∟ It’s a tossup between DICE’s Mirror’s Edge and Dontnod Entertainment’s Remember Me. If I had to choose, however, I’d go with Remember Me. This game was on the vaguest of “interesting” radars for me and when I first saw the teaser trailer, I initially brushed it off because Kezia Burrows’s voice acting sounded like another case of “French VA direction strikes again!” (See: Heavy Rain). However, the closer this game got to being released and the more I saw of it, the more excited I became about it. Develing into the external canon of the universe was incredible. The attention to detail about the Sensen technology, the guy who created it (Antoine Cartier-Wells), the gradual problem it created within a society that literally imploded on itself with an almost global war, told me from the get go this was not just an ordinary attempt to create a “Character Action Game” with platforming and puzzle segments. Their ambition was clearly to establish a world that you could come back to over and over in whichever form it took in transmedia.
Then there’s the fact that the developers appeared to genuinely give a fuck about the extents of agency and what they could do for their protagonist Nilin Cartier-Wells. They wanted to present her as a human being (where Crystal Dynamics was comfortable wrapping Lara Croft in tropes and abuse and Ellie is a vehicle primarily for Joel’s manpain), however idealistic that might be in an industry that runs from Black female protagonists and female sexuality (wherein she is not presented exclusively for the male gaze) like the damn plague.
However hindered it might’ve been in some aspects (either of their own making or Capcom interference), Nilin is one of the most liveliest characters I’ve had the fortune of playing as. Yet, Capcom didn’t do a great deal to promote it and I knew as soon as I saw the release date (June 3 —- just a few days shy of The Last of Us’s release date (June 14) in the states), compounded with its own problems, I knew this game would be royally fucked.
The game itself is gorgeous, but like many have stated, it is not without its flaws. While it lacks the general refinement of even the first Devil May Cry, Assassin’s Creed and the over-the-top Bayonetta, Remember Me, as far as gameplay goes, it’s not the “broken piece of shit” most love to pedal it off as. Combined with instances of motion sickness triggered by glitches that occur near death, and uncooperative camera, It’s frustrating as hell, pretty much like the “intentionally shit” controls for Shadow of the Colossus. Only I’m pretty sure the developers didn’t intent it to be. I’ve probably ragequit this game more than a handful of times because the combat is so rigid in how it wants you to approach its fountain of enemies that appear so often and typically without reason in some cases.
The remixing segments are the strongest gameplay elements in the game itself, and though it is a shame there’s so little of it, narratively, I can see why. So, grounds for improvement is possible, whether or not RM will get that second chance, however, is unlikely. Remember Me, however, is a rough diamond in a room full of brown and gray grimdark Triple A titles. I’d recommend you’d give it a try, because it’s great despite its flaws.
I loved this game, and I hope everyone knows it. It’s mixed race, female, homeless/poor protagonist is amazing. The combat voice acting is industry standard, not particularly better or worse, but the incidental dialog speaks volumes more than the words you hear. I have lots to say about this game, but right now I am ready to pour a drink to Dontnod and Capcom for just getting this to market.
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