As an open-world setting for a new first-person action, stealth, exploration jam from Arkane - the studio behind critically acclaimed titles like Dishonored, Prey, and, more recently, Deathloop - Redfall the town presents an evocative and strikingly quaint locale to videogame in. That said, this is also a departure for both the studio and Bethesda, so Redfall the videogame offers a story-driven and loot-heavy campaign that can be played solo or co-op with up to four players.
It’s a shame, then, that even with its sound premise, an interesting setting, and co-op sandbox framework, Redfall is just so disappointing. So many of its elements feel off, from small things like the lack of a weapon wheel to switch between weapons to slightly more critical gripes like being three screens away from changing a pistol to a UV Beam.
These criticisms sit low on a list that includes bigger things like its confusing and meandering narrative, lack of meaningful exploration and discovery, and the complete lack of surprise. For a game with “loot” to find, that last bit is what you’d call a nail in the wooden box.
Redfall is launching on Xbox consoles with Quality mode only:— Redfall (@playRedfall) April 12, 2023
Xbox Series X: 4K 30 FPS
Xbox Series S: 1440p 30 FPS
60 FPS Performance mode will be added via game update at a later date. pic.twitter.com/NLaGsMbwdW
With the game’s release slated for May 2 on PC and Xbox, Redfall is something of a departure while still feeling like a game from the studio behind Dishonored. And that’s a departure in that the setting of coastal Redfall, Massachusetts, presents an open-world environment full of exploration and NPC-driven “side quests.”
Class-based skills, leveling, and a string of weapons of varying rarity and stats give the action an action-RPG feel. But this isn’t a “looter shooter” per se, in that rewards and weapons are not the be-all end-all of progression - as Redfall is firmly focused on delivering an engaging cinematic action and ability-based experience with story front and center, alongside that quintessential Arkane style.