Thief Review: Garret comes out of hiding.
Rebooting a classic
Having never played the original, I had no idea what to expect with Thief, but I am happy to report that, aside from a few misgivings, Thief is an excellent stealth title and a welcome addition to the currently limited variety of next-gen games.
Darkness is your ally
Light is a key element of Thief's gameplay. In order to stay hidden, you must avoid light sources. These lights can be extinguished by using water or choke arrows or putting out candles. Some lights cannot be put out and require skillful navigation and timing to escape a patrol undetected. Staying in the shadows offers a fun challenge in order to avoid detection.
Arrows of death, arrows of stealth
As a master thief, you have a variety of arrows at your disposal. If silently dispatching enemies from a distance is your goal, broadhead or sawtooth arrows should do the trick. If you prefer a nonviolent approach, you can use water arrows to keep hidden in the dark or blunt arrows to create distractions or paths to your objective.
Focus man, focus
You also have an ability called focus. This can be used to highlight loot, guide you if you are lost, or reveal hidden traps and switches. You can also spend focus points to acquire focus abilities such as instant knockouts or silent movement. It is entirely possible to get through the game without using focus, but it is a welcome tool if you are having trouble with this difficult game.
Getting caught sucks
While the game offers a variety of options in the stealth category, options are limited when you are detected. You can either run (recommended) or fight. If you fight, you must use your blackjack and dodge abilities to knock guards out. The combat is very repetitive and controls awkwardly. As a result, I found myself reloading my save anytime I was detected.
Thief follows Garret, a master thief interested only in loot. After an accident during a heist, Garret's partner is killed and he is knocked out for over a year. When he next awakens, he remembers nothing before the accident and is caught up in a conflict between the baron and his cruel watch and Orion and his rebels. During his search for answers, Garret will find himself on both sides of the conflict and uncover a few secrets along the way. While the plot is interesting enough and it manages to sneak a few twists in, the ending is ultimately a disappointment, leaving a bad taste in your mouth.
The graphics are nice, though
Technically speaking, Thief is top notch. Textures are detailed and character models are sharp and realistic. The game also performs excellently, with no bugs or hiccups in frame rate. The sound effects are also solid, even if the synthetic soundtrack feels oddly out of place in the more historic setting.
Stay hidden, you'll love it, Get caught, well not so much
As an action game, Thief does not impress, but as a stealth title, it is amongst the best in recent memory and a welcome addition to any next- gen library.