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Stealth Inc. A Clone in the Dark Review

Platformers and handhelds go together, which is why Stealth Inc. A Clone in the Dark, for PS Vita is a pretty brilliant match for Sony’s handheld console.

Coming from Curve Studios, the game treats us with a full campaign, free DLC for two weeks after the release date and a Level Editor, meaning that it packs in enough content to keep anyone who purchases it going for a long time. Even better news is that it’s a pretty solid game, with tough puzzles and some fantastic presentation. So what’s not to love?

Stealth Inc. sees you guiding a clone through a serious of levels which are ever increasing in difficulty. There are no weapons, instead it’s all about avoiding the security cameras, turrets and marching robot sentries by staying in the shadows, while trying to open doors, press buttons and generally survive the watchful eye of those searching for you. Stand in the light too long and you’ll be blasted to pieces, so the aim is all about staying hidden and using the darkness to your advantage.

There are many ways to avoid being caught in the early stages, such as pushing boxes to create shadows or just by getting the timing right as the cameras avert their gaze to an opposite direction. Gameplay really is all about tactics, about taking it slow as you approach a problem, which is one of the things which makes this game stand out. Generally you have time to think about the problem, rather than having to rush through it and make a mistake, although saying that, you are being timed, so getting through the levels faster will see you finish higher up the leaderboards.

Given that you are playing as a clone, there are plenty more where he came from, so killing one will just see another respawn. Thankfully, you do have some help in the shape of your clone’s goggles which provide a nice visual aid. When green these googles show that the cameras can not see you, although when red your clone is probably dead already. There are also some visual aids on the wall on occasion thanks to an anonymous watcher who provides encouraging words such as ‘I like your thinking’ when celebrating your success to more depressing words such as ‘Am I A Bad Teacher?’ when acknowledging your failures. These words add a nice personal tough to the game, although that’s hardly comforting when your clone has just been splattered against the wall.

To mix things up a little, as you complete levels you’ll also get upgrades should you wish to play through the same level again. These upgrades help you get the job done quicker, providing alternative clothing such as the Camouflage Suit to equipment such as the Holographic and Sonic decoys or even two handheld portals which allow you to teleport between them. Using these upgrades adds a whole new dimension to the levels, meaning that you’ll probably play through the 80 odd levels more than once in order to unlock them all.

One of the things which sticks out most about Stealth Inc is that it is tough as nails. While the earlier levels are easily negotiable, later on things just get so difficult that you’ll soon be tearing your hair out in frustration. While this level of difficulty may generally be a turn off for some, there is something about this game which keeps you hooked and therefore less likely to throw the Vita at a window in anger.

Graphically Stealth Inc is a bit of a looker. The HD graphics really suit this title, providing crisp and clear detail, all the way down to your clone who looks fantastic with his green glowing eyes (if your doing it right). Accompanying these stellar looks is equally stellar sound effects and music, which not only help add to the atmosphere but also help in notching the tension up to maximum.

As mentioned earlier, Stealth Inc also includes a level editor within its menus. The level editor is fairly simple to use, first starting off by asking your to choose your level size and then by giving you a blank canvas to work from. To create a level you’ll choose from a series of game objects such as moving platforms, doors, switches, tiles, lights and all other manner of options which help you to build your creation.

It’s great to see a unique title such as Stealth Inc hitting this PS Vita because it’s the sort of game which really makes the handheld what it is. Stealth Inc provides players with an easy to pick up title which is great for short bursts of play but also addictive enough to keep playing for hours should you so wish. There is a lot of content to be had in this fantastic title and no real reason that I can think of as to why you shouldn’t own it. So do yourself a favour and press the purchase button.

(Version Tested: PS Vita)


+ Addictive
+ Hard as nails
+ Looks Fantastic
+ Hours of Gameplay


- Hard as nails

Edited On 23 Jul, 2013

( 2 )
Loli-Nox-Tan's avatar
Loli-Nox-Tan 4 years ago
Really? Stealth Inc? That's a stupid name for the awesome Stealth Bastard
shiny miller's avatar
shiny miller 4 years ago
Or 'Stealth Bastard Deluxe: Tactical Espionage Arsehole' for the full name. Not too surprised they've altered it for the Vita version!

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