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Chronicles Of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay; I wish it didn’t end up this way

Content of the article: "Chronicles Of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay; I wish it didn’t end up this way"

I recall this game was well received and I'm sure there's people who still like it. But for me, it's a shame the gameplay did not let me get through what was otherwise everything I liked.

The game is based on a gritty, grungy sci-fi setting that feels grounded. The main character is my kind of badass, and the writing is not about right or wrong, but the gray area in between. I liked the story and dialogue overall, and at times it was a little thought-provoking. There's some great base material here for something phenomenal to be built on, but from what I've seen the games and movies have fallen short.

Speaking of this first game in particular, Escape From Butcher Bay, it has a promising start. I was really getting into it, but after a whole evening of playing more than half of the game, I decided to watch the rest of the story on Youtube. The fundamental mechanics of the game became too much to slog through.

The game utilizes shooting, melee combat and stealth. All 3 of which felt janky enough (for my tastes) to kill some of my intrigue. The stealth is okay, it allows you to shoot/turn off lights, attack from above an enemy, hiding bodies, different ways of taking someone out. It's not deep stealth, but I wouldn't say it's that light that it's existence is unfounded.

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Aiming your gun around is floaty and shooting feels off. The spread makes it feel like you're spurting bullets into the air, which starts to become a pain at any decent range and really fucks it up when some of the harder enemies hit quite well. The guns also have little to no feedback, no oomph.

I am usually fine with old mechanics or wonky controls, and have dealt with a number of games that might be considered borderline unplayable by others. The melee combat here is one of the few instances where, although it worked, just drove me away. Most of the time you have to hold the block button, let the enemy go at it for a while, then find an opening for 1-2 hits before you go back to blocking again. It both plays and feels quite poor, and then you have some "miniboss" enemies that have to be fought hand to hand. They do more damage, take much longer to be defeated, and are sharper at blocking. Combine all of what I mentioned and it's a disappointing experience that I got through initially, but when it came up again after some notable in-game moments I decided it's not worth my time.

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I'm sure some of you reading this were able to play through this game fine, in which case I'm glad you experienced what I consider a decent enough game. For me though, this partial experience is enough for me to move on. Hopefully we'll see something better done in this franchise in the near future.


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