By all accounts and standards of the current generation, Deadly Premonition is a mediocre game at best. However, if you can trudge through the mud and get to the cliff of the game, you’ll probably be glad you did. Deadly Premonition comes from the creative mind of Hidetaka Suehiro (aka Swery). His vision showed that games can be so much more than high pixels and frame rates. Trust me this time; If you play, you will see my point. However, overcome these notions and you will get a unique gaming experience. The town of Greenvale serves as the main stage; and offers a very Twin Peaks aura feel. During his research, as the main protagonist Francis York Morgan; just call it York, because that’s what everyone does, you’ll be in charge of investigating a series of gruesome murders. Legend has it that the murders are being committed by none other than the city legend Raincoat Killer.
During your stay at Greenvale, you will need to question a variety of suspects; all very colorful in their own unique way. You can participate in a variety of side quests, such as finding an old memorabilia for the owner of the city hotel. You can even go fishing; although this is a very annoying process. During his investigations, York will often stray from “white” (Premonition’s version of a somewhat normal world); and being transferred to a “red” or evil existence. Here, the game becomes a kind of Silent Hill. Monstrosities will come to you in various forms for you to dispose of properly. An annoying aspect of this world’s version is that every creature you kill says the same thing … “I don’t want to die.” First time, not so bad. After 100 or so, it gets downright annoying.
As you play, you will be asked to complete some puzzle activities; neither of which is very difficult, but it does break things up a bit. One of the most intriguing puzzles requires you to get the correct umbrellas from various rooms and place them on figurines. If your puzzle-solving skills are not correct, you will hear York say more than once, “We are still missing a vital piece of the puzzle.” This also ages. However, apart from the repeated bits of various dialogues; the rest of the script is what gives this game its merit. The story is really interesting and will probably keep you guessing until the end.
On the game front, there have apparently been some major improvements since the original X-Box launch. While I never played the original, common complaints seemed to flow around the gun game and navigation. During my time with the PS3 version, the fighting sequences were pretty standard for most third-person shooter games. It wasn’t great (like not being able to move while aiming); but I can only assume that it is a huge improvement over the original. Travel sequences can be cumbersome. There is no way to set benchmarks during gameplay, so you have to rely on a minimap on the left side of the screen. It works, but it is very outdated. Also, if you don’t pick up a radio (during an early side mission), Greenvale may require some significant driving distances that get tedious.
That said, even with its annoyances and below-average graphics, I’m still glad I played The Director’s Cut. The script and much of the dialogue are the most important aspects of the game. See through your obvious weaknesses, and you’ll be glad you spent time in Greenvale, trying to solve the Raincoat murders!
Concept – 10
Graphics – 6
Sound – 7
Gameplay – 7
Entertainment – 8
Average rating: 7.6