Eye for an eye

Who I am
Alejandra Rangel
@alejandrarangel
Author and references

There are games that win you over from the first moment, thanks to a narrative device or a particularly engaging situation. Think, for example, of the first sequences of Uncharted 2, with Drake who wakes up, injured, inside a train car that is about to fall into the void. The excellent title of Naughty Dog has certainly "raised the bar" as far as the artistic direction of video games is concerned, but there are numerous games capable of capturing attention right from the start. Here, unfortunately the thing failed at Streum On Studio with the ambitious EYE: Divine Cybermancy, which is in many ways an antithesis to the correct way of "directing" a videogame. Having started a new game, he asks us to select a series of geniuses to give life to our character, who, depending on the choices made, can boast a greater propensity for combat rather than an extraordinary ability with hacking procedures.



No suggestion is provided in support of the operation, after which we find ourselves in a sort of "stasis" until we reach a luminous door, beyond which a cave awaits us. It is in this dark place that the "tutorial" relating to the control system takes place, as well as the first fight against an enemy creature, without however any presentation explaining who we are, what we are doing, why we are there. This whole phase is extremely slow and cumbersome. Arriving in front of an elevator, we press the button to start it but we inadvertently get off the platform, only to discover that there is no way to call it back and that therefore we have to start the game all over again if we do not want to use the very long ladder next to it.


Elbow learning curve

What appears clear from the first minutes is that the intention of the developers was to create a hardcore product, which takes a few hours just to be understood, only to be quite simple and linear in the structure of the missions. The guys from Streum On Studio have not bothered to introduce the actions that can be performed as it happens in any video game for several years now, in a progression made purely of gameplay, but have inserted video tutorials that should explain us what to do in certain situations. .


A solution with an unavoidably amateurish and very annoying flavor, which however finds little response even in the current independent scene. The plot of EYE: Divine Cybermancy revolves around a secret society of which our character is a part, a society that must face a series of external threats but at the same time a dangerous internal erosion triggered by two opposing factions. Dialogues with NPCs are numerous and relatively verbose, but can provide a more detailed picture of the situation. The game does nothing to encourage us to do so, however, and even a hasty approach to the experience can only reserve a bitter aftertaste. The possibility of interacting with the dialogues, in the style of Mass Effect, opens the way to a series of alternative possibilities that make the carrying out of missions quite dynamic, thanks also to the addition of secondary objectives. The RPG elements of the game are represented by the leveling of the character and the consequent access to weapons and powers initially blocked, but even the management of these aspects did not seem convincing. In fact, it is enough to approach one of the various armories to discover that it is possible to use almost all rifles immediately, and that the only limit for the transport of equipment and ammunition is constituted by the scope of the inventory. The latter works a bit like that of the Resident Evil series, with a certain number of blocks that need to be filled with weapons and objects of different "sizes". Then the problem of the lack of progression returns, as you are immediately armed to the teeth, without the need to conquer anything, ready to open fire on some enemy.


Find and destroy

The shooter dynamics of EYE: Divine Cybermancy appear well implemented: the weapons return a good feeling of impact and the choice to make "realistic" the wounding of the basic enemies (which therefore go down even with just a couple of well-aimed shots) works well in the context of the missions. What doesn't work is the interface, absolutely bad and badly organized. Putting aside the poor support for the Xbox 360 controller (we tried to make it work, but the right stick remained unused), the layout of the controls proves to be cumbersome and inconvenient even for the configuration with keyboard and mouse.


Luckily, by looking in the options you can customize the controls so that you can use a hot key to perform a certain action, but this is only a confirmation of how badly the interface has been thought. At a certain point in the plot you begin to go around to access different types of missions, which generally involve completing multiple objectives, such as eliminating a target, hacking a device and finally reaching a certain extraction point. The feeling, however, is that of being in a sort of mission editor, see also the infinite respawn of the enemies and their poor AI, which simply leads them to come forward, perhaps counting on their number, rather than maybe lurking to give life to one firefight proper. As for the hacking procedures, you have to perform them through a fairly simple minigame but spoiled by some limits that are far from negligible, which refer to the first part of the review, when we talked about the creation of the character. If you do not stay on a balanced model, for example, and you create a very strong warrior but with poor intellectual skills, then these minigames can become a small nightmare and in the most advanced stages we can hope to complete them successfully only if we buy upgrades. special.


Technical realization

EYE: Divine Cybermancy uses the Source as a graphic engine, an undoubtedly prestigious but now very limited solution, which unfortunately Streum on Studio has not been able to exploit with the same effectiveness as Valve. The game moves quite smoothly even on low-medium configurations, such as the test one, but is much heavier than products like Left 4 Dead 2, despite not putting in (even remotely) the same numbers.


If, with the same resolution and maximum effects, the popular zombie shooter runs at sixty frames per second with little uncertainty, EYE does not reach forty. The cities in which we wander around to complete the missions are excessively bare and poor, they look like multiplayer maps that have no narrative vocation. There's a bit of a Blade Runner vibe here and there, with the glowing billboards standing out in the greenish fog, but in general it's all too empty and dull. The situation gets worse in the locations where we have to move from one side to the other, perhaps to talk to some NPCs, with huge spaces to cover that do not contribute in any way to making things more fun, indeed! Some design ideas are still valid, for example the appearance of our character and his "colleagues", a sort of modern samurai armed with a sword (with which they can even deflect bullets!) And rifles, but equipped with an animation just sufficient. Finally, the sound sector is too ethereal to add anything to the experience, and it is a shame because at least in this sense a little more effort could be made.

Comment

Resources4Gaming.com

5.5

Readers (30)

6.6

Your vote

There are definitely people who will find it EYE: Divine Cybermancy a very enjoyable title; perhaps precisely because of its complexity, of its being "old school" in an increasingly "consoled" PC market, for the good (let's repeat it) shooter dynamics, for the many weapons available, for the possibility of buying upgrades of all kinds and finally for the interesting cooperative multiplayer mode. The point is that the Streum on Studio product is plagued by so many problems that it is really difficult to recommend buying it lightly, at a price so budget but not that much. Do you remember The Scourge Project? Also an independent title, but in its small way made much better and sold for 14,99 euros. Perhaps the problem with EYE is precisely this: a project that is too "large", too much meat on the fire, which has led the developers to lose sight of the basics.

PRO

  • Good number of missions, weapons and equipment
  • Interesting cooperative multiplayer mode
  • Good shooter dynamics
AGAINST
  • Poor presentation and interface
  • Rather poor enemy AI
  • Technically dated

PC System Requirements

Test Setup

  • Processore Intel Core i3 350M
  • 4 GB of RAM
  • Scheda video ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650
  • Windows 7 operating system

Minimum requirements

  • Intel Pentium IV 3.0 GHz processor, AMD Athlon 64 3000+
  • 1 GB in RAM (Windows XP), 2 GB in RAM (Windows Vista, 7)
  • Video card ATI Radeon X800, NVIDIA GeForce 6600
  • 6 GB of free hard disk space
  • Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 operating system

Recommended Requirements

  • Processore Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz, AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+
  • 1 GB in RAM (Windows XP), 2 GB in RAM (Windows Vista, 7)
  • Video card ATI Radeon X1600, NVIDIA GeForce 7600
  • 6 GB of free hard disk space
  • Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 operating system
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