PS3 Reviews: Mirror's Edge Review

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Mirror's Edge Review

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Graphics:

 

9.0

Gameplay:

 

9.0

Sound:

 

9.0

Control:

 

9.0

Replay Value:

 

8.0

Overall Rating:       9.0

 

 

Online Gameplay:

Not Rated

Publisher:

EA

Developer:

Digital Illusions CE

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Action/Adventure

When I first saw Mirror's Edge I thought "oh, another first person game". But then I read the fact sheet and watched the first footage, and then it hit  me, a delayed pause that followed a "wow." That was about all I could think of at the time. I let all of the info sink in and asked myself "are EA and DICE actually making a game where the act of 'free running' is the concept of the game?" Yes! And to top it all off, much of it takes place hundreds of feet above ground. So how does this new take on the first-person genre fair? As you can see, quite well.

EA's all new I.P. deserves all the recognition it can get. Truly a newfound element to explore in both the genre and industry, Mirror's Edge is perhaps one of the coolest projects of the generation thus far. It's the kind of game where you take one of your wildest fantasies and relive them vicariously through a controller. The gameplay is like a mixture of Jackie Chan's finest stunts, with the opening scene of 007 Casino Royale, and all of those free-running clips and commerials you've seen over the years. With all that in mind, there's no wonder why the game has piqued the interest of many gamers all around the world, especially those who are in awe of free-running.

The best way to describe Mirror's Edge is as a first-person run-and-jump game that is more focused on the running aspect, more so than the combat aspect. Mirror's Edge stars Faith, a free-runner who's goal as a messenger is to stop the regulation and control of communications that a totalitarian regime has implemented. Unfortunately for the city, all but one form of communication is being monitored by the regime, good ol' fashion pen-and-paper notes delivered by runners.

And so, here is Faith, who is essentially a messenger with an amazing set of manuevers. Faith is part of a network of runners whose ultimate goal is to put an end to this monitoring, even if it has created an extremely safe and clean place to live in. You take control of Faith via first-person perspective and traverse throughout each environment, utilizing practically any wall or grabable object in order to progress.

Jumping from roof-top to roof-top is one of the first tasks you get to familiarize yourself with, as Faith can pull off some serious leaps of...errr...faith. As you jump, you can time your landings perfectly, allowing you to roll-land upon touching down. You'll be able to jump off walls in succession, slide underneath obstacles, and even perform wall-runs; acrobatic maneuevers much like those you've seen real life runners perform, albeit a bit more exaggerated in the game. 

You'll need decent reflexes to perform some of the manuevers, but nothing that the average gamer doesn't possess. What's superb about the game is that levels, while linear in progression, allow you to take shortcuts by utilizing more advanced manuevers in order to continue. For example, you can either take the easy way and do a few jumps here and there to reach the top, or attempt to pull off four successive wall-jumps to do it even quicker. These alternate quick paths will be scattered all around the stages, so you'll have to keep your eyes peeled open for them.

I noticed that DICE has corrected the collision detection for the game by making grabs a bit more forgiving. Where as in past preview builds you had to be a lot more accurate in your jumps, in the final game this is no longer the case. Faith now has some room for error and instead of falling to her doom for being slightly off-target, she will grab onto the intended object. Certainly a smart move on DICE's part, as I found myself struggling to perfectly align myself and jump precisely towards certain objects while playing the game's earlier builds. Looks like DICE listened.

But of course, there's also the combat, and here's where it all gets even more interesting. Instead of just some featuring generic combat mechanics, Mirror's Edge goes a bit deeper. Melee allows you to go beyond just hitting, but also disarming opponents, or even drop-kicking them! And what's better than drop kicking the s**t out of someone's face? Or hell, what's better than drop kicking an enemy near an edge and watching him fall to his death? It's brilliant! Combat doesn't feel tacked on, and aside from the drop kick, you can also perform a sliding attack to the groin. Moving on, when you're not engaged in fisticuffs, you can pick up a fallen weapon and use it to get you through a few additional enemies that stand in your way. Shooting certainly feels really solid, adding that extra kick to the game, making it even more enjoyable.

