Girlfriend Gaming – We Play Saw: The Video Game

Steff is a huge fan of the Saw series. The first entries to the series are some of her favourite horror movies of all-time. Because of that connection, she’s wanted to play this game for quite some time. It’s not easy to find new nowadays, but I was able to pick it up for her duringone of my random trips to Blockbuster. After spending some time with her in Jigsaw’s asylum, did this survival horror game scare the heck out of us? Or will we turn Jigsaw down next time he asks us to play a game?

The Saw video game tells its own story within the Saw universe. You play as David Tapp, who is a detective that is obsessed with capturing Jigsaw. You start out the game with the iconic face-mask attached and immediately are required to complete a quick time event to remove it before it tears your head in half. We had some trouble in this opening sequence due to how the gamehandles this particular sequence. You have to rotate the left stick in a direction while hitting key buttons as they appear on screen. The problem here was that the commands appeared within the face mask, which is easy to miss if you’re not expecting to look there and aren’t even clear to read if you know where to find them. The other annoying part about this sequence is that if you mess up a button input, even the very first one, you have to sit through the entire countdown to watch your character die. We watched this happen four or five times until we figured out how to complete the sequence, and it was annoying every time.

Once we got past that, our experience was smoother in general. Saw sort of plays like Silent Hill, with an emphasis on puzzle solving and quick time events. Considering the fact that we didn’t get very far into the game, we didn’t run into any puzzles or quick time events that were overly difficult, but they definitely take cues from the source material, which is great for fans of these movies. For instance, the moment Steff got the face mask off, she looked around the room, and without any other influence, closed the bathroom doors. She told me it would come in
handy. The moment she turned around, she was looking into the mirror, and the image it created with the bathroom doors closed revealed the pass code for the door. It’s cool that the game rewarded her like that. The only other thing I can really comment on is that we ran into a few technical issues with the game. In general, the game is extremely dark, which makes it hard to see anything. In one instance, we actually missed out an entire section
of the world because what we thought was a black wall was actually a dark entrance to another area. We also ran into some bugs. When Steff was playing, she managed to get herself stuck inside a ‘fort’ of objects, which prohibited her from moving outside that walled space. She had to restart the game in order to get out. The other bug we ran into happened when I was playing. There are certain sections of the world that are only connected with a very thin beam. You have to carefully walk across them and tilt the controller to stay balanced. The problem is, if you don’t line up exactly with the beam, your character will be locked in the ‘balancing’ position for a few seconds, then fall to his death while stuck in that stance. Steff is enjoying the game so far. She likes how true it stays to the movies while telling a story of its own. She also enjoys the puzzle solving she’s done up until now. It sucks that we’ve run into a few weird technical issues and design choices, but I’m hoping for her sake that the game gets better as she proceeds.

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