Deadly Premonition: Directors Cut is an open-world game set in Greenvale, a secluded rural town in North West America. Playing as FBI Special Agent Francis York, gamers are charged with solving the shocking, ritualistic and brutal murder of a local girl, unravelling the mystery via clues, lies and a trail of bodies. Agent York travels around Greenvale in a variety of vehicles – entertaining gamers with facts about movies along the way – encountering eccentric natives, supernatural creatures and a folklore killer, who stalks his victims in a blood-drenched rain coat.
Having already seen a console release in 2010 on the Xbox 360, you may have heard the rumours surrounding this game, but let me use this review to put the record straight. Deadly Premonition is STILL (even in this directors cut version) one of the best worst games ever made. Ever.
The first thing that struck you about the Xbox 360 version of Deadly Premonition was the terrible control system and the early-2000′s era graphics. Coming across as something you’d see on the original Xbox – the graphics looked lo-res at times and definitely sub-par – especially when compared to the similarly-themed Alan Wake. However this new PS3-exclusive iteration of the game, dubbed Deadly Premonition: Directors Cut to differentiate it from the original, features a completely reworked control system and mappable controls allow for an even better combat experience AND a complete graphic overhaul with new HD textures! Whilst there may be new aspects to this directors cut what hasn’t changed is the fantastically original real time “hygiene” aspect that once again means shaving, showering and eating are essential – Agent York’s level of hygiene actually has consequences within the game as it influences the towns folk’s perceptions of him… Which frankly is a genius idea!
And that’s not the only genius idea in the game – from the level design and character design to the story, Deadly Premonition: Directors Cut is full of superb ideas. OK, some of the ideas may be the work of a completely mad genius but they’re still genius! And the mad genius himself, game director Hidetaka “Swery65″ Suehiro has also contributed a new scenario in this release that will please new and hardcore fans alike.
Thankfully the tweaks to this new iteration of Deadly Premonition doesn’t effect what made the original game so great – the tension, which really grabs you from the get go. Much like Alan Wake before it, and even moreso Dead Space, Deadly Premonition: Directors Cut is friggin’ scary! In fact I don’t think I’ve jumped out of my skin as much playing a video game since the first time I played Dead Space.
If the game doesn’t feature the greatest graphics or controls (which are still a little “iffy” in this new version), what Deadly Premonition has OVER other horror video game titles is the longevity. Between the main game, the side quests and mini-games – such as darts, fishing and collecting trading cards(?) – you’ll be playing this game for anywhere up to a reported 60 hours! I’ll admit I’ve been playing the game for a number of hours now and I still feel like I haven’t even scratched the surface of the game. Admittedly you can finish the game without completing all the quests and mini games and just complete the main story, but you’ll miss out on some superb, if sometimes very weird, aspects of the game.
It’s all been said before but, yes Deadly Premonition: Directors Cut is like playing a console version of David Lynch’s Twin Peaks, complete with the same strange scenarios, bizarre characters and just downright eeriness. Buy it now. Seriously. Or I’ll be round to force-feed you pickles…