Mirror's Edge: Catalyst Review - Explore the City of Glass

Edited by Editorial Team2021-12-24

"Hey, do you know where Utopia is?"

"Is it also black or white?"

"Is it inside or outside?"

When asked this question, Faith ruffled the hair that had slipped from her right eye. She had not rested for a long time. After running through the block late last night, the strong tequila smell in the bar made her a little dizzy. Her smudged eye shadow now shows her tired eyes.

"Utopia? No one can get there. It's like a mirror. Where you are, so is Utopia."

When it comes to parkour games, what do we think of? For me, the first game that popped into my mind was the first game I played at a time when smartphones were not very popular - Temple Run, Mayan-style temples and chasing monsters became one of the most cherished memories of my childhood. However, with the continuous development of video games, parkour games have gradually become one of the more common mainstream AAA genres. With exploration games now commonplace with the mainstream gamer, those who play casually may still be unaware of their impact.. Guns and swords have always been romanticized but have you ever wondered what it would be like to gallop in a mirror-like city?

Maybe the Mirror's Edge series will give you the answer.

Mirror's Edge Catalyst is a first-person action game developed and produced by EA's leading brand DICE studio. In the game, the beauty of speed is at the forefront and you traverse tall buildings and leap from roof to roof in a fascinating way. The story of the game takes place in the near future. In a dystopian setting our protagonist tries to overthrow the totalitarian government Cascadia which has a strong hold of the majority of its citizens forcing them to work for a corporation who watch their every move. Much has changed between the First game in the series and Catalyst. If the first game is like an old life drama, the sequel is a popcorn commercial film full of special effects. The rhythm of the game has been improved qualitatively. Catalyst has many possibilities derived from the linearity of the original.

The fun of parkour itself is very pure, it is a sense of liberation that allows players to constantly conquer obstacles, and more importantly, this experience does not rely on the design to give players some kind of super power or high-tech props. Just like in real life there are many parkour enthusiasts doing what Faith does, which also makes the game experience extraordinarily real and exciting. At a more basic level, what makes this experience practical is the precise operation feedback and smooth and natural character movements of this game. In this regard, DICE's technical strength has undoubtedly been fully utilized.

From a style point of view, Catalyst has not changed much compared to the previous game, but it has changed from a single plot to a more open and thoughtful story. In addition to the main story, there are plenty of side quests to help fill in the blanks of the world and it’s dark secrets.. From a gameplay perspective, Catalyst is similar to that of Ubisoft's classic series Assassin's Creed. The map is large, but Divided into various areas, each area has a corresponding collection of various messenger documents, circuit boards, etc.

When progressing through the main story, side quest are unlocked which includes some extra tasks outside the plot and features in the game, for example the delivery of packages. Of course, unlike the heavy-duty express delivery in Death Stranding, most of us will only pick up some small packages or take on Parkour tasks such as collecting secret files, after all, having too many packages will slow down the parkour action, and the only criterion for completing the task is time. The faster you complete each task will also directly affect the totalf income you receive, in addition you can get experience when completing various tasks. These points can be used to purchase skills and equipment upgrades in the interface, and the interface maintains a clean and simple style as always.

As the core content of the game, parkour will be the most exposed element in the game. The first game was far from perfect so the sequel has added a new character upgrade system to help with game progression. Not only does this make you, the player, more adept at the game, you also feel a sense of satisfaction watching Faith grow as a person.

In addition to continuing the various classic parkour actions of the first game Faith can now roll after a long jump to minimize any damage and will still be able to run at high speed after landing. These actions however can only be unlocked later in the game. High-precision actions such as wall jumping, jumping on the ground, and rolling on the ground need to be unlocked with skill points. In addition,skills used with the new messenger package have also been added. In the later stages, you can even slide between buildings like Batman. Some racing missions can also be played to unlock these skills even faster.

In addition, the messenger vision of Catalyst is much clearer than in the first game. During the mission, we can observe the mission target in real time and have direct navigation. However, for many tasks, such as racing, the navigation route may not be the fastest. We can also switch the messenger vision to classic in the settings, or turn off the messenger vision to explore the entire game without any navigation and guidance.

In terms of combat, the combat system in Catalyst is also much more polished than before. While the first game had simple attacks, Catalyst has added many new ways to allow players to attack their enemies based on different situations. For example you can combo attacks with your punches using light and heavy attacks or even take on multiple enemies by directing your attacks from one enemy to the next. Faith’s trademark sliding attack has also been polished to allow for faster movement when attacking and offer a new way to dodge oncoming attacks. If punching and kicking isn’t appealing enough, you can also lift and throw the security guards from one building to the next if you prefer more of a wrestling approach to combat.

Another highlight of this game is that no matter where we run, we can find our own way. As the saying goes, all roads lead to Rome. Mom no longer has to worry about me getting lost, and the protagonist's figure is much lighter than mine. Outside of the gameplay, the music is an inseparable highlight of the Mirror's Edge series that attracts players.. Solar Fields returns once again to compose the soundtrack, so if you enjoyed the first game’s music, you will feel right at home in this one. The theme song for Catalyst was sung by a band called Chvrches who come from Scotland. Still Alive is more youthful, but the style of the whole song will be slightly ethereal, with a feeling of falling into a dream.

In general, Mirror's Edge: Catalyst is a special game. Its speciality is not in its core mechanics and gameplay, but in the theme of parkour. As the only game on the market that focuses on this element of parkour its originality brings us the amazing and unique game experience that is still hard to find elsewhere. Maybe it's the multi dimensional ways to move around the world and snow-white scenes in the game, maybe it's not suitable for all players, but as Faith said, for those who love it, this is utopia.

Mirror Edge


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