Detroit: Become Human Review
REVIEWED ON: PlayStation 4 (Original)
Difficulty Played On: Experienced (Recommended)
Quantic Dream has taken interactive storytelling to a new level with their new emotional take on androids becoming more human. Detroit: Become Human has tons of possibilities that lead players to have unique experiences, characters brought to life thanks to excellent performance, and themes that are extremely relevant and well handled.
Detroit Become Human takes players to a near-future Detroit where human-like android are beginning to replace human jobs and help owners with daily tasks. Some have accepted this new way of life while others protest the android very existence. Although some androids have suddenly become deviant and begun to feel human emotions. So as more androids begin to become deviant players must explore the stories of Kara, an android protecting a young girl, Markus, the leader of android rebellion, and Connor, a detective android trying to put a stop to deviants. With their choices shaping who their characters are and how others will view androids, the fate of Detroit and android-kind is in the player’s hands.
The world of Detroit is incredibly gorgeous to be in and is constantly evolving as players learn what is happening outside of the main characters stories. Street signs, discussions overheard from other Detroit residents, and collectible magazines that can be found throughout chapters that delve a little deeper in views on androids being implemented into society. Some tackle ideas as simple as androids being involved in sports and other discuss tensions between governments and countries.
Choice is literally a part of Detroit: Become Human’s DNA as player’s choice has drastic effects on what happens in their stories. Chapters could possibly never be seen, characters can die, other side characters’ opinions can change as well as the public’s opinions on androids, and situations can play out entirely different from how players expected. Players will become enamored by the amount of choices they can see a flowchart after every chapter with the possibly hundreds of choices they missed and will want to go back to see what they missed.
However, there are some choices that players will make that will frustrate them (and not in a good/satisfying). When given a set of choices, some can feel generically worded and players that think they are passively saying something to their partner can suddenly make an aggressive comment towards them. There are not too many of them, but these kinds of choices can lead players to ruining relationships and killing characters when they didn’t really mean to.
Players will love each of the main characters in Detroit: Become Human as they all go through incredibly emotional moments even though they don’t share the same blood and guts. Their stories really do feel like they matter and the characters’ relationship feel important to how they want their stories being told. These characters are also brought to life thanks to the incredible talents of the voice cast. With the talents of Jesse Williams, Valorie Curry, Bryan Dechart, Clancy Brown, and many others, players will care for each of the characters and their struggles.
Quantic Dream has gone a step further in bringing these characters to life with the incredible use of motion-capture. Each actors facial expressions are captured flawlessly and translate well to situations in-game that make for incredibly realistic reactions and movements.
These characters also help build the story to have relevant and important social themes that are never too overdone. Ideas of equality, being different, and love are spread throughout each of the characters’ plots and each of these themes fits perfectly into the story.
When controlling these characters, however, players might feel annoyed by the game’s clunky controls and odd quick-time events. Now those who have never played a Quantic Dream game before will undoubtedly be shocked by the game’s lame controls as characters can feel impossible to move in the direction they want to be going in. However, these moments are far and in between and won’t impact on the game’s experience in any way.
Detroit: Become Human is also littered with plenty of quick-time action sequences that use the full-range of movement of the PS4 controller. These moments are some of the most enjoyable of the game as they give players a real challenge and don’t feel too unforgiving. There is one issue, however, as some movements that make you move with the right stick and move with the whole controller look too similar and can cause players to make unfair mistakes.
The game’s trophies also allow players to want to go back to try to get a unique view of the story. While some have players do the opposite of possible choices they made in their original playthrough, others can have players experience the Detroit story in a whole new way. Not to mention, replayability is made much easier with a chapter select option after beating the roughly 10 to 12 hour experience with the option to save over previous save or not.
Detroit: Become Human is an incredible experience that cannot be missed. It blends great acting with some fun and somewhat clunky controls that shape a world that many might feel isn’t too far off from our own.