Mirror’s Edge Catalyst is less a follow-up and more a prequel to 2008’s Mirror’s Edge, and there’s a rather long and overly complex story behind this game which stems back to the time when protaganist Faith Connors was made an orphan a number of years earlier, which DICE have brought to the fore in the 144-page graphic novel, Mirror’s Edge: Exordium.
However, most people will know what Mirror’s Edge is all about and you only need to watch clips and trailers to get a feel of it, and bring you up to speed, if you’re not completely familiar. It’s all about parkour as you jump about from building to building, even swinging across large gaps Spider-Man-style. The more you play the game, the more areas open up, and it’s completely free-roaming this time round, with many side missions to enjoy, such as deliveries where the time to complete them is tighter than a gnat’s chuff.
The training level teaches you how to smack down on the K-Sec guards baddies that stand in your way – such as smashing one of them into the other, or into some scenery – but while you can perfect those techniques, when it comes to the quick of the game, I’m more inclined to press ‘Y’ to put my foot in their face without thinking, and at other times, if I can just evade them, I will do. In fact, the game generally recommends that, for speed, it’s best to avoid them if you can, as you travel from A to B. However, some levels will require you to take them out.
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst – Memento Run (1080p HD, 60fps, DTS5.1) – PC – DVDfeverGames
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst has blisteringly fast graphics, although there are some glitches that need to be ironed out, such as when I was heading back to the Lair to talk to Noah about level 4, “Back in the Game”. First time approaching it, I fell through the floor and couldn’t get out and had to reload last checkpoint. On coming back to that location, the ‘room’ was building its blocks up as I arrived. This is just not good when people are being asked to pay out top whack for a game. On the plus side, I haven’t had this happen too often, and when it’s working fine, the game is a joy to play. A lot of games seem to have problems at launch on PC. I found this with Call Of Duty: Black Ops III (so jiggered that it took so long to fix that by the time I could play it properly, the review would’ve been no longer relevant) and who can forget the debacle a year ago with Batman: Arkham Knight? So besieged with problems that it was withdrawn from sale! Thankfully, we’re not at that stage with this, but I didn’t have to play long to come across the glitches I found, so there’s still a playtesting issue.
If you’re using Fraps to record your games, then this is one of many at launch which will slow down to a crawl. I prefer Fraps, but I had to switch to OBS as that’s less CPU-intensive. Okay, I know Fraps does use the CPU a fair bit, but if last year’s Mad Max can work fine at launch, then surely all games should?
Getting back to the good stuff, and this game has wonderful directional DTS 5.1 sound. However you make your way about the city of Glass, there’s so much going on and it’s a joy to listen to at the same time.
Like all the classic games over the years, as I’m running about, I find myself ‘lifting’ my body as I strive for an almost impossible move – in this case, a big jump. It’s so immersive. Maybe that’s down to the 50″ plasma I’m playing it on? 😉
That said, there are too many controls to try and get to grips with. They should par these down because you just want to run and jump at speed, enjoying the visuals, not trying to get tied up as you run about. One time, I pressed the wrong button and fell down a lift shaft… EEK!
It, therefore, won’t come as a surprise when I tell you that there’s no footage of me completing whole missions because I kept dying numerous times, and you don’t want to see that.
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst – Back in the Game graphics glitches (1080p HD, 60fps, DTS5.1) – PC – DVDfeverGames
If you like a bit of multiplayer, then while there’s no traditional co-op gaming in this, there are Time Trials, so all those deliver runs I mentioned? Your time will be logged and compared against everyone else’s. However, there’s always one idiot who’ll hack the game so that they come top of the list. There’s no way those runs can be completed in a fraction of the time! DICE need to stamp that out. In addition, you can place ‘Beat Location Emitters’ for others to find, akin to geocaching.
It’s a bit ironic that there are things called ‘glitch mods’ in this game, but with the endless talk of things like those and Beatlinks, the jargon tends to go straight over your head after a while. However, that doesn’t matter too much when you just want to run the parkour routes from start to finish.
One thing that did annoy me particularly – the long loading times. Why does it need to take so long to bring back up a level at which you’ve only just failed?
Overall, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst is great fun despite the issues with the gameplay and graphics that need addressing. It’s just a shame they weren’t sorted out before release, but there are many games that have fallen down in that regard as I mentioned earlier.
Should you buy this? If you enjoyed the first one, yes. If not, then you’re probably not reading all of this review anyway.
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst – brightness glitch (1080p HD, 60fps, DTS5.1) – PC – DVDfeverGames
- Publisher: Electronic Arts
- Players: 1, multiplayer: time trials, geocaching
- HDTV options: 720p/1080i/1080p
- Languages: English
- Subtitles: English
Directors: Tom Keegan and Rasmus Højengaard
Writer: Christofer Emgård
Faith Connors: Faye Kingslee
Noah: Jim Pirri
Icarus: Jeff Berg
Dogen: Tim Kang
Rebecca Thane: Debra Wilson
Dr. Aline Maera: Stacy Haiduk
Plastic: Ozioma Akagha
Nomad: Jared Zeus
Beatrix Bloch: Jaimi Barbakoff
Aurore Lupain-Tanner: Jennifer Amore
Guard, Krueger’s Sister, Dispatch & KrugerSec Guard: Misty Lee
Martin Connors/ Additional voices: David W Collins
Erika Connors: Sumalee Montano
Scientist: David Babich
KrugerSec 1 / Commercial Announcer: DC Douglas
Kuma: Max Mittelman
Gabriel Kruger: Michael Rose
Birdman: Tim Russ
Additional cast: Karen David. Jessica Anne Bogart