Life or Deathloop


Arkane Studios is back with another first person shooter, but Deathloop brings something new to the gaming table. It’s removing autosave. Instead of an eliminate reward system, Deathloop is about panic and improvisation, a roaring clockwork machine of continuous resets.

You play as Colt, a gunslinger with amnesia who wakes up on the cold shores of Blackreef with no knowledge on the amount of time he’s been looping. Your objective, kill 8 targets known as visionaries before the day ends. If they aren’t killed by the end of the day, all 8 targets are resurrected and you begin again. This concept seems demanding, but that’s the whole gist of it. Instead of sticking to the copy paste format of first person shooters, Deathloop balances complexity with strategy to challenge the player’s ability in finding tactical ways out of the looped system. 

Blackreefs levels are split into four time periods, morning, noon, afternoon and night in which the player can choose the period they want to play in, your targets spread across each period at certain locations. Killing your targets before the day runs out seems impossible, but as you continue to explore each time period, you’ll notice small details which help you kill enemies. Windows which only open at certain times of the day and a pond in the morning which freezes at night assists you in neutralizing enemies quicker. 

The player authored experience is rooted in the playstyle. Heavy weapons allow players to spray Blackreef’s walls with the colours of your targets, whereas silent pistols can be used for a stealth playthrough. Once you kill a target, you can collect their powers which harmonize with your gameplay. For those going sneaky, invisibility and teleportation allows you to go behind enemies for a silent kill, whereas levitation lets you repeatedly slam enemies into walls. Through experimentation, players will be able to find their deck for a perfect loop. 

All in all, Deathloops immersive sim attributes give the game a strong replayable quality. Although the repeats become frustrating, it encourages players to adopt and experiment with tactical approaches, heightening the satisfaction of successfully grouping enemies and orchestrating swift kills. Arkanes approach of non linear levels mixed with different playstyles gives the player flexibility to improve their gameplay, giving an immense sense of satisfaction when the perfect loop is achieved.