Deconstructing the Game: Darksiders

Some jumps seem impossible to pull off and you take a literal leap of faith, a double jump and utilizing the ability to float to barely reach the other side. When you reach the ledge you were jumping to the end result still doesn’t make much sense because War actually falls below the ledge before the “grab the ledge” animation kicks in always leading me to believe that I’m plunging to my doom. Thankfully the hit detection is not messed up here when it comes to grabbing ledges, just the visual representation.

Despite those above misgivings, the platforming isn’t terrible, just something that is a bit of an acquired taste. Once you get the hang of the scheme in place it still never feels perfect and it can still get in the way but it’s very functional in the end and even downright exhilarating at times. It’s much better than the alternative, on rails platforming or having none at all.

Fluid Karma: There is a lack of fluidity to some of the movement transitions that War has that can cause some awkward control moments for the player. When climbing on ropes, walls or ceilings, the transition between between being on or off tends to not be as smooth as it could be. I often times would be going in the wrong direction or not transitioning at all because of a strange switch in camera and/or delayed reaction of the animation. There were other instances where a similar problem would arise but they were fairly minor and I can’t remember any other specifics.

Much like the jumping problems, these little hiccups in control because of camera or animation issues just pull the player out of the experience, if even for a moment, and can be detrimental when those moments add up.

Sometimes things just don’t work: During my play through I had a few moments where mechanics just wouldn’t click the way they were supposed to. An example I remember clearly was when I had to push a block into a portal and I thought it wasn’t the correct solution to the room’s puzzle because the mechanic just didn’t register right the first time. I wandered around and had to ask a friend, who told me that something must have just gone wrong. Lo and behold, I tried it again and the portal worked as it should.

This cost me an hour of trying to be clever and figuring out solutions that were not at all feasible since the room was hard wired with only one solution, that just would not trigger. This was toward the end of the game, and another person might have given up too quickly leaving the game unfinished because of a bug.

Running at walls: This is another weird thing that that ripped me out of my experience once or twice, an enemy running into the geometry of the hub world for no good reason. He just seemed stuck in place and it was very noticeable. This was another regrettable bug that hindered my experience on more than one occasion. I mean sure, I got the kill easily, but at the same time the immersion factor was compromised.