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From game publisher Bethesda and developer Arkane Studios comes “Dishonored”, a linear action first person game that delivers intrigue and mystery with high quality graphics. The plot of “Dishonored” centers on Corvo Attano, the body guard of Jessamine, the Empress of the city of Dunwall, located on the island of Gristol. Gristol is a technological wonder that is able to function from the slaughter of whales for their oil. The inventions created by the celebrated scientist, Anton Sokolov, are mostly used to keep the poor in line while a plague rampages across the city.
Corvo was sent to the neighboring islands of Gristol by Jessamine to see if any cure for the plague was to be found. The city is overrun by plague victims called “Weepers,” and one of the first signs that one has contracted the plague is blood pouring from the eyes. Once contracted, the plague robs the victim of their faculties and they attack anyone on sight. As he delivers word from the neighboring states, the Empress is murdered before his and Emily’s (her daughter) eyes. He is branded as a traitor and murderer of the Empress and is sentenced to be executed. The player is then in control of Corvo’s fate as this tale of murder, betrayal, love and consequences unravel.
“Dishonored” is for the gamer who enjoys stealth as well as action with a dose of drama at times, enhanced by various lethal weapons and supernatural powers. Think of “BioShock,” except instead of incinerating with fire, you can conjure a rat swarm to devour your enemies at will. These powers are given to you by the mysterious “god” of the world, The Outsider, who is the bane of the Overseers. People who worship him are punished by the Overseers with harsh punishments, including death, depending on how loyal they are to The Outsider.
Throughout the game The Outsider bestows more power to you through every Rune and Bone Charm you collect. Runes are made from whale bones and are gifted with direct power from The Outsider. The player uses Runes to upgrade their powers. Bone Charms on the other hand come predisposed with set abilities and randomly generate within each level so that every play through will grant different Bone Charms at different times. For example, a Bone Charm might grant you the power to possess white rats for a longer period of time, while another can grant you health regeneration from drinking out of faucets.
When Corvo comes across an Outsider shrine, a new ability may be bestowed on him and The Outsider will speak, either about Corvo’s progress, or about a certain situation he finds amusing. The Outsider is the most intriguing character of the game as his “gifts” are clearly linked to Gristol’s slaughter and consumption of whale oil.
In Part 2 we will dissect Corvo’s abilities and see if the “chaos meter” enhances the gameplay of “Dishonored”.