Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena

I love deals and discounts and you are not going to get deals better than “The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena”. Based on the poor “The Chronicles of Riddick” movie that almost destroyed the career of actor Vin Diesel, Assault on Dark Athena was released in 2009 as a prequel to the movie.

However Assault on Dark Athena is not the first game based on the Riddick world. In 2004, “The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay” was the first game released based on the world and the developers had decided to add Escape from Butcher Bay as a bonus game along with Assault on Dark Athena.

So you are getting two games for the price of one!

Now games based on movies have a well-deserved reputation for being terrible; after playing both games, I am happy to say this is not the case for either Escape from Butcher Bay or Assault on Dark Athena. Both games are good.

The Chronicles of Riddick are both science fiction first-person action games. You control Riddick as he sneaked around Butcher Bay and Dark Athena, trying to find a way out of both places. I played the games back to back and the story flowed. The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay had Riddick escaping from the jail planet of Butcher Bay and Dark Athena continues where Butcher Bay left off with Riddick being captured by a group of ruthless mercenary after his escape from Butcher Bay and then trying to find a way off the mercenary’s ship called Dark Athena.

In terms of gameplay and story, there isn’t much difference between them. I guess it was a case of “if its not broken, don’t fix it” for the designers because there wasn’t a lot wrong. Both games used the same formula with Riddick using a combination of strange sci-fi weapons, stealth and hand to hand combat to stalk and kill his enemies. Anyone who had played any of the Splinter Cell games will feel right at home here.

The story of both games wasn’t much to shout about, the gameplay doesn’t really offer anything new but the sound and voice acting was top notch. As you crawled through the vents, walked along the dark corridors, fight against man and machines; all the experiences were accompanied by excellent sound. Even the dialogue between you and the NPCs was excellent.

The only real complain I have is that there is a certain case of “been there and done that” with the games. “The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena” does everything well, but it doesn’t offer anything new. If you are looking for a game that is offering something new and improved from regular stealth games like Splinter Cell, then you need to go elsewhere.

Still, outside that minor complain, I found “The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena” to be an excellent game. Both Dark Athena and Butcher Bay were good and it’s not often you can get 2 good games for the price of one. “The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena” is value for money and that is always good.

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