Sometimes you run into games where you can’t help but feel they’re a bit of a victim of the timing of their release, in particular when they hover around games that have a similar feel but are simply executed better. For me that’s the case of Severed Steel, which absolutely delivers an intense mix of parkour-like movement with blazing guns action all in a visually-distinctive environment. A year ago I think my reaction to it would have been more enthusiastic (though I’d still argue that its controls are a bit more herky jerky than I’d prefer), but since this is arriving only a month after the similar but much more polished and impressive Neon White it’s hard not to shake the comparison. Now, if you’d prefer a greater focus on combat and less on traversal, that relationship is better represented by Severed Steel, without a doubt. The fact that the stages are designed more as a sandbox for you to experiment with, trying different paths for efficiently blowing through your enemies, would also be a plus. The problem for me is more in the quality and polish of the controls, with the precision of Neon White so thoroughly blowing away the more chaotic “try your best and good luck” feel in Steel. All that said, if you enjoy the idea of movement and shooting with a high twitch factor married with the ability to improvise you may find that it’s completely up your alley.
Justin Nation, Score: