Head Games: Darksiders

I've chosen to include the video review above (courtesy of GameSpot) because it is perhaps the fairest and most objective game review for Darksiders that I've found thus far, though admittingly, I must confess that I have been disappointed by the overall experience. Looking back I can remember the first game associated with Darksider's Creative Director (Joe Madureira) entitled Gekido: Urban Fighters (see left) and the disappointment that laid therein as well. Granted, Madureira had little more to do with that game than provide some of the cover and ad artwork, but at the age of early adulthood there exists a certain expectation that ads instill in you which this one couldn't keep. Madureira has since moved on to do much more recognized work on both advertising and video games, but I can't help but escape that certain sense of unfulfillment with his newest effort, Darksiders.

Don't get me wrong, I love the art and for the most part the production values are top notch, but like many other reviewers that just something unmentioned vacancy that exists which prevents Darksiders from truly being a great gaming experience. Some of these issues include:
  1. Being consistently plagued by motion sickness (presumably due to the screen tearing in the XBOX 360 version)
  2. Inconsistent pacing (at least in the beginning of the game)
  3. Overly complex controls (requiring precise targeting which increases difficulty and slows down gameplay)
Unfortunately these flaws, which dramatically decrease playability and constantly take me out of the experience, prevent Darksiders from becoming what would otherwise be a fun and well-designed Castlevania-esque action-adventure game. Definitely a rental.

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