But combat isn't something you'll want to concetrate too much on. You're goal is to avoid conflict with the police, and relying on firepower is not a good way to get through the game, because there are no ammo packs to pick-up. Likewise, there are no health packs either, so avoid taking too much damage at one point, and you'll be fine. Your primary concern will be to keep Faith's momentum going, by stringing as many running combos as possible and getting from point-to-point in a hurry.

For the most part, Mirror's Edge features an extremely simplified control scheme that is pretty intuitive. You'll primarily use the L1 and L2 button for most of your on-foot actions, or the R1 and R2 button when it comes down to combat. So Mirror's Egde is a rather simple game, and thus, it also isn't a terribly long game. The entire adventure will last you about six hours when playing normal, and even though that seems a bit short, it's just right for a game like this.

The way I look at Mirror's Edge is as a modern day Sonic the Hedgehog. Think about it: speed, precision, and platforming are the main aspects of both games. And weirdly enough, Mirror's Edge also has that same replayability that made the Genesis Sonic games so great and always a pleasure to come back to time and time again. If you finish the game, there is also a Time Attack mode you can visit, allowing you to re-play sections of the game in an attempt to set the fastest run time through them. It may seem like a barely novel idea, but it's strangely addictive, much like the rest of the game.

Now, what I really applaud DICE for doing is creating an image that is virtually guaranteed to prevent motion-sickness. They've spent time researching the causes of motion-sickness in videogames and have made two simple design choices to prevent it: a focal point in the center of the screen, and a super-wide perspective. I must admit, as someone who cannot stomach playing a number of FPS games, I had not one problem with Mirror's Edge. Bravo, DICE...you've given me more reason to spend more time with the game.

As you've seen by now, Mirror's Edge looks terrific. With an incredible draw-in distance that renders a whole plethora of buildings all around you without any signs of pop-up, this game engine runs along at a splendid pace, capable of rendering 30 non-stop frames with hardly any signs of slowing down. The 720p image brings to you a crystal clear display free of jaggies, background shimmering, and even screen-tearing. The wide-screen angle will really impress those with Elephant-like TVs, and they should also appreciate the amazing scenery and blinding lighting.

Perhaps my only complaint about the visuals is that the lighting can be a bit too overpowering in cases, and even if you tone down the settings on your TV, it's still not quite natural looking. An in-game option to tone down the sun's heavenly rain of light would've been nice. Texture detail is complimented well by the lighting, thankfully, and Mirror's Edge sports some pretty decent texture work all throughout. And even though the game is first-person, you'll still see your arms and legs all throughout the game. Finally, the game's story is unraveled through the use of stylistically animated and real-time cut-scenes, as opposed to just relying on CG. 

As far as audio, the game is largely driven by its voice acting, which is done fairly well. Throughout much of your journey, you'll be radioed in on what to expect up ahead as far as trouble. Enemies will shout at you, and bullets will surround you as you make your mad dash away from them. As mentioned earlier, two kinds of cut-scenes unravel the story, and obviously, most of the voice acting is done here. You'll also hear a variety of sound effects, such as the honking of cars, the wind breeze, etc. All in all, nothing to really complain about.

Mirror's Edge is yet another must-own game of the season. It's unlike any other first person adventure out there, and that alone earns your attention. It's addictive gameplay will have you coming back to it long after you've beaten it, even if the full quest only last six hours, thanks to a surprisingly fun Time Attack mode. It's superb visuals and presentation really make all the more engaging, as do the intuitive controls. Mirror's Edge is definitely a worthwhile treat.

11/11/2008 Arnold Katayev

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Comments (37 posts)

Reccaman18
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 5:44:46 PM
Reply

Damn, the game is that good huh? I loved the demo. Kinda hard and a little annoying at times, but it was pretty sweet in the end. Best part of the game: Asian protagonist! lol

Last edited by Reccaman18 on 11/11/2008 5:45:40 PM

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giant123
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 6:23:23 PM
Reply

i loved the demo...
another game to buy....
i love the idea behind this game!
it actually makes ur heart beat fast when you jump from building to building

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MirrorSoul
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 6:24:03 PM
Reply

I didnt like the demo. The game seemed dry..I guess ill rent it to get a better look

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Daedusian
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 6:29:37 PM
Reply

I hope the game doesn't leave me wanting more kinda like what the demo did to me. In ME2, they should do some kind of randomization of levels so each experience is different. By the time 6 hours are over, I'll probably start crying =( lol.

