My favorite third-person-shooter
The story is strait-forward, you are Isaac Clarke and engineer sent with your crew to fix a communications problem with your crew. The game begins as you arrive at the game's primary setting, the USG Ishimura, a planet-cracker class (Named such because they pull a large section of a planet out and suspend it for mining purposes), a mining vessel sent to the planet Aeigis 7. The crew crashes on the ship. You can see soon that the ship is filled with infected human corpses, mutated by aleins. The game escallates after the aleins destroy the only obvious way off of the ship, your shuttle. The game has you completing various tasks as well as unravelling what happened. Even meeting some of the rather insane survivors.
Your anatgonists are the Necromorphs, an alein race of horribly mutated human corpses.
My criticism with the story is that there are some cliche moments, mostly ragarding Nicole, Isaac's girlfriend, however, and I won't spoil it, but by the end, it's gets more strange then cliche.
The game also makes you question whether or not certian moments of the game are real considering their circumbstances. It's related to the situation with Nicole, and is answered towards the end, but you are not the only one seeing things.
Something I like about the story is that when you think something good is going to happen, finding a way off the ship, seeing a survivor or friend, ect. the entire thing falls apart before your eyes. During these moments you can't do anything but watch.
The ship and Marker (A religious artifact) also feel like characters. The ship likes to intimidate you and set dark moods, inconvieniences, lead you into traps, play around with your mind, and destroying every hope you happen to see. The Marker is like a manipulative being that uses you to meet it's ends by at some times lying to you, and playing with your mind. Often tricking you into thinking threats are nearby or waling you into traps, making you vulnurable or conscious of everthing.
There is some backtrack, but in context with the story it makes sense and the scenery changes over time, so your second visit looks different enough fo it to be excusable.
Isaac Clarke faces off against the reanimated Captain Matthius
The game play is the crowning achievement of the entire game. There is no HUD, instead vitals are placed on the suit and everything else is on on-the-fly holograms including items and messages. This immurses you in the game very well. Another thing is that your weapons are all repurposed mining tools. The only weapon in the game designed with the intention to kill someone was the Pulse Rifle. You can imagine with such weapons as enery cutters, telekenitic chop saws, flamethrowers and guns that fire pure gravity more powerful then explosives, that it is indeed fun to use them on nice organic targets. You also have two "powers", a stasis module that will slow down time on what you aim it at, and a kenesis module that allows you to pick up items, similar to telekenis. The combat is unique, do you normally shoot at the body to kill your enemies? Loss that habit. Fast. These enemies won't die off body shots, you must cut off a few limbs to kill them.
Another section is the zero gee sections with extrordinary physics, everything floats and moves just as you would expect it too without gravity. Then with that there are the vaccum sections, where air is cut off and you must relie on the limited air in your suit.
The game really mostly scares you if you play it unspoiled and are the one playing it instead of watching. There are parts of the game that stress you out and make your hair stand on end no matter how many times you play, like when facing the Hunter, or a brute, or even when the lights go off and you hear movement all around you in the dark.
Even if the game does not scare you the action is more then enough to compensate and satisfy.
Graphics and Art
The games art is excellent all dark, gloomy, and bloody, similar to Gears of War but with a more black color scheme. The scenery and ship are made so that the ship looks like one that someone could plausably live on. The ship is gun metal gray for the most part, similar to gears of war in color scheme but wiht less of a brown/ivory scheme and more plack, bloody and small amounts of others. The graphics are very good, but there are other games who have done it better. They certainly get the job done and are still good.
An infector, killing and infecting a careless player
The game has a new game plus, this is mostly for upgrading and getting bounuses for completing the game, you cannot switch difficulty though.
The game also has DLC, mostly avatar items and suits, and mods.
The Advanced Hazard Engineer RIG: Elite Class, exclusive DLC for Xbox 360 only.
I personally loved the game.