The Dark Pictures Anthology: Man of Medan

released on Aug 29, 2019

Enter the world of The Dark Pictures - A series of standalone cinematic horror games. Players will be challenged to explore and uncover each story with the knowledge that all their choices have consequences and all playable characters can live, any and all can die...

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Claramente inferior a lo que se venía gestando con el anterior título del estudio, pero sigue siendo divertido. El final es anticlimático (y eso que conseguí que sobrevivieran todos los personajes).

most incomplete game of all fucking time but i had fun riffing on it w my buddy rose

Fun but not terribly good in retrospect

E legal jogar de dois players mas isso aí qualquer jogo e legal co-op.
O problema de jogar na mesma tela e que vc já sabe quem morreu ou não então os momentos alucinação não funciona, salvei todo mundo pq eu sabia quem tava onde e quando.
A história e meio meh mas foi divertido.

Played on PS5 via PS Plus
Also Available on PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X and PC
Playtime: 20 Hours
Completion Date: July 1 2022
No Spoilers
The Dark Pictures Anthology's first game Man of Medan is an interactive horror movie that released back in 2019. It's developed by Supermassive Games and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment.
Our story is about 5 characters. 4 divers and a boat captain they hired to go and investigate a wreck. During their trip, they bump into an old ship. Inside the ship, weird things are going on. Many people are dead, there are strange creatures, so they investigate to find out what happened.
Don't worry, i gave you no spoilers and actually, maybe i lied a little to give you no spoilers. Anyway, i really liked the story. Supermassive previously did Until Dawn and the story structure here is pretty much the same. There is a shocking prologue, then there is the phase where you get to know the characters and the relationships between them and then there is of course the jumpscare filled horror phase.
Unfortunately, the phase where you get to know the characters is too long. The game is around 4-5 hours in your first playthrough. If you play solo. And 2 hours of that is the meeting phase. Unfortunately this will definitely eliminate some players if they decide to do a second playthrough. It might even kill some people's first playthrough.
Like Until Dawn, there is a twist here. And like Until Dawn, i liked it. You might predict it early in the game because there are lots of clues but i didn't. Characters are, fine. Shawn Ashmore's Conrad is definitely the best of them. Conrad is funny and charming but also brave and smart when it's necessary. Ayisha Issa's Fliss was the other standout amongst the 5 characters for me.
Fliss is the captain of the boat and in the beginning of the game, she and the divers has a tension between them. Depending on your choices, that tension can grow bigger or it can go away completely. Other characters are not bad but my favourites were Conrad and Fliss.
So the story is great and characters are fine. Let's move on to the gameplay. There are 3 things you will do in Man of Medan. Walking and searching the environment, listening to the dialogues and choosing a response and finally, quick time events.
Dialogues aren't amazing but they get the job done. Choices are good and i felt like they changed important things. Every single one of your 5 controllable characters can die depending on your choices and that's a great tension that i feel should be featured in every choice based, narrative focused game. Though sometimes, your choices are not so clear. This is not an issue in the action sequence choices. They are simple like "Run, Hide, Attack or Jump".
But while talking to the other characters, i sometimes selected a choice, and the response i got was way different then what i was expecting. Quick Time Events are a classic in these types of games. They are important and not knowing when they will come will make sure you hold that controller in your hand all the time.
There is one quick time event though called "Keep Calm." There is a line and blue heartbeat areas are coming to the line. When the line is in that area, you need to press X(for PS5). That's not the issue.
The issue is that during these Stay Calm's, there is something interesting going on in the background. A character is moving, talking, attacking, shouting. And there are some minor frame drops here and there. Both of these messes up the rythm and unfortunately, one of my characters got killed because of one of these Keep Calm segments. I did not keep calm when the character died.
Finally, there is the walking and exploring segments. Walking is a bit slow at times. I liked the fixed camera angles. When you are exploring, there is not much action so yeah, sometimes when the camera angles change, you will lose control of your character. But that won't have any repercussions to the game. I think the fixed camera angles deepens the horror feeling.