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Duff
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 6:39:25 PM
Reply

I still have to download this demo and try it out, I've been hearing good things about it and now that i've seen a review then i will just get it.

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MetalHead09
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 6:40:22 PM
Reply

lol yea she is a babe. i cant wait to get this game, sounds amazeing.

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SarahPalinMILF
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 6:53:45 PM
Reply

IGN gave it a really low score...

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 7:26:56 PM
Reply

Yeah, there seems to be a bizarre discrepancy in looking at the scores...we gave it a 9, VideoGamer gave it a 9, CVG gave it a 9, and 1Up gave it a really high A/A+.

But IGN only gave it a 7.4 and GameSpot gave it a 7.0. The critical average is closer to our analysis, but you don't usually find this kind of gap. Then again, I've long since distrusted both GS and IGN, so whatever. LOL

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Scarecrow
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 8:24:30 PM

+1
Ever since they gave Heavenly Sword a 7 or 8 I knew for sure sites like IGN and Gamespot were garbage.

But not only that, you then also have Gamespot getting paid to give good reviews lol.

Still can't believe that site's alive even after that...

Anyway good review, personally I don't like this game at all. But hey it seems like it is a good game overall.

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tlpn99
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 8:19:36 PM
Reply

I wont be buying this, good game, good idea, just made me feel sick playing the demo cos of the motion sickness. Sounds strange I know lol.

Oh yeah Ben slightly off topic sorry, but im buzzing slightly (plus I didnt know where to add it) as I have just clocked Dead Space, man thats one cool game. Couple of real huge end of level bosses in it :)

Last edited by tlpn99 on 11/11/2008 8:20:48 PM

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Fabi
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 8:29:45 PM
Reply

I really wanted to buy this game, but I just can't make myself pay $60+ for a 6 hour game.

While I understand that 6 hours is perfect for the type of game it is, it's just not worth $10 an hour. I'm not the type of person to go back and play a game, I don't have enough time.

Hope it does good though.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 9:46:59 PM

Any chance we can blame the 6 hours on the tiny peni... I mean tiny disc size for 360?

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 11/11/2008 9:48:41 PM

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FLYING_APE
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 2:27:59 AM

@worldendswithme all you go on about is the xbox 360 disc size, rrod blah blah crap.lets talk about the game. Good review good game but i'm going to buy it. I'll get it cheap on ebay next year some time.
BTW Ben you always have a good moan at me for fanboy comments just look at this guy. The disc size has nohing to do with it.

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Advent Child
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 3:12:24 AM

Your right the disc size probably has nothing to do with it, but if you read his post you will notice it is in the form of a question.

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Riku994
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 8:33:04 PM
Reply

Man, I can't wait for christmas! I'm getting this game and I love playing the demo, I did it twice this morning XD for anyone who asks how I have the patience for this, you can skip the tutorial.

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Qubex
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 9:07:40 PM
Reply

I found the game to be "ok"; not my type of game though, so I will give it a miss. Going out soon to purchase CODV, looking forward this, hours of fun I am sure...

Slightly off topic, but I am sure of interest to many of you out there.

I continue to clock up hours on Killzone2. It is an utterly brilliant game, in every respect. The more I see what they have done with the graphics, the atmosphere and the online, the more I feel this to be a huge success.

Damn, I have seen what the PS3 can really do now...

Q!

"I aM hOMe"


Last edited by Qubex on 11/11/2008 9:08:35 PM

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Saber1989
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 9:34:17 PM
Reply

I don't like this game at all! Tried it at a game festival and tried the demo, its annoying to me. But, it may appeal to others, and I'll say this it completely new from anything I seen before. But, still a miss with me especially since CoD 5 came out and there are really great games for me to still play (R2, Dead Space, LBP, GH World Tour) to waste time with Mirror Edge. Anyways that how I feel.

