Genre: Action-Adventure | Developer: Quantic Dream | Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment | Publication Date: 25.05.2018 | Platform: PS4
Game title: Detroit: Become Human
Game description: Become Human is an adventure game developed by Quantic Dream and released by Sony Interactive Entertainment for PlayStation 4. The storyline revolves around three androids: Kara, who escapes the factory where she was made to explore her newly discovered sensation; Connor, whose job it is to hunt deviant androids; and Markus, who is dedicated to the liberation of the androids from slavery. They can survive or perish, depending on the action options that shape the story according to the wishes of the player.
Detroit, the US metropolis directly on the Canadian border where the robot industry is booming in 2038. The company CyberLife offers service robots in showrooms – androids in human form do the heavy and unpleasant work: construction workers, nurses. Thousands of jobs are lost. People are demonstrating on the streets. New social conflicts are looming – albeit from a completely unexpected direction: androids are simply considered machines or tools, are pushed around or mistreated so much by their owners that they have to be repaired by their manufacturers. It is precisely this violence that leads some androids to develop their own consciousness – and no longer follow the orders of their human masters as they expect them to.
Detroit: Become Human – Three stories, one goal
Detroit: Become Human is a work of David Cage and the development studio Quantic Dream have developed a dark and original setting adventure game for PlayStation 4 after Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls. You experience a story and can make various decisions that, together with the outcome of numerous quick time events, have a strong impact on the course of the story. In Detroit: Become Human takes control of three different androids, each of which is assigned a specific role by the builder.
Kara starts the game working as a housekeeper and nanny with a single father who tends to domestic violence and drug use. Like any Android, it first fits into its role and executes commands. So you clean the laundry, cook, but also learn that you are already the second Kara to work in this household. The first one was probably damaged during a rage, your memory was erased during the repair. But people still haven’t forgotten what happened in this household, you feel it – and you see it when you have to fight against your own programming.
Markus, on the other hand, looks after a wealthy paraplegic artist in his villa. And he has to see his useless son squeezing money out of his father just to finance his drug addiction. Finally, Connor is the most technically advanced Android – he supports Detroit’s police in their hunt for so-called deviants. This is the name given to those androids who no longer wish to follow human commands. He’s the android hunter among the androids. He hunts, catches and interrogates deviant droids. As a player, you can decide whether you want to lie to your peers to squeeze out a confession. Or whether you say from the beginning that there will be no way around their dismantling.
The gameplay of Detroit: Become Human
The gameplay for PS4 remains somewhat rudimentary over the twelve hours you have to invest until the credits move across the screen. Detroit consists of a series of relatively short episodes – most of which are around 10 to 30 minutes long. As in previous games of Quantic Dream, the plot runs for a long time without our help. We only have to control the figures to the usable objects and press a button on the gamepad or use the analog stick to make a movement shown on the screen so that the respective protagonist opens a door or uses an object.
As Mark, you can plan your body movements in advance at certain points and then carry them out in a targeted manner. If you jump from position A, you reach your goal, you jump from position B, you do not reach it – simple trial and error puzzles, which however never lead to the fact that you must reload, because you simulate everything in your android head in advance anyway. Only rarely are there places in between where we get a little more to do.
As Connor, you’ve got a lot to do at crime scenes. There you have to collect clues and, also virtually in the android head, reconstruct some of the events. Or we have a choice in pursuits, which of two or three ways we choose, which can have dramatic consequences. This also applies to surveys and dialogues, in which we can choose the best answers from given answers – without always being able to clearly identify exactly what the respective Android actually says on the basis of the keywords.
In all of these sections, not only minor characters can die in wrong decisions, but also main characters. As far as we understand the matter, however, the game always remains solvable. Nevertheless, Detroit Become Human is not particularly difficult, not even in the somewhat less simple of the two difficulty levels. It took us about 12 hours to get through the campaign, but the replay value is high: we can replay the episodes later, make different decisions or queue up for an interrogation, which certainly has a greater impact on the overall plot.
Because like in real life, there is usually not the only right decision. Often you have to choose between two evils and then live with the consequences. But each storyline has its own surprises to discover. Detroit cuts a good figure graphically. The surroundings are lovingly worked out, animations and the facial expressions of the androids seem credible. Many scenes are elaborately cut.