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Mirror's Edge review

AT A GLANCE
  • Incredible chases
  • New way of playing games
  • Fresh, vivid look
  • Slow parts are weak
  • Disarming feels imprecise
  • Gunplay feels awkward and wrong

To say Mirror’s Edge is about running and jumping is a bit like saying that Call of Duty 4 is about shooting bullets: about as subtle as a truck in the face and, while undeniably true, missing out the really important things that make it so great. This game is different. How? Well, it’s a first person title that’s not solely focused on guns, for a start. It’s sort of an anti-shooter – it takes the basic shape and feel of an FPS but then ditches the hammering destruction and fury and instead goes all out for elegance and style. But it still does guns pretty well, if you want them.

The premise here is that you’re Faith, resident of an ominously sanitized near-future city. Political corruption and police brutality are masked by the metropolis’ uncompromising Arctic clean lines and an ice-cube skyline of stark white tower blocks. Troublesome elements have been forced underground – among them criminals, free-thinking intellectuals and, apparently, acrobats. Because as one of the city’s covert network of runners, couriering packages of important information away from the heavily monitored regular channels, Faith is impossibly athletic, sure-footed and fast; picking routes over rooftops, scurrying across walls and sliding secretly through the impeccable metropolis almost effortlessly. Sounds easy, right?

But that’s the first thing to make clear: Mirror’s Edge really works. It actually feels like you’re running – or jumping, or shimmying, or skidding. This game’s closest relations, in terms of ideas, are probably Prince of Persia and Tomb Raider, both of which give you an easy time keeping in touch with the position of your character because you can always see them. The crucial thing with Mirror’s Edge’s leap from third to first person is that you maintain that sense of which bits of you are where, thanks to the motion of the screen and the way arms and legs occasionally cross your vision – and therefore you know what to do with them next.

It helps that the controls are so simple. Based on basic up or down commands, they’re context sensitive (it’s OK, this works too), so pressing the “upward movement” button makes you go up for jumps, wall runs, skipping over fences and the “downward movement” button does the opposite: helping you slide under obstacles, nail smooth landings or drop from ledges. There’s other stuff as well – a button to activate the odd switch or key and another to turn 180 degrees – but it’s the intuition of going over or under that lets you get on with the really important thing: going as fast as possible without stopping.

More Info

Release date: Jan 13 2009 - PC
Nov 11 2008 - Xbox 360, PS3 (US)
Nov 14 2008 - Xbox 360, PS3 (UK)
Available Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PS3
Genre: Action
Published by: EA GAMES
Developed by: DICE
ESRB Rating:
Teen: Blood, Language, Violence
PEGI Rating:
16+

25 comments

  • Darkhawk - October 6, 2011 9:03 a.m.

    The combat in this game is so unequivocally awful, I strongly suggest setting the difficulty to easy. It has no effect on the good stuff - platforming remains platforming, after all - but you can take a few more hits and it's quicker to dispatch the bloody annoying enemies.
  • barrage7667 - December 6, 2008 7 p.m.

    omg if u dont want to play a game cause ur a girl u got issues...thts sexist and messed up... wouldnt u be pissed of a girl wouldnt play a good game cause u were the star? exactly
  • radioedit420 - November 27, 2008 10:12 p.m.

    Why are people hating on playing as girls in games? Although if it was a barbie or brittany spears kind of girl, i wouldn't even be playing it.
  • crazyqazqaz - November 23, 2008 5:54 p.m.

    This looks pretty cool. I might give it a shot.
  • Defguru7777 - November 16, 2008 11:45 p.m.

    I wish my Internet was faster so that I could at least download the demo!
  • Z-man427 - November 14, 2008 5:29 a.m.

    so glad to see that this is good
  • HotSht95 - November 12, 2008 11:05 p.m.

    id play if u didnt have to be a chick and if i didnt have gears 2 and if i was on crack
  • purpleshirt - November 11, 2008 9:20 p.m.

    so it sounds like the better you are at the game the more fun it is... that sounds good to me
  • dorrick - December 1, 2008 10:58 p.m.

    crazyhaz; let me guess you're the type of guy that plays games because of gore and to feel better about the life you live outside of gaming. This game is amazing anyone that has any kind of artistic or really just not into gore and a good story line will like this game. It is a rental because of no multiplayer but this game is genre bending and the first of its kind. The music is great and the controls work perfectly. Anyone that is mad about playing as a girl really needs to get out more i mean seriously. Games weren't just made for men and i like this because it gets my girlfriend into it more and ive been trying to get my girl into gaming for awhile.
  • crazyhaz - November 20, 2008 9:08 p.m.

    Hey Guys and Gals.. I have just registered to GamesRadar to tell you all how TERRIBLE Mirrors Edge is!!! It has to be one of the most boring games i have ever played. I recommend anyone seriously wanting to buy this game, RENT it FIRST!! Looks can be deceiving and in this case THEY ARE! I have just traded in FarCry2 which was awesome but i completed it and this game caught my eye... mainly for the looks and the idea of free running, which sounded great. GamesRadar gave this an 8 out 10. i'd give it 5.. if that. Terribly disappointed!!!!!!!
  • Nitemarish - November 18, 2008 8:18 p.m.

    I'd get it, but WTF?! £46.93 on Amazon?!?! EA piss me off so much
  • R38P3R - November 13, 2008 12:50 a.m.

    this game is ok, could have been better.
  • doug-e-fresh - November 12, 2008 10:33 p.m.

    I'm soo glad that this game is good. It's so often that a game that seems promising or more importantly a game i wanna play turns out bad.
  • bron1417 - November 11, 2008 9:08 p.m.

    well well the hype for this game has been lived im going to get this really soon.
  • lnksmartt - November 11, 2008 5:24 p.m.

    I thought this game would be good, not great but good
  • lnksmartt - November 11, 2008 5:23 p.m.

    I'm going to play this game for free and I'm glad for it.
  • BertTheTurtle - August 27, 2009 10:27 p.m.

    If for whatever reason you don't have the DLC yet, I recommend it, some real great fun there.
  • sk8tingninjainda206 - July 4, 2009 1:11 a.m.

    i free run and i love it so much and then i saw this game and i didn't even know that there was a game like this. it looks super sweet.
  • legodude666 - March 30, 2009 3:24 a.m.

    To all the people that refuse to play this because your a girl, honestly grow up. Not every game has to be about a meathead wearing half of your mom's SUV as body armor and preforming amputations via shotgun. I'm not hating on Gears or the like, but doesn't it bore you after a while?
  • NiftyNinja - March 28, 2009 6:46 p.m.

    to keep it plain and simple i think the game is gonna be tha shiz...chick and all.

Showing 1-20 of 25 comments

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