Beyond: Two Souls Reviews Round-up

Written by Gradly on . Posted in blog, Games, PS3, Reviews, Sony

5.00 avg. rating (96% score) - 1 vote

An Interactive Action Adventure Drama Experience

Beyond: Two Souls – 8/10

Beyond: Two Souls is not a game, but rather an interactive action adventure button mashing drama experience, this is why you will like it or hate it, and this is why the reviews scores are either very high, or very low.

Being not a game puts the player in an awkward situation, you are watching a movie rather than playing a game, this will upset some, but it’s a David Cage’s game after all! There is no hard or difficult challenges, no game over. The main protagonist will never die, and the story will branch depends on your decisions you make through the game with alleged 23 Different endings.

The graphics are a different story, its by far the most stunning good looking PS3 title, mixed with amazing score composed by Hans Zimmer and Lorne Balfe. Some spectacular scenery and locations top those found in the Last of Us and Uncharted series.

The game is linear and it follows the story of Jodie through here life, you will play segments of her life in chronological disorder, this jump in story telling will keep you demanding for more.

There are some control and mechanics issues, but the big issue in my opinion is the limited interaction you can do, there are really big environments, detailed rooms, and locations which you hardly explore making a big part of the game unplayable and wasted.

It’s a shame, because Beyond had the potential to be one of the most interesting games to be made this generation.

+ Stunning Graphics– Limited Exploration
+ Amazing Score– Control / Mechanics issues
+ Decent Story (Although with awkward plot)– The whole CIA missions seem like a filler
 – Meaningless Choices

Rating: 8/10

The game reviews are up, and we’re compiling all the scores here for your reading pleasure.

EDGE – 5/10

What a shame given the extent to which Beyond reflects its developer’s recognition of its past mistakes. This is a far more systemically diverse game than Heavy Rain, and its story is certainly more believably told through Holmes, Dafoe and a fine supporting cast. Yet this is a game almost entirely bereft of tension, one in which failure goes largely unpunished and is almost always inconsequential. There is emotion here, but it’s felt passively, as spectator instead of player. And at the game’s climax, when Quantic Dream falls back on old habits and has you guide Holmes through a supernatural storm by mashing buttons on demand, it’s hard to feel anything at all. The studio’s commendable dream – of a marriage of mechanics and storytelling that takes videogames to new emotional heights – remains out of reach, and the rivers of photorealistic tears aren’t quite enough to make up for it.

Gamespot – 9.0

Beyond: Two Souls is a gripping adventure that doesn’t get lost in its supernatural setup. It’s Jodie’s transformation from scared child to confident adult that’s so mesmerizing, and you grow to care for her as you become invested in her plight. The story’s biggest failing comes in how it handles dramatic sequences. Heavy-handed music often lays the emotion on too thick, which is a shame because the outstanding acting performances are more than able to invest you in the experience. Top-notch acting makes the characters you interact with sound believable, and their faces are expressive enough that you understand their thoughts even when they remain silent. Beyond: Two Souls so easily melds story and mechanics that you become enamored with this young woman and her extraordinary life.

Polygon – 8.0

With Beyond: Two Souls, Quantic Dream has smoothed away nearly all the rough edges in how it presents its stories. The other edge of that sword is that it lays the stories themselves bare to be judged entirely on their own. With so many of the traditional elements of gameplay stripped away, like challenge and exploration, a tremendous amount of weight is put on Beyond’s story to carry the day. While it’s exhilarating to see a team that has worked so hard to perfect a new way of telling stories, I couldn’t help wishing they had a perfect one to tell.

IGN – 6.0

Scene by scene, Beyond: Two Souls is compelling enough, principally thanks to a remarkable performance from Ellen Page. But never before have I felt like such a passive participant in a video game, my choices and actions merely icing on a dense, multi-layered cake. Playing Beyond is a memorable experience, yes, but a good video game it is not; and while the credits were rolling I admit to thinking I would have been happier to sit back and watch a movie version that was eight-and-a-half hours shorter.

Eurogamer – 6/10

But the film stars, the motion capture tech, the black borders, all that expensive striving to look just like a movie, don’t make it any more valid either. Perhaps what David Cage and his dream need are limitations – limitations that Sony’s blank cheque has singularly failed to impose on this sprawling, over-reaching game.

