The Occupation Xbox One Review
THERE IS SOMETHING TERRIBLY WRONG WITH THIS COUNTRY ISN’T THERE?
From developers White Paper Games and publishers Humble Bumble comes the enticing new first-person investigative thriller, The Occupation. Set in North West England in an 80s Britain in a politically divided time, you play an inquisitive journalist set with trying to prevent perhaps the single most harmful act of British politics the nation has ever seen: “The Union Act”. Will you rise to the challenge and can you change history forever?
Let me start off by saying the attention to detail in The Occupation is ABSURD. There are so many tiny little different things you can do from buying a coffee to faxing documents and filing important evidence away in your briefcase: I was quite surprised at the level of detail of the maps.
The whole ethos of the game is wonderful, you always feel the adrenaline going when you have to stealth into staff only areas or when you’ve found a promising piece of evidence, for the guard to enter the room in the exit you came from, forcing you to hide under a table and pray he doesn’t see you…it’s this on edge feeling that keeps The Occupation coming back for more.
The level design is also superb, you think there’s only one way into a room? Think again. From entrances behind bookshelves and entryways via air vents, if you can’t find a way in through the front door, there’s always an alternative.
I’m going to sound like Shrek here for a moment, but The Occupation has so many layers to it. It’s a big puzzle game, but one done with such attention to the narrative and gameplay that it really doesn’t feel like one. Half of my time playing The Occupation, I was just checking stuff out to see what it did.
And that’s what’s magic about it, you’re never quite sure what you do next is going to be the right thing, or if it will have lasting effects.
The graphics of The Occupation are similar to of “We Happy Few” and a comparison with this game wouldn’t be too out of place. The game has a similar eery vibe to it, minus the deranged policemen. The graphics are slightly comic-esque, but everything is highly detailed and surprisingly considering the amount of stuff cram packed into the game, it runs pretty smoothly. I played at a solid 60fps for the majority of the game which was a good effort.
The gameplay can get a bit repetitive after a while, however. Because of the nature of the game, there will be moments where you’re not sure of what to do next and looking around in the same places looking for the next objective or quest progressor can be tedious if you don’t get it first time round. You’ll spend a lot of time reading documents and assessing what passwords, ID cards or floppy disks you need to recover in order to find what you’re looking for.
Overall, The Occupation proved to be quite a fun game. It’s not as face-paced as other games, but in some areas, does have it’s urgency. You’ll be searching around for leads and using your dossier to gather clues regarding your objective. You’ll be reading documents, cracking into safes and escaping through vents, all in the pursuit of truth and the halting of a new law about to be passed by government. Should you get it? I would definitely say yes, but be mindful, as I know this game isn’t for everyone. There were moments in the game where I was a bit lost on where to go and what to do, and no one likes it when you’re walking round like a headless chicken. On the whole though, a very well done game with an outstandingly impressive attention to detail.
Price – £19.99