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Monday, July 17, 2017

Review: Get Even (PC)

Get Even review

Review by Jim S.

Get Even is an odd game to describe. It's first person and there is shooting but it doesn't really fit the FPS genre. The game is more about the narrative and is unlike anything I have ever played before. Thankfully, it's not just different, it's also really, really <i>good</i>. You play as Cole Black, who must find evidence of what really happened to a teen girl he tries to save, but dies horribly in the game's introduction. To do this you must collect evidence from Cole's memories using a device called the Pandora (as in, that box you just don't want to open... gettit?).

I don't want to say much more about the story its one of the main reasons why this game is so good, but I will say that it's a tight psychological thriller that deals with a number of pretty heavy subjects. As with any story that's predominantly about the mind, the game raises a number of philosophical questions related to thought, memory, and technology's role in all of that, and does so in a way that feels very modern and topical. It's also done in such a way that the game's simply filled with twists and turns that will keep you on edge throughout.

The game plays much like a thriller movie you start off with not really knowing what's going on but as you play you find evidence in each level that helps you piece together the story. Once you start understanding things you won't want to stop playing, because the investigative process itself is just so much fun. One of Cole's main tools is a phone. With this phone you can scan evidence, look at a map that shows enemies and their line of sight, texts, and pictures, you also get a inferred app and flashlight that also acts as a black light to find blood and footprints. It's important to carefully gather evidence, because in Get Even, the decisions you make have consequences, and you don't want to be making uninformed decisions. Every action Cole makes can have a consequence all leading to one of two different outcomes to the game. Both endings are decent, and do a good job of wrapping up the story, while also giving you the feeling that you had agency over it all.

Psychological thriller game review

Another one of Cole's tools is the corner gun. As the name implies you can use it to shoot around corners or even just to observe enemies. The cell phone Cole uses attaches to the gun and lets you scan evidence without having to switch from one thing to another. Now like I said earlier it's not really an FPS as in the game would rather you use stealth than just going in guns blazing. As the game tells you killing will change how others perceive Cole Black, and we do like games that encourage you to think twice before killing at DDNet.

Being a thriller there are some creepy moments in the game but nothing too bad. I'm a pretty big wimp myself and I could handle this game just fine but there are a few moments of uneasiness. If you didn't find all the evidence in a level you can go back to the memory to try to find what you missed. Each level has its own evidence board that shows what you have and how many things you are missing. If you find all the evidence you will receive a code for a locked door in that level and you can unlock more of the story and also get a new gun - yes, the idea of a gun as a reward in a game that discourages shooting confused us a bit too, but then this game is about messing with your head.

Cole can not take a lot of bullets one to three hits will kill him. All that being said, if you want to play the game as an FPS and shoot your way through the game you can and the gunplay is satisfying and with the corner gun, it gives an extra level of uniqueness to the combat. He can also use stealth to take out his enemies, which adds to the strategy, but it would have been nice to be able to use stealth to simply incapacitate the enemies, rather than kill them and add to that kill count.

Get Even on PlayStation 4

Get Even may not be the best looking game on the market but with a story as well written as it has and with an atmospheric sound design it is hard to remember that you're playing an indie game. The score by Olivier Deriviere is so good and always fits the mood the game is trying to set with that and the sound effects all working together. The voice acting is also spot on some of the best for this type of game I have heard.

The mystery solving the tension the edge of your seat storytelling and of course, the sound design all make this one hell of a ride. It's a great feeling when you finally start to figure things out and you can't help but go aha that makes sense now! Like most movies of the thriller genre when you go and replay the game you will likely find things you missed and understand things a lot more but even if you play it only once it does a good job of explaining everything and has a very satisfying ending (regardless of which one you end up getting).

- Jim S. 

Review: Get Even (PC)
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