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Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality

Maze Theory, Just Add Water, Another Indie, Neon Doctrine
Oct 14, 2021 - Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, PC

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Critics Recommend

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Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality Trailers

Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality - launch trailer thumbnail

Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality - launch trailer

Doctor Who: The Edge Of Reality - Teaser Trailer thumbnail

Doctor Who: The Edge Of Reality - Teaser Trailer

Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality Screenshots

Critic Reviews for Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality

Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality is an improvement on the original release, but it suffers from weak visuals on the Switch.

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Doctor Who doesn’t work without those three things - it’s a fairly bog-standard sci-fi show at the end of the day, but it’s mine and many’s favourites because of the Doctor. The Doctor is the show’s edge, a lovable idiot that’s too smart for their own good tying everything together, ending up in random situations and being forced to interact with strangers to uncover plots of intrigue. We do none of that here. You go to A, do what you’re told, go to B, do what you’re told, until the game ends. Given how short it is, you’re better off watching a few episodes from the show, because this is barely Doctor Who, let alone a good game.

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If you can’t tell, I didn’t like Doctor Who: Edge of Reality in this iteration. Had I played this in VR I think some of my issues would have been resolved, but the mistreatment of both Doctors is quite unforgivable and would be a huge issue in either version of the game. While I think it is almost as hard to make a good Doctor Who game as it is to make a good Star Trek game, I appreciate that studios keep trying different things… but this ain’t it bruh.

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David Tennant does infuse this story with a lot of life in the short time he’s featured, and a particular end sequence set on a cybership sets the pulse racing by tapping into the show’s mild horror. However, neither detract from the original experience’s flaws. The chief appeal of playing in VR was being able to immerse yourself into an episode, and even that has now been lost in translation.

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A bijou Doctor Who experience, Edge of Reality is impressively dedicated to the beloved TV show but unfortunately suffers in its transition from VR exclusive to traditional console game. Limited inputs and fetch-questy scenarios hardly inflame the imagination and it's not until the game's last quarter that things start to feel more tailored for the Switch - because they are. It's too short and there aren't enough clear save points (we lost a fair amount of progress when we quit during the first area to play something else and it simply hadn't saved the game yet) but the fact that performance is so all over the place is Edge of Reality's main issue, and one that will absolutely affect your enjoyment of an otherwise serviceable adventure. Overall, it's the most cautious of recommendations to Doctor Who fans, then. Everyone else almost certainly need not apply.

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My love of Doctor Who could not compel me to play another minute of this game. It feels like an extremely lazy conversion from VR to console game. It's sloppy, frustrating, and for three hours of this mess, not worth the download in its current state.

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Overall, Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality is an excellent vision improperly executed for non-VR systems. Dedicated fans of the Doctor Who franchise will enjoy becoming one of the Doctor’s Companions, despite the eventual headaches that transpire from forced restarts. The journey’s story could be enjoyable with a few polishes, which Maze Theory and Just Add Water will hopefully add with future updates, but as it stands now, only those desperate for an adventure with the Doctor should pick up Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality.

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Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality should have been one of those games where you really feel like The Doctor, but a half-hearted VR walking simulator working with only references to please long-time fans, feels like a huge missed opportunity and a reminder of why Doctor Who doesn’t get that many game releases, no matter which incarnation of The Doctor you like.

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