Mirror’s Edge Catalyst
When the original Mirror’s Edge debuted back in 2011, it garnered widespread popularity thanks to its unique first person parkour gameplay. Despite the mixed critical reception, its novel gameplay, in combination a sleek urban dystopian setting and interesting narrative, went on to amass somewhat of a cult following. Certainly, Mirror’s Edge had piqued enough interest to warrant a sequel title that should have made big improvements to the original.
On paper, Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst looked very promising; an expanded open world setting, a rebooted storyline and polished parkour gameplay that did away with a first person shooting entirely. Everything seemed in place for the franchise to realize its potential, and the sequel was expected to rectify many of the issues that were considered mere teething problems for the original. Sadly, that simply hasn’t been the case, as Catalyst makes only moderate improvements to its predecessor and its larger game environment creates more problems than it solves.
Parkour is all about freedom of movement, and to facilitate that concept effectively Mirror’s Edge Catalyst incorporates a far more expansive open world design than the original game. But frustratingly, instead of fleshing that open world out with meaningful side quests and activities, the majority of gameplay still boils down to simply running from point A to point B. Traversal might be Catalyst’s core gameplay mechanic, but there has to be more interesting ways of implementing that ability without feeling over repetitive.
What’s more, Catalyst’s urban environment is both dull and uninspiring, featuring little in the way of memorable landmarks. That wouldn’t be so bad if the game ran butter smooth, but poor texture quality, especially on console, spoils its aesthetic.
If you’re a fan of the series, then you’ll no doubt still enjoy the experience, but we still can’t get over wondering what could have been for Mirror’s Edge.
For more on what we thought, be sure to check out our full review.