Disco Elysium: The Final Cut

Disco Elysium: The Final Cut

released on Mar 30, 2021
by ZA/UM

Disco Elysium: The Final Cut

released on Mar 30, 2021
by ZA/UM

An expanded game of Disco Elysium

Disco Elysium: The Final Cut is a groundbreaking role playing game. You’re a detective with a unique skill system at your disposal and a whole city to carve your path across. Interrogate unforgettable characters, crack murders or take bribes. Become a hero or an absolute disaster of a human being. The Final Cut adds full voice acting to the game, as well as new quests, more characters and fresh explorable areas.

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The Final Cut

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All time favorite game. Multiple plot points made me teary, and I still know there's so many little trails I missed. Absolutely worth replaying and worth the hype

Altogether, I would describe gaming as a rather unpretentious medium, as most story-driven games are too busy wearing their hearts on their sleeves to be considered pretentious. This is something of a disappointment for me, because I love pretentious things. Absolutely adore them. I find that people who are a little too confident in what they're trying to say often will find fascinating ways to say them. If that fascination happens to also come with a little bit of ego-stroking, then so be it. And dear reader, let me tell you, Disco Elysium has all the pretentious flaire of a 1970s rock opera. You cannot possibly convince me that “evil apes dukin’ out on a giant ball” was a sentence written by someone who didn't think they were being at least a little bit clever while they were doing so, nor can you convince me that Disco Elysium isn't all the better for it. Disco Elysium is a pioneer in the field of pretentious video games, and more games ought to follow in its example.

Disco Elysium is also home to some absolutely stellar worldbuilding. The murder mystery the game ostensibly focuses on is less so the game's main concern and more so an excuse for the game to explore various socio-political ideas through the characters involved in and events leading up to the murder. The way the game then takes real world political ideologies and seamlessly weaves them into the context of its fictional world's history is a sight to behold. I can't claim to have fully picked up on all of it, but I know strong commentary when I see it.

Unfortunately, it is that strong worldbuilding and political commentary that leads me to my main complaint regarding Disco Elysium, which is that it wasn't always clear to me how exactly my choices impacted the narrative. The game opens with a large array of stats to distribute points between and seems to put on emphasis on role playing Harry how you think he should act, but apart from a couple of Thoughts and quests exclusive to the Final Cut version of the game, it never really felt like the way I chose to role play Harry had a massive impact on the world itself. I don't have a problem with linearity by itself, but when you try to present linearity as non-linearity, it becomes harder for me to fully immerse myself. I respect the game's commitment to being basically a visual novel, in the most literal sense of the term, but in this case, I don't think it would've hurt too much to lean into its gamier elements and include an alignment meter or something.

Also—and these technical complaints don't actually affect my opinion on the game itself, but they need to be mentioned—the Switch port of this game is extremely unpolished. Frame rate drops to a halt during autosaves, incorrect voice lines will occasionally load in, the audio quality of the voice lines are all over the place, and to top it all off, my game soflocked a solid three or four times and crashed to the home screen another three times on top of that. This is not a graphically intensive game, it really should not run this poorly.

One of my favorite moments in gaming was when I was playing Fallout 2, and you need to get somewhere so you ask whose allowed in. The guy says the "cleaning crew is allowed" and then you say you are the crew to get in, to which he immediately calls you out for just now learning this information and not even being there at the right time. Disco Elysium is 15 hours of nothing but this wonderful microcosm of dialogue.

Oks parhaimmist visual noveleist ikinä

This is high key the best visual novel I've ever read but these reviews are more skewed than Evrart Claire's business policies.

I'm sure it's better but I genuinely couldn't get into it and it's style of writing. I might've liked it more on a console