Mirror's Edge Catalyst
Your enjoyment of Mirror's Edge: Catalyst will depend greatly on how willing you are to accept its flaws. The load times can be a pain to deal with, there's not much of an inclination to take on side-quests, and the combat doesn't seem to have improved much from the first game, despite the abandonment of firearms. At the same time, the idea of a platforming-heavy, first-person game remains intriguing, and your moves and the layout of the city make the running aspect one of the more legitimately enjoyable parts of the title. Though it may not appeal to all players, those looking for something a bit different will enjoy one more go-round in Faith's shoes.
Mirror's Edge Catalyst resolves the biggest issues of its forbearer and remains enjoyable thanks to strong core mechanics, and despite a weak narrative and uninteresting open world content.
I won't be going into spoiler territory but it's clear that the best thing Mirror's Edge Catalyst has going for it is the core gameplay mechanics. When they work (which in all fairness is the majority of the time) then the parkour style of movement is a ton of fun and makes you feel like a badass.
A radical city in a failed system
Forgetting about the repetitiveness and lifelessness of the environments for a moment, it's clear that there's strong art design behind it all, combining clean lines with bold colours to create a world that feels clinical, cool and futuristic
The gameplay is fast paced and fun if it weren't for the slow battle system. I can imagine the game eight years ago being a unique game that's so different from others, but this sequel is only a redo of the same ideas that adds no value even with the Open World element, but it will suit those who never tried the first game.
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As much passion as I had for the continuation of the Mirror's Edge franchise, it seems like DICE has effectively robbed all of the wind from my sails. Though the game is fine as a mediocre playable experience, many of the things that made the original so special have been neutered beyond repair.
We've been waiting a long time for another Mirror's Edge game, and we finally have it with Catalyst. While the storyline is quite predictable with dull characters, the gameplay is where it truly shines. The movement feels fluid, the time trials and social integration allows for replayability.
The first 'Mirror's Edge' was a surprising risk with interesting gameplay that developed a niche audience, and its follow-up tries, mostly successfully, to recapture that same effect. There are stumbles with its open world, combat, and narrative, but Faith's freerunning world persists. Chasing after every red zipline, railing, and air duct is still fun eight years on.
Mirror's Edge Catalyst isn't a perfect return of the 2008 cult classic and that's okay. If you're looking for a free-running romp through a city ruled by shady corporations backed up by slick controls and navigation, you can't go wrong. As long as your expectations are in check in terms of its open-world what with many a game sporting one, you'll be fine.