Six – Mirror’s Edge PC

Publisher: Electronic Arts
UK Price: £7.99 (incl. VAT)
US Price: $21.99 (excl. Tax)
Bit-tech.net Score: 9 out of 10 - Recommended

The PC version of DICE’s phenomenal parkour platformer only just sneaked it into voting this year on the merit of being released at the very, very beginning. We toyed with the idea of cutting it out on the basis that it already won a place in the Top Five of 2008 for the console version, but in the end we couldn’t bring ourselves to do it. Like you, we’re big fans of this unusual little free-running game.

Telling the story of an illegal courier called Faith who has to fight to clear her sister’s name after she is framed for murder, Mirror’s Edge stands out mainly for using an unusual visual style to accentuate the run-and-jumping that forms the bulk of the action, rather than the plot. Despite being penned by Rhianna Pratchett, daughter to the famed creator of Discworld, the plot of Mirror’s Edge is actually pretty flimsy and it isn’t helped by the basic, cartoony cutscenes that look like they were done in Flash either.

*Top 10 Games of The Year 2009 Sixth Best Game of 2009
Mirror's Edge - 6th Place

That’s OK though, as Mirror’s Edge makes up for it in other areas – namely the sense of speed and the thrill of being chased across dysto-utopian rooftops, the soles of your shoes assaulting the skyline of the city. More of a first person platformer than anything else, there really isn’t any other game that’s quite like Mirror’s Edge. In an industry that’s filled to the limits with endless Mario or Final Fantasy sequels, that kind of innovation and marketing braverycounts for a lot.

The best thing about the PC version of the game is that it’s quite obviously how the game was meant to be played too. The thumbstick-driven console versions are OK, but the contrast between the slow, clumsy controls and the precise, speedy gameplay can be quite jarring. That’s not a problem when you’re wielding a keyboard and mouse. On the PC you feel more a part of the game than ever before as you rush through the white-and-red-and-green hallways of the game with blistering speed.

There’s no escaping the fact that Mirror’s Edge has flaws – clunky combat and a stunning brevity being the principal offenders, but they aren’t enough to stop us (or you) from voting it as one of the best games of the year in terms of originality and vision.
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