I’m not really one to shy away from making particularly strange comparisons that people wouldn’t often immediately pick up on so that’s part of the reason for this blog. The other reason is pure and simple nostalgia more than likely. I’ve been doing some experimentation with other new and recent games out there and finally stepping out of my well-worn niche of role-playing and shooter games (as of late anyway). So of course my first step was to boot up titles such as Nex Machina and Get Even among others, seeing as they’re two recent games that have had interesting reviews and concepts in equal measure.
Which brings me to my exact purpose in regard to why I’m writing this particular post: Get Even and its striking thematic similarities to Perfect Dark (particularly Perfect Dark Zero). Beyond the easy to sense similarities- both are action oriented first person shooters or from a first person perspective and both feature a heavy load of futuristic technology, there are some other interesting connections of sorts as well.
First things first, let’s just go ahead and discuss what Get Even is (relatively spoiler free mind you) and how it isn’t exactly related to Perfect Dark’s prelude. As best as I can possibly describe it, Get Even is an intriguing mix of thriller meets psychological horror and first person shooter or action. It’s an eclectic mixture at best and yet somehow that works? Honestly I’m just as surprised as anyone considering the amount of narrative twisting and turning along the way and the relatively low influence of the gameplay itself on how things play out. It’s certainly quite the experiment and we’re not the only ones intrigued by it surely.
In my mind, Perfect Dark Zero is one of those games that doesn’t exactly live up to what nostalgia would otherwise lead us to believe- it’s awesome as far as multiplayer might be concerned but the campaign itself is horrendous by today’s standards and lacks checkpoints in favor of “difficulty.” All of my personal thoughts aside, what the game certainly is would be a first person shooter and action hybrid with some interesting narrative ties and influences beyond the control of the player characters (Joanna Dark) themselves. So where’s that leave us as far as simple common ground can be ascertained?
The interesting dynamic between the characters and the twists of the plot and uncovered revelations and mutations of that story over time are what makes me draw the biggest connections with Get Even and Perfect Dark. As the name would suggest, there’s somewhat a sense of seeking vengeance or at the very least reprieve in the first of those titles while the latter is more of an enigmatic name unless you’ve previously played the series. Names won’t explain any connection for certain however in this case. However it is important to note that- without going into exact details on the narrative of either title, the ever changing nature of the plot and more importantly the player’s perception of that plot and its integral events and pieces is the most unique comparison that can be made.
Get Even deals heavily with context and also with literal memories and experiences. Likewise, Perfect Dark Zero deals heavily in plot progression through experiences with and around other supporting characters. Both titles also heavily rely upon things that happen to these characters in order to push the boundaries of the story and to tug at the fabric or concept of reality and stability in those respective games. Simply put, the reason why I thought of Perfect Dark Zero first when I tried to wrack my brain for a game that Get Even reminded me of comes down to the fundamental information slowly leaked to me throughout my playtime: something is amiss, something is subject to change thanks to what happens to these characters surrounding me (and of course my actions could prevent or cause this calamitous action and consequence).
Furthermore, despite the time gap between the settings of each game as well as the representation of each world, I can’t help but shake the feeling in other instances they could even potentially exist side by side. The technology and potentiality and possibilities on the whole convince me of that fact at times. A guy can dream that everything is in some way connected or related right? Regardless, these are just some very late night or perhaps entirely too early morning musings. Cheers.