Destructoid – 5/10

For all the complaints that can be leveled at Beyond — and they can be leveled in feckless abundance — the overwhelming problem with it is that it’s just plain boring. Like a sociopath, Beyond: Two Souls knows how to act like it has a heart, while providing nothing of the emotional depth required to connect with an audience. Its characters can smile, and cry, and tell us they’re feeling all of these feelings, but their paper-thin presentation and the frequent narrative dead ends prevent any of their pantomime from becoming too convincing.

And that’s all Beyond: Two Souls is — a pantomime. A childish play at being a meaningful journey, a vapid illusion of passion and poignancy. Nothing but a pantomime. A perishingly dull pantomime.

Digital Chumps – 7.0

Beyond: Two Souls’ ideas are occasionally inept, sometimes brilliant, and often an unstable in-between overloaded with emotional ephemera, predatory clichés, and unconscious behavior. At the same time, Beyond exhibits a willingness to generate an impassioned response from the player, and it sees that missions through to its conclusion. Beyond doesn’t reach its declared level of sophistication, but its confidence and occasional effectiveness render it a fascinating piece of work through any lens.

Next-Gen Gaming Blog – 9/10

Beyond: Two Souls is another stunning example of the types of risks Sony is taking right now. Quantic Dream have taken everything Heavy Rain put on the table and refined it to perfection, creating a deep and engrossing narrative that twists and turns its way to a satisfying conclusion. A truly engaging experience from start to finish, Beyond: Two Souls is a superb title, and yet again, Quantic Dream are at the forefront of pushing the boundaries of interactive entertainment.

IRB Gamer – 4.5/5

This is another one of those games that shows its next-gen readiness way before systems launch. Quantic Dream’s games will look absolutely phenomenal with next-gen graphics as their quality speaks for themselves. And while Beyond has a few quirky changes in controls, the story is superior and very well worth partaking in the experience.

NY Times (No score)

Beyond: Two Souls is a misstep for Mr. Cage and Quantic Dream, but its failings are not the result of the limitations of Mr. Cage’s preferred medium. That it is interesting at all hinges on its interactive nature. It would be one of the worst movies you’ve ever seen, even though Ms. Page and Mr. Dafoe give fine performances.

There’s still something mesmerizing about what Mr. Cage is trying to achieve, even if the gumbo endemic to his work is seasoned with too much awful and not enough wonderful this time around. I can’t help but look forward to playing whatever he makes next.

High-Def Digest – 4.5/5

Despite losing interest in some of Jodie’s experiences and often times wishing for more freedom with both Jodie and Aiden, I was transfixed by the game’s committed narrative. Not only do I want to pry out some of the variations in play that I may have missed thus far, but my fascination with the game as a whole has only grown since finishing my review playthrough. It’s possible that the game’s similarity to adventure games and Cage’s obsession with being similar to films make for an acquired taste, but the level of production lead character depth, and overall product found in ‘Beyond: Two Souls’ are well worth the price of admission.

Official Playstation Magazine UK – 8/10

Beyond’s a huge technical step forward for interactive drama, but seems less resolute than Heavy Rain not to stray back into familiar game territory. Commit to it like its actors do to the eccentric plot, though, and the rewards are gigantic – Holmes is where the heart is. Another essential purchase for interactive-drama disciples featuring a knockout turn by Page, but one that spreads itself thin telling its story through so many genres.

Metro – 4/10

In terms of graphics and actors’ performances there’s almost nothing to touch Beyond, but in terms of an enjoyable game, or even just an interactive story, it barely even approaches B-movie leve

Videogamer – 4/10

It’s a shame, because Beyond is by far one of the most interesting games to be made this generation. And, when it gets it right, it has promise, such as when Jodie is forced to live in a homeless community. There, where I found my desire to keep Aiden under wraps yet also wanted to help my new buddies survive the winter, a tension was created that’s not found elsewhere. I was making an actual choice, and it was being reflected in-game.

The problem is the rest of the experience, what with its mechanical deficiencies, terrible dialogue, obvious twists and ending that betrays pretty much every choice I made. Stories like this can be told in video games. They just need better storytellers.

Rev3Games – 5/5

Tags: , , , , , ,


Gradly is a blogger and technology enthusiast, keeping you all posted about new & cool stuff. You can also remain in contact by Following Him on Twitter, be friend on Facebook and on Google+.

Gradly also happen to be a designer, a photographer, a blogger and an avid reader!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This