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Schmitty
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 9:35:05 PM
Reply

ill rent it

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 9:51:13 PM
Reply

I guess the mixed reviews do do well to reflect the mixed tastes over this one, to be honest with you I would have enjoyed it more if it was third person. Kinda like a more serious, running instead of skating version of Jet Set Radio ya know?

Hmm, I just don't see this becoming the trilogy they were talking about.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 11/11/2008 9:57:21 PM

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Daedusian
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 11:24:15 PM

OMG Jet Set Radio!! Loved that game! Good 'ol dreamcast days...

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isaya85
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 10:15:55 PM
Reply

This is off subject but I just saw 10 min ago the tv ads for Mirrors Edge and Need for Speed undercover with the PS3 logo at the end I was verry happy to finally see my system of choice at the end of an EA ad!!!!

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Sir Shak
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 @ 11:12:39 PM
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1up gave resistance 2 a lower score than this

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Vivi_Gamer
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 1:58:30 AM
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I'going to wait for this, i wasnt to keen on the demo, ive already got 4 games on the go and 2 weeks until resistance 2 so ill be busy.

what annoys me about first person games is that the perspective is all wrong, its seems as the camera is leveled around the chest area of the character, the eyes are on the head, which is at the top of the body, look down, do you see your body, wh is it in fist person games you never see the body when you look down!

Last edited by Vivi_Gamer on 11/12/2008 2:00:50 AM

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Advent Child
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 3:14:15 AM

In this game you do look down and see your body

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TEG3SH
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 3:56:56 AM
Reply

PLZ CAN SOMEONE ANSWER ME...
DOES IT HAVE MP other than timetrial i mean?????????

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DIsmael85
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 9:21:29 AM

No, why would it have multiplayer?

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Vivi_Gamer
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 3:09:24 PM

@ Advent Child, legs does not count as body, you should see her chest, and im not being perverted!

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King James
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 10:41:33 AM
Reply

6 hrs?! man, that makes me sad. If there's incentive to play though it more than once like Uncharted, then I'll buy it. If not, I'll rent it.

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Fabi
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 1:50:12 PM
Reply

@flying ape - I'm a little late on this one, but I agree, people posting "fanboy" comments pro Sony should be treated the same way.

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TEG3SH
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 @ 4:32:31 PM
Reply

@ dismael85 why wouldn't it??????
i was just asking BTW so if doesn't include MP i would only give it a rent not a purchase....

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murdaface
Thursday, November 13, 2008 @ 1:19:02 PM
Reply

free running?
why would people want to play a game where all they do is run?

I dont know, i guess i cant knock it til i try it.

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arwong
Friday, November 14, 2008 @ 2:13:10 AM
Reply

They should rename this game Ground Hog Day.
Because you'll be repeating the same thing over and over..... get used to falling from great heights..... over and over....

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Alienange
Saturday, November 15, 2008 @ 10:34:40 AM
Reply

You scored this a 9 ??? 9!!?? Oh I don't think so. arwong here has it down pat. Run, Jump, Fall. This game is ridiculous. And now I read it's only 6 hours long? A 9 ?? Higher than COD5? Alright. You're allowed scoring however you want. But this time I wholeheartedly dissagree.

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Banky A
Saturday, November 15, 2008 @ 7:53:12 PM

Yeah LOL. I got COD: WW and I think it got reviewed just a tad harshly in some sites.

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Arvis
Monday, November 17, 2008 @ 2:11:03 PM

Uh... I don't know. I played it and it was definitely a 9's worth of fun. Very entertaining and very different. I wouldn't BUY the game, but it is a rental with VERY little downside.

-Arvis

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Zorigo
Tuesday, December 23, 2008 @ 11:52:43 AM
Reply

I just got this game, and am addicted. it is amazing. what you said is al true. kudos to dice. they are gr8. rock on 09

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helgso
Sunday, January 11, 2009 @ 10:41:16 AM
Reply

HOLY ****!!!!!!!

Best game I've ever played!! I do recommend playing the demo first so you can see if it's your taste or not. But I can tell you, the full game has more fun levels. GREAT GAME

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