the game and finished my first play-through.

I have to say that I came away very impressed, and think it is actually a worthy title for the PS4.

Firstly, the setting. There really isn’t enough games set in this time period and the late nineteenth century is just fantastic. The story and characters are also amazing and mix a wide range of lore into the well paced story. It centres around a modern knights of the round table, that has been going for centuries, fighting against threats of England.

The Order 1

Sir Galahad is a great character, and very well voice acted.  Note the black bars indicating the 2:40 to 1 aspect ratio.

As you’ve probably seen in some screenshots or read elsewhere, these threats include the werewolf type variety, but certainly not restricted to the lycans. There are plenty of human enemies as well in the form of a rebellion. Game play is for most part, a third person cover based shooter (like Gears of War), however during quite a few cinematic moments you’ll be relying on various quick time events. For me, who primarily games on the Xbox, they were initially quite tricky (with button X being in a different location). Over time though I did get use to it and the developers seem to give you enough time to respond.

The Order 2

The lighting is amazing and the stealth sections tense.

One thing I really liked is the stealth based sections. You have to time your button press when sneaking up on an enemy, and this requires a bit more skill than just pressing a button while sneaking up on someone. I actually really liked this approach in the stealth sections. The developers, Ready at Dawn, also have additional mini games for killing the power in a building (it is an almost cyberpunk type setting with an alternative timeline) or picking a lock.

I don’t want to say too much about the story for fear of spoilers, but I had to say this again: The story and characters are fantastic. This is a cinematic game (even played in a 2:40 to 1 film ratio) and the graphics are absolutely outstanding. Sound plays a very important part too and is equally as impressive. The voice acting and motion capture is outstanding, with excellent animations.

The Order 3

You will travel the streets of a cyber punk nineteenth century London with other knights.

There are some genuinely tense moments as well. One of the few gripes I have is that the game finishes a little abruptly. Certainly this is not enough to detract from the excellent story, but you feel like it should have gone a bit further before concluding. One of the criticisms at launch was that it was too short and I can understand that point of view (my first play through was around eight hours). Ready at Dawn had certainly set it up for a sequel, and I’m one of the converted who completely agree that Sony should permit one. The game setting, the flesh out world and the amazing characters deserve more.

Despite it receiving mixed critic and user reviews, I think this is a worthy exclusive IP for Sony. If you’ve stayed away from this game because of such reviews I would re-consider, considering the game would be on sale now. The Order: 1886 is a really good game, and I’m glad I’ve finally had a chance to experience it.

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2 replies »

  1. Forgive me, but I wrote something about The Order a few months ago: https://dantalksgames.wordpress.com/2017/01/11/im-desperate-for-a-sequel-to-a-game-i-didnt-enjoy
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    In short, I didn’t love The Order. I found it very limited and frankly, not all that much fun to play. However, the world man, I want so much more from that world, it’s lore and it’s setting. I don’t think we’ll ever get it though, not unless someone at Sony is super invested in those things.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Interesting blog post Dan. I agree completely about the story – I very much want to see more. Perhaps I was nostalgic for some old school gameplay (think Dragon’s Lair) which is why the QTEs didn’t bother me to much. I actually found the gun play pretty good. I know it was an artistic choice (and probably a technical one as well) but I would have preferred just standard 16:9 for the game too, not the 2:40 to 1 ratio we got.

      Like

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