Impressions: The Order: 1886 from the PlayStation Experience

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I’ve had the opportunity to follow the progress of The Order: 1886 since my first look at it back in February of this year, and again when I finally got to play it at E3. Now, here at the PlayStation Experience, I was able to play a decent chunk of the game (probably about 30 minutes), and I’m even more enamored with it than before. Controls have tightened, visuals have gotten surprisingly better, and the variety of gameplay keeps things fresh.

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The demo I played today started with the 4 knights on top of a dirigible, which they infiltrated by rappelling along the side and down into the belly of the ship. The team broke up, with your charge being that of taking the bridge with the help of Lafayette. The name of the game in this section is stealth, as you both skulk along the framework of the airship, making sure not to be spotted by the guards. A magnetic lock blocks your way to a ladder, so you connect an odd device to it, which if you do things right, will knock the circuit out. There are 2 clear, vertical tubes, each with a ball going up and down. You’ll need to stop each ball separately in a small zone within each tube, using L3 and R3. Once they’re stopped, you continue to hold both until the lock shorts out. A guard notices something wrong, and begins to check the issue out, giving you the opportunity to sneak-up behind him and silently end his patrol (permanently.) A stealth kill is contextual, requiring you to hit a button at a specific time. If you do it wrong though, he’ll hear you and well, things don’t end well.

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As you move forward to the bridge, you toss a smoke bomb in first to distract the guys manning the controls. And when you break in, things slow down and the combat again becomes contextual, sort of a light QTE but much more interactive. I hit a wrong button at one point, and had to quickly use the right stick to find something to aid in my survival. I see a fire extinguisher and quickly slam my attacker’s head into it, then grab the object from the wall to use as a battering ram on his head.

Once the bridge is liberated, I need to head back to the main hall, again using stealth to either get past the guards, or of course, sneaking up behind them to stab with extreme prejudice. As I entered the main hall, I needed to use a scope on a sniper rifle to ascertain if any of the guards were actually rebels in disguise. Once identified, you’re ordered to take them out before they get the chance to assassinate someone important (which I failed the first time lol). Once you help protect him while the real guards get him out of danger, the rebels start filing-in and you’ll need to take them out. The action is frenzied, especially since you’re dealing with weapons in the late 1800’s. Accuracy isn’t king with these ancient guns, making you rethink how you engage in gunfights. Amazingly, they’ve really tightened the controls in these sections as compared to when I played a build at E3, and man it was really fun! Go into cover using Circle, and pull away quite effortlessly. Get close enough o an enemy, and you’ll be able to melee using Triangle, if your timing is good enough of course.

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There’s more, but I don’t want to give too much away. I will say though, that this is quickly moving up my most wanted list. The visuals have gotten even better, and they’re ratcheting the framerate up nicely. The entire game looks like a cutscene though, and as described before, the move from cutscene to gameplay is absolutely seamless. Ready at Dawn’s efforts to bringing us a cinematic epic are being realized nicely, and the gameplay is matching that brilliance. I couldn’t stop smiling as I played, even when I screwed something up. It’s a visual tour de force with the gameplay to match, and for me, the more modern re-imagining of the Knights of the Round Table lore is something that hits every beat with me.

You won’t believe that the visuals are in realtime when you see it, and as you move through the game, you’ll probably still have some doubts. I can’t wait to get the full game, and luckily, that opportunity is getting closer.

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Written by Glenn Percival

Glenn Percival

Just a guy that loves games, movies, Golf, Football, and Baseball.

Podcast Co-Host, Editor-in-Chief, Video Producer, and whipping-boy

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  • This game always seems so far away. But from what they showed at PSX, it still looks impressive. Can’t wait.

  • Darth-Cruncher

    Is this SP only? As I think the fantasy world would be fantastic as a MP game

    • London Rhodes

      I don’t think Ready at Dawn has ever done MP before. Actually this might be there first console game. I’d be a tad bit skeptical of the quality of MP mode.

  • London Rhodes

    Third person action is my favorite genre. That being said I really want this to be more than just another third person shooter. With Uncharted 4 looming on the horizon, I think anything else is gonna be overshadowed in the genre.

    • Darth-Cruncher

      TBH I prefer single player games such as Uncharted & TLoU (for a game experience); but the MP is well done in their games.