Overclocked: A History of Violence Review
Overclocked: A History of Violence box art
System: PC, Review Rating Legend
Dev: House of Tales 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Lighthouse Interactive 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: April, 11, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Mature 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

It's actually quite surprising how fast you can move from one area to the next - both in terms of movement and in the speedy, near-instantaneous transitions. In contrast, things temporarily come to a screeching halt whenever cut-scenes are thrown into the mix, which is often. These scenes are great to watch, and it's good to see the developers make frequent use of them, but they just make the game drag unnecessarily each time the action stops abruptly for things to load.

Overclocked: A History of Violence screenshot

Graphically, Overclocked is a mixed-bag. The locations are appropriately gloomy and well-detailed, and the cutscenes are fluid and fairly impressive. Psychiatry sessions in the dilapidated (and apparently fecal-smeared) cells for each of the patients and flashbacks to the mysterious military facility tend to get repetitive, since you'll see much of the same-looking scenery over and over again. Aside from some strange facial characteristics and off expressions that don't quite match up on occasion, character movement and appearances are believable. The voice acting ranges from quite good at times to completely atrocious. The script sometimes degenerates into a mindless drawl only to pick back up again shortly afterward. A few characters are particularly obnoxious.

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Visual issues do present themselves from time-to-time when McNamara (or one of the patients you're controlling) attempts to physically interact with some objects. In one scene he's at a bar nursing a scotch while chatting with the bartender; when he goes to drink, it appears he lifts the glass and sort of splashes the invisible liquor on his face without even opening his mouth. He then proceeds to chatter like nothing happened while the bartender pours him another round, but nothing comes out. There are more than a few of these kinds of instances scattered elsewhere, and it gives the game a slightly rough-around-the edges feeling.

The game's odd, dark storyline will keep you pushing onward to the conclusion. The patients' experiences are creepy and compelling, particularly since you're only given bits and pieces of the equation at a time. McNamara's own issues give off an ominous undercurrent through much of the story as well, which provides another angle to boost the thick and moody atmosphere. Overclocked is a decent adventure title that falters slightly from a fair share of issues. Still, it's got a strong pull; you'll enjoy most of the ride if you can dodge the muck along the way.

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Staff Contributor

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.7
Graphics
Interesting environments and great cutscenes balance out some odd quirks in character design.
4.0
Control
A slightly different and successful twist on traditional point-and-click controls.
3.6
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Noisy industrial tunes juxtaposed against moody atmospheric music. A mixture of some great and some crappy voice acting.
3.5
Play Value
A compelling mystery draws you through the game steadily, but you may not want to look back once you're done.
3.7
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Several Player controlled characters allow the player to experience the story from different viewpoints.
  • Innovative storytelling techniques create a unique gameplay experience.
  • Fluid character movements and an advanced facial animation system bring the characters to life.
  • Achieves cinematic presentation by use of camera techniques pioneered by feature films.
  • Icon based dialogue system.
  • Complex yet intuitive interface.
  • Dynamic real-time shadows.
  • Atmospheric real-time particle effects (rain, snow, lightning).


  • Screenshots / Images
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