When Mirror's Edge debuted back in 2008, it got a huge amount of praise for its innovative way of updating the platform genre and taking full advantage of the parkour craze.
Nobody's really sure why it's taken a total of eight years to get a sequel for Mirror's Edge, but here we are nonetheless. The problems that almost everyone had with Mirror's Edge are still the same problems here; namely, that it's a good idea but the execution is all wrong. Not only that, there aren't enough updates or upgrades here to warrant investing your time into it again because it's the same resultant - good, not great.
As before, you play Faith, a runner living in a futuristic city known only as Glass. Mega-corporations now rule the world and everyone is tagged, identified and working to contribute to the great society. But, sure enough, there are those - aren't there always? - who want to live outside the systems of control. The game opens with Faith being released from prison and learning to run again, with the help of her fellow runners. From there, the story progresses into the usual array of side-mission, story missions and so on.
As with Mirror's Edge, the object of the game is to get from Point A to Point B in the fastest, most elaborate way possible. The gameplay is much the same here and adds in a combat system to help you out of stick situations. If you can get over the relatively steep learning curve having never played the game before, there's a good bit of fun to be had. You'll find yourself leaping over gaps between buildings and dashing across rooftops with ease, but it's when you slow down - or are forced to slow down - that the game's many faults become apparent.
The designs for the NPCs looked almost like they were designed for the previous system whilst the environment design, although beautifully realised, does begin to become repetitive. Likewise, the gameplay itself boils down to the same thing over and over again, fetch and deliver, fetch and deliver - even with the new open-world exploration element added to the game. The side missions, which can be found by heading off the beaten track, aren't all that interesting and the overall plot and story is so daft that you don't really feel all that invested in the world.
It's a shame because you'd be forgiven for thinking that with eight years of a gap between the two games, there'd be something more than this. Expectations were high for Mirror's Edge: Catalyst, but there's not enough here to warrant anyone except die-hard fans of the previous game to fork out for.
Platforms: Xbox One / PlayStation 4
Developer / Publisher: EA DICE / EA