The ship's design is not too interesting but there are some interesting rooms. There are also collectibles. I highly recommend you to collect as much as you can because they will give you new information about the story and what's going on in the ship, which will definitely help your quest of trying to get all the characters alive. Though maybe you want to kill all of them, it's possible.
There are the usual collectibles like photos, notes and journals. But there are also these drawings. Pictures. These will show a vision from a future point in the game. Supposedly, these will help you making better decisions. It did not help me. At all. It was nice knowing one of many possibilities for the future but i did not learn anything interesting from these that i then used while choosing stuff.
There is a nice menu called the bearings. This will show you the connection between the choices you make. Throughout the game, new bearings will be added and already added ones will be updated. Remembering the decisions you made and connecting them with the decision you just made was great.
There is also a menu where you can see the traits of your character and that character's relationship level with other characters. These were nice to look at but i felt like they did not impact my game at all. There were some minor differences but you might miss it even if you play the game like 3,4 times. You might notice something about these in your 10th playthrough. Which is not great because many people won't play this game that many times.
Speaking of playing again, replayability is an important thing for these choice based games. And Man of Medan has tons of replayability. There are 2 cuts and 3 modes for the game. Let's start with the cuts. Theatrical Cut is what you will play in your first playthrough.
Curator's Cut is an alternate version of that. I already talked about 2 characters i liked. Conrad and Fliss. Let's say you played as Conrad in one scene from Theatrical Cut. You will play the same scene again in Curator's Cut as well but this time, as Fliss. And you will see different choices. Sometimes, different scenes.
I recommend everyone to play the game at least 2 times. Once in Theatrical, once in Curator's Cut. You can download Curator's Cut for free from the digital store you play the game on. There are also 3 modes. Solo story is simple. You play through the game alone and you can select both cuts.
Movie Night is the local Co-Op mode. Again, you can select both cuts. In the start of movie night, you will assign characters to each player, up to 4 players. And once the character switches, the game will show you a screen saying give the controller to Player X. It's a nice way to experience the game for sure.
But the best way to experience the game is in Shared Story. Online Co-Op mode. In this mode, you won't select a cut. The game will decide which player plays which cut in every scene. And it will change. If you are Player 1 for example, you won't just play the Theatrical Cut. You will play scenes both from Theatrical and Curator.
You and your online partner will sometimes see different scenes. Sometimes you will be in the same scene, exploring the same locations. Me and my friend told each other what we saw if we got separated. And it was a blast trying to tell what i saw and trying to imagine what he saw. If possible, i highly recommend a blind, online Co-Op playthrough first.
Before we end the review, here is some technical details. I played this on a PS5 and like i said, there were some frame drops. Really minor but those that happened during quick time events hurt the experience. This game doesn't have a native PS5 version so there is no PS5 features like faster load times, haptic feedback, adaptive triggers or 3D Audio.
The game does look good. Faces especially. Though sometimes they also look like mannequins. There weren't many bugs though there was one hilarious bug. One of our characters died and then we had a connection problem. It was on me, on my internet. It came back shortly after and we opened the game again. The dead character entered the next room with our other living characters but he did not move. He was there but he did not move.
When the next cutscene triggered, he wasn't there and the game registered his death. But that was the only glitch we encountered so i think it was pretty good. And that glitch literally fixed itself.
I completed this game. Got the platinum trophy. It took 10 hours. 3 full playthroughs but many partial playthroughs. I am happy i did it but it's also not necessary and became a bit boring in the last 5,6 hours. Like i said previously i highly recommend multiple playthroughs. There was a chapter we totally missed thanks to my and my co-op partner's choices. A whole 15 minute chapter. So if you have a few trophies left after your replays, maybe you can try to get the platinum.
I really liked Man of Medan. It's not good as Until Dawn which was a masterpiece in my opinion, but it was still good. Story is good, twist is great, atmosphere is nice but the characters could have been deeper, the first hours are boring and there are some quick time events/choices that doesn't work. It's on PS Plus Essential this month(July 2022) so i recommend everyone to give it a try. If you like narrative focused games, i think you will really enjoy Man of Medan. I certainly did.