I Am Alive critical reaction = 2012 version of Deadly Premonitions?
I Am Alive was always going to go one way or the other in my opinion but what I did not expect was the rollercoaster of review scores that launched this morning. Things seemed to have leveled out to about where I thought it might end up (Metacritic has it at around 75) but its always interesting when a game can recieve a 10 from one publication and a 4.5 from another. So like the mystery of Deadly Premonition before it, it is something that needs investigating.
The 4.5 comes from the media juggernaut that is IGN with Greg Miller describing the downloadable title as having “… great ideas and poor execution. It ends up being a flat, frustrating game that isnt worth your time or money”.
I must say to having not played the game yet, reading Greg’s review and watching the video review made me reconsider my previous excitement for the title. Job well done Greg I will not be purchasing… wait a minute.
Now reading the Gamesradar review and Mr Charlie Barrett gives the game an average 6/10 and the review itself seems in writing to be leaning towards a 7 or a 10 with Charlie declaring I Am Alive to be an “… intense and worthwhile one (experience)”, he mentions this is so if you are particualarly tired of other “shooter’s and climb formulas…”
So now a 6/10 and I am feeling a little better about the prospect of spending my 1200 gamerpoints – but the review and the score throw me, so its off to all the other publications and thus I find.
Game Informer: 8.5/10 – “Among the best interactive survival experiences”
Destructioid – 8.5/10 – “As a downloadable title I Am Alive is a remarkable accomplishment… delivering a unique experience geared towards an adult audience while simultaneously being a fun game to play…”
Ugo – 4.2/10 – “I am Alive is a strong game premise that really fails to launch”
The Gaurdian – 10/10 – “I Am Alive uses is post apocolyptic environment far more effectively than most other games that share its nightmarish vision of the future.”
No offense to the writer at “The Gaurdian” but upon reading the review I would say that 10 is a massive outlier and probably not to be used at the go to review (the same day Mass Effect 3 gets a 9.5 from most places, a 10 this is I think not). The remainder of the 18 in total reviews sit in the safe sevens and early 8’s which is in line with what I would of expected.
I am not saying that Greg Miller didnt have a reason to be disgusted with the game and give it a 4.5, nor that the writer from the Gaurdian shouldnt consider it to be a masterpiece, it is the extreme scores on either end of the spectrum that i am getting at here. All reviews are quite simply personal opinion, however the numbers dont often lie and review scores level out and remain primarily the same across the board when looking at a particular criteria. It is the extremes going by the same criteria that boggle my mind.
My personal take on the game so far is that it is difficult, it will challenge you and it does offer something that I personally have been seeking for a long while now. An actual adult gaming experience and atmosphere that doesnt play up to the more childish side of gaming.
Have I played a second of the game yet? no I have not… but I still intend to because by the time I got from the start to the end of my review round up this morning I was primarily playing the part of these two…
This is by no means an attack on any of the reviews or the people reviewing them. If you look back over this blog that could be misconstrewed because it would seem I kept up on my I Am Alive news over the time of its development. But its more a retrospective that we may very well take reviews to heart from time to time, and we may miss out on something because of them. I think anything with as broad a range of scores as I Am Alive seems to have recieved it is worth the 1200 gamer points and hope that you do to.I will update this tomorrow with my feelings towards the game after a few hours of concentrated playthrough.