(IMAGE APPEARS COURTESY OF IGN)
The Order 1886 is a game in hot contention right now. It seems to be under fire from all directions with some of gaming’s biggest outlets panning the Order as nothing more than a graphical showcase. This is sorely misinformed. I am forced to wonder if I played the same game that they did.
Having just completed the games campaign as I am writing this. My first thought is I cannot wait for a sequel. My impressions of the game start with how fresh I found the setting. It was just really nice to escape into a world that felt new and different. From the very outset of The Order 1886, a very robust and intriguing mythology is developed.
First off. Yes the graphics are gorgeous, but their was so much more to the game than just a visual feast. The other criticism made about The Order 1886 is that it is too short. Admittedly it took me about 9 hours to complete on normal difficulty but for perspective the first Uncharted game was shorter than that by almost 2 hrs and that game started one of the biggest franchises in gaming right now.
You play as Sir Galahad a veteran of The Order although very noble he tends to follow his own moral compass. His team including himself is made of four unique characters with distinctive personalities and interesting backgrounds. Sir Perceval serves as the squad leader, delving out wisdom he and Sir Galahad are old friends and Galahad does not take Perceval’s advice lightly. Lady Igraine or Izzy as she is referred to in the game has a big ego and is often the first to kick in a door. Rounding out the team is the passionate Marquis de Lafayette a freedom fighter who fought in both the American and French Revolutions. Together this team serves as a sort of special forces where encounters with the occult and supernatural seem like a normal occurrence.
The story is fascinating, ripe with the possibilities historical fiction allows for in the Whitechapel district of the 1880’s. For instance Jack the Ripper’s infamous murder spree is in full swing, Nikola Tesla not only makes all of your tools and weapons he is also one of your best friends and confidant’s, and you occasionally fight werewolves. The combat is really satisfying. Every single weapon fires differently and has a different feel to it. Specifically the weapons that Tesla has created are fun and imaginative. For instance one weapon is basically a giant electric arc generator and another shoots clouds of flammable gas that you can engulf multiple enemies in before launching the weapons secondary incendiary function taking down multiple enemies in a giant fireball. The cover system works very well too. Using the circle button to cover and the X button to break cover makes it harder for you to stick to cover by accident.
The Order 1886 is truly an immersive experience. It is obvious a ridiculous amount of effort went into crafting this game. Every level down to the tiniest detail looks incredible. The characters are likable and engaging. Combined with the story The Order 1886 is successful in creating a fresh experience for the gaming community. Most importantly the game is just fun to play. I found it hard to put down.
As for all the bad reviews and negative press this game has garnered over the last few days I just find it bewildering. I have noticed this mindset more and more in reviews over the last few years. Some outlets have made a conscious effort to stay away from it and fight hard to be unbiased. However if you read between the lines of a bad review sometimes you will notice it. People will sometimes give a game a bad review, not because the game is actually that bad but because its not the game they wanted. I think that this is exactly what has happened with The Order 1886. The game has been highly publicized since it was announced and their was a lot of hype for this game being one of the first big next-gen console exclusives and it just simply wasn’t the kind of game the critics wanted. By no means however does that make this a bad game.
Obviously this is just my speculation. The only other reasoning I can validate as to why The Order 1886 got such a bad review is because of some background politics between the publisher and the big name outlets because quite honestly I thought the game was brilliant. I thought the story was really interesting and I found the conclusion really satisfying. My hope is that word of mouth will triumph over these superficial reviews because this game is worth playing and I really hope they make a sequel or at least some big DLC content because I don’t want to stop exploring this world.
The Order 1886 is a PS4 exclusive and is rated M for mature.