The Order 1886

One of the long-awaited games back in 2015 was The Order 1886. And, sure enough, the game came and the gaming community was… Disappointed, to say the least. The Order is a fantastically detailed game – but empty. It’s like an oil painting, beautiful, stunning, but you mustn’t touch it. The Order is, in the end, a great movie, but a bad game.

Too Much of a Movie to Be a Game, Too Much of a Game to Be a Movie

Imagine a steampunk London where an ancient Order of knights fights werewolves and a rebellion at the same time. They’re aided by Nicola Tesla, who is their gadget guy and supplies arms and armament. This is exactly what The Order 1886 is.

What the game is also, it’s a stunning and beautiful beyond words. The visuals are absolutely rocking – the London portrayed in The Order is a Victorian era city where splendor and riches are in stark contrast with slums and poverty. The game makes use of some brilliant cinematic techniques to deliver what is, essentially, a period movie. Indeed, the game is so well thought out that playing and watching the cinematics really feels like you’re watching a superb fantasy film on a big screen.

But that’s just the problem. The Order is worse than lackluster when it comes to gameplay. This is a cover-based shooter at its core and one where werewolf encounters are minimal and way too short to be enjoyable. Mostly, you’ll be shooting at cannon fodder human enemies behind cover or in the open. Sure, your arsenal is impressive, and you can employ quick-time takedowns that, though frowned upon in the gaming community, are really well made in this one, but the combat is flat and repetitive. Not only that but because there are black stripes above and below on your screen that create a letterbox effect like when you’re watching a movie, you can’t really see what’s happening on the other side and where the enemies are.

Lastly, it’s a look but don’t touch world, like we said in the beginning. There are myriad of parts where you just walk around and take in the scenery, listening to the NPCs speaking of Jack the Ripper, but you can do only that – walk. You can’t run and you can’t even jog. There are a few things you can interact with outside combat, things like photos and documents, but you can only flip them over or put them down when you pick them up. The playable part is constantly interrupted by unskippable cutscenes, making the action stop-and-go. Just imagine yourself stuck in LA traffic, and that’s exactly how The Order 1886 feels.

Conclusion

All in all, The Order 1886 is a game that could have been something, but, because it focused too much on character building, storytelling and cinematics, you ended up with nothing more than an interactive movie. The 7-hour gameplay is completely unremarkable, and, at this point, we just wish the developers had given the idea to Hollywood to make a feature film.