Get Even Review

Waking up dazed and confused in an abandoned asylum is no one’s idea of fun. More so when the majority of your memory is erased with only the sole purpose of saving a girl left bouncing around your mind. But that’s exactly the position lead character Cole Black finds himself in Get Even, a psychological puzzle shooter from Polish studio The Farm 51, and published by Bandai Namco.

The key focus of Get Even leans toward the notion of memory, and the ability to not only re-live your own harrowing experiences, but also that of those around you. It’s an interesting and unique concept to enter the gaming industry as it asks one question of yourself; how do you feel about the decisions you make? Especially when those may not have been the wisest of life choices. But the past is the past, right?

Without question the strongest element to Get Even lay within its story. Starting as Cole in the eerie asylum setting, there’s an instant feel of mystery and desire to find out what is going on. Cole himself is a bit of a shady character with quite a chequered past. And as you get to grips with the games controls via occasional tutorial prompts, you quickly discover that you need to rescue a young girl who is in the unfortunate position of having a bomb strapped to her.

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You start off with a smartphone that features a variety of tech from florescent lighting to track down footprints to a handy, if not occasionally awkward map. Coupled with this you’ll find yourself equipped with a silenced pistol that in the early stages, is sparsely required.   Infiltrating the asylum and taking down the supposed kidnappers is not enough to save the bomb from detonating, but this is where all is not what it seems as Cole awakens.

And this is just within the first half hour of the game. It’s grabbed you and you want to know more. You’ll soon find that you become guided through the early stages of Get Even by a mysterious person known only as Red. As you progress under Red’s guidance, you find yourself questioning their own motivations. Something never feels quite right but in the positive way of keeping you engaged. And as you progress, you have to revisit your own memories as a way of completing the jumbled up jigsaw of a memory you have been burdened with. And the results lead to a fantastic ending that will only leave you thinking more and more about certain aspects and subjects. We’ll not dive any deeper into the story however. It’s one best experienced yourself.

Puzzle solving takes the forefront for the majority of the game with shooting becoming slowly more prominent within the second half. You’ll find yourself looking for clues often with your smart phone. Sadly the majority of puzzles appear less engaging or thought provoking to the player. And with shooting also playing second fiddle, the true drive through Get Even is its own intrigue.

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One aspect worth noting is its use of a corner gun. Which is what it says on the tin. A nifty weapon that can be aimed 90 degrees and offers a fresh take within console shooting. It’s a challenge in itself to master, and can sometimes feel like a puzzle in its own right. But with the right execution, it becomes one of the more satisfying weapons to use in recent years.

The graphics are no great shakes in 2017. Whilst it is by no means a travesty, it’s not going to win any artistic design of the year awards. That being said, it would be wrong to be too harsh as it is pleasing to look at aesthetically and captures a solid replication of the environments it portrays. It has a true Eastern Europe asylum feel to it, something that would be much suited to a film in the Hostel series.

There’s plenty to come back to with Get Even. You may miss various clues and want to discover more. It’s also worth noting that you might want to return for the outstanding soundtrack alone which offers plenty of tension and hits the right notes with the right instruments at almost every point of the game adding to the psychological suspense and your own experience.

Like following a trail of jelly beans or one of those page turning books you just have to continue with, Get Even excels fantastically with a plot that just teases you to keep going. And whilst the puzzling aspect feels a bit second rate, the story and use of unique weapons such as the corner gun are more than enough to warrant your time with Cole Black. You might not have experienced another game like this, and it would take a strong studio to recreate such a fantastic atmosphere.

Get Even is available to download now from the Xbox Store, priced £23.99

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