Detroit: Become Human fails to subvert doubts


#22

but it seems like as long as production values are high it doesn’t matter if the writing is bad or the story is dumb.

See also: Auto, Grand Theft; War, God of


#23

Hi, welcome to the discourse dot zone.


#24

Well I mean we dunked on him when the game was announced and when trailers were released. Now the game is out and it is still a David Cage game. I feel like the discourse should include the fact that his plan worked.


#25

I’m not sure if even The Chaos Dunk could stop David Cage from David Caging all over the place tho


#26

It seems that the critical reception is negative among the outlets that don’t give review scores. Outlets that still do scores seem to be more positive, which means that people who want to like this game can look to the numbers for validation.


#27

Yea, the whole “unscored/in-progress” section of Metacritic is… pretty savage.


#28

And I get that, i just feel like that was to be expected. I think it’s more interesting that David Cage’s bs still continues to be viable in the mainstream gaming community, especially since the community is generally anti-walking sim, anti-preachy.


#29

This isn’t me trying to do like, a fun dunk or anything, but I gotta say.

The “we have a dream” prompt is genuinely nauseating to look at. It’s no secret that the memory of MLK been made much softer and much more feel good in pop-culture, so I should have expected something like this.

But man seeing a game that has so very little to say, from a studio like Quanitc Dreams, invoke MLK ain’t great.


#30

The game has a big fat blazing 80 on Metacritic at the moment, with 73 reviews counted - from dozens of outlets I’ve never heard of and would never fucking read like “Hardcore Gamer” and “Attack of the Fanboy”, alongside proper outlets like IGN and EGM. The pull quotes generally praise how far in different directions the branching stories will take you. As is typically the case in games, the audience is more readily impressed by how much freedom they are apparently given, and how the game ‘responds’ to their choices, than anything else. Detroit is being positioned as an artistic achievement not for the quality of its storytelling, but for the sheer breadth of it (read: content): many reviews mention how they are excited to keep going down all the different dozens of paths they have yet to discover.

As a game that meets a specific, extremely literal, technical vision of the future of games, Detroit is an accomplishment in the eyes of many. At first blush, at least, it appears to surpass the expectations of what players think is realistic for how much AAA, hand-crafted content a developer can cram into a game. It seems unbelievable that it was possible, and that really seems to be what most are responding to. A 95% review from Areajugones exalts its “huge script”, and the 90% review from Attack of the Fanboy declares “the amount of narrative content is incredibly massive”. JeuxActu is extremely fucking on the nose with their 90% review of Detroit: “Detroit: Become Human is by far the most branching game ever made.” Nevermind whether or not the writing is good; it’s just fuckin amazing that there is SO MUCH writing, SO MUCH acting, SO MANY cutscenes and button prompts.

Like sure, the usual suspects are ripping this game to shreds, but they aren’t strictly disagreeing with those who like it; they are judging it on entirely different merits than those who are singing its praises.

One Planet, Two Gamers: the one who wants the Forever Game, and the one who wants the Citizen Kane of games


#31

Maybe, just maybe, it was intentional to giving codes to scores of sub-tier publications that report to Metacritic.


#32

There was an Xbox exec last year (during that whole “single player games are dead” discourse that went on) who I guess wasn’t wrong when she said that the average gamer wants realistic graphics and high resolution.

I think Quantic Dream’s budget is enough to get them by with a lot of the mainstream community.


#33

worth noting IGN, Game Informer, and EGM all gave it an 8


#34

Seeing co-option of black thought as a black person is more than a little frustrating, to say the least. Especially since MLK wasn’t a liberal and would be rolling in his fucking grave. rubs temples


#35

After this and Fallout 4 I am hoping the trope of using androids as a metaphor for POC dies out ASAP. We get it, you found a way to give the slaves white faces.
I wonder why the mainstream gaming community enjoys fighting against the oppression of a mainly white race lol.


#36

Honestly. Like, I get the point of synths in Fallout 4 and the (very shitty) analogy being made, but I just don’t care.

Are synths people? I don’t know, who gives a shit? It’s weird that people in the industry just can’t say “oppression is bad, actually” without equating POC, or therefore any minority, really, to robots.


#37

“Oppression is bad actually but if you want to murder every synth you see and then inherit the Future Plantation go for it”


#38

David Cage has all the subtlety and nuance of a sledgehammer. It’s actually embarrassing how juvenile and basic his narratives and themes are, but also how brilliant he thinks he is.

“Racism is bad”. Yeah no shit, David.


#39

I’m suspect that I would agree with those reviewers, I’m definitely going to play it because I want to see for myself. But maybe I will agree with these reviews from those big three because their analysis in the text doesn’t give me the impression of an 8/10 game. I don’t envy anyone that has to critique a David Cage game for a mainstream reader.


#40

Video game criticism is still somewhat rigidly tied to the old ways of evaluating technical prowess and advancement over most everything else. A lot of outlets also trip all over themselves in order to be the first to worship at the alter of any sort of “artistic” anything as if it grants the medium as a whole more legitimacy. Find a polished, cinematic game with a crap story, and I’ll show you a line of critics and gamers alike eagerly lining up to give it a tongue bath. It’s why people praise heap on RDR, a game where a boring blank slate gets lead around by the nose like a moron for 40 hours complaining about it all the while, or TLoU where someone played mad libs with zombie movie tropes and called it a day.

I’m sure Detroit looks, and behaves incredibly well. I’m sure if I sat down to play it, I would be amazed by the graphics I was seeing, the recreating of human expressions, the set design, the camera angles, etc. I’ve no doubt it’s a very cinematic experience, and for some that’s worthy of heaps of praise. A rotten story in a gorgeous film will typically get panned in a way that will me mostly glossed over for games.


#41

For sure, I’m not meaning to imply that IGN, EGM, and Game Informer are going to better align with your views, but rather that even respected outlets beyond the sub-tier publications who clog up Metacritic averages are praising the game for being More Game, above all else