The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena
Assault on Dark Athena is like getting two games for the price eof one, especially if you haven’t played the original Escape for Butcher’ Bay, because a graphically amped up version of the game is included on the same disc and Dark Athena.
Though Butcher’s Bay holds it own quite well for an old game with new makeup, I’m going to focus on Dark Athena. Probably the coolest thing about the whole game is that you get to play the iconic character Riddick. It’s mix of stealth and first person shooter, as Riddick loves the shadows.
“They say hope begins in the dark… The darkness, for me, is where I shine.”
The darkness is Riddick’s friend, his special night eyes literally shine in the dark corners of Dark Athena, and to get the most out of this game you’re going to have to learn patience. This isn’t a fast paced first person shooter; in fact the game seems weighted towards stealth kills rather than filling your enemies with lead.
Visually the game is a treat, and the game flows nicely, though the way Riddick sees the world may take a little getting used to. Figuring out where to go can sometimes be a problem, but if you get too far off track, a little help icon sometimes appears to get you back on track. Some times it’s a case of looking carefully for what you may have missed.
It’s here that Dark Athena’s main problems lie, and it’s not really the fault of the games designers. Dark Athena by its very nature is a very linear game. You have to go here and do this, so that you can go here and do that, so you can go back and move forward. As frustrating as this can be at times, the alternative; an open ‘sandbox’ style of play would probably see people getting lost in the sameness of the spaceships corridors.
As it is, the linear approach is the curse of gaming, but a necessary one, and putting it’s quirks and frustrations aside, Dark Athena does a great job of delivering the Riddick experience. Throw in the updated version of Butcher’s Bay and you have a great game with awesome added value, you really can’t go wrong.
Reviewed By: Jonathan Read