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The Order 1886 - hands on with an airship


The Order 1886 arrives early next year and I was lucky enough to test out the demo which was shown to the general public at the PlayStation Experience last weekend. The Order hasn't had much luck convincing people of its merits, having been much criticised by members of the public and press, all based on previous gameplay footage. Many had been worrying that the action would be too quicktime heavy, which I can tell you based on my experience, is not the case. Indeed so far, it plays as good as it looks and oh how it looks.

There is no doubt in my mind that The Order 1886 is one of the most stunning looking games that I've ever had the pleasure to lay eyes on. The level of detail is incredible and married with the wonderful performance of the actors, on occasion it's more like watching an interactive movie than a video game. 



The demo I tried out took part on an airship, with the order trying to take control and stop an assassination from taking place. The section that I played started with the main characters rappelling down the side of the balloon, with some jaw dropping scenery being seen far below. The opening part of the demo was fairly slow to get going, having you scurry through the airship in order to get to the control room. This involved using a tool to disrupt some electrics, before eventually coming across a few guards who you take down using the much maligned quicktime controls.

Things speed up a little later, as you find yourself in combat with the enemy. In this respect, The Order really is a third person cover-based shooter at heart and not just a series of quicktime events. This was quite clear to me as I progressed further through the level. It's also quite accomplished, with plenty of weapons on offer and ample places to hide from enemy bullets. If an enemy does get too close you can take them down with a quick press of the triangle button or you can also use stealth to take them down from behind, but once the action starts, the quicktime events practically disappear and you are left with a full on gun battle in order to win the day.



In all, the demo I played was only around 30 minutes long, but it was enough to convince me that I want to see more. It also showed me that letter boxing in games is something I'm not too bothered about if the action is engrossing enough, indeed I didn't even notice the game had letter boxing until someone pointed it out to me. It's also worth mentioning that the frame rate is as smooth as butter, so that'll be another complaint that's rather unjustified, even if the game is only running at 30 frames per second.

It is fair to say that The Order does feel very cinematic in nature and this comes down to the camera angles, the slight grain effect and the minimalist hub, which sacrifices the convenience of a weapons wheel or map for a more realistic feel.

The success of The Order 1886 will come down to how it balances the third person action with the QTE's and the storytelling. In the missions I played this was pretty much perfect, but I'm holding out judgement until I've played more. One things for sure, the promise and potential is there.

Edited On 10 Dec, 2014

Comments
( 1 )
inspector 74's avatar
inspector 74 2 years ago
U know what Joe you're probably one of the only reviewers opinions and articles I read all the way through and your the first to praise the game, from what was suggested by many others where that the targeting was way off and that the guns on offer didn't 'feel' different was that the case or??? Im with you mate this game looks amazing but I had heard so much 'badness' surrounding the levels played so far and it could finally be the 'must have' game that many early PS4 adopters have waited so long for, nice one Joe keep up the good work mate

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