DISTRAINT: Deluxe Edition Reviews

  • XxFrAsZeRxXXxFrAsZeRxX1,377,059
    02 Aug 2020 02 Aug 2020
    9 0 2
    Another publication from the famous (perhaps infamous) Ratalaika Games. I don't want to go too far down a rabbit hole here talking about the publisher rather than the game, but I will say I think the hate that Ratalaika gets is unwarranted.

    There are some games that are considered to be absolute masterpieces or revolutionize an entire genre (Elite: Dangerous, Halo, Call of Duty, DOOM, etc.). Those games, and many others, tend to have people putting hundreds upon hundreds of hours into their games. They are/were beautiful things created by an entire team of developers. Those games should be praised for the contributions they have put forward to the industry.

    However, something I feel many people forget is not every game needs to be some revolutionary, blockbuster hit with hundreds of hours of gameplay to be considered "good". It is perfectly okay for a small developer team to make a short, simple, game, and still have it be enjoyable to the player. The stigma around here seems to be that if a game is easy, it can't be good. That is definitely not always true. This game absolutely falls into that category.

    The gameplay is extremely simple, the "puzzles" are very simple (I followed the walkthrough on here, but none of it seemed all that difficult to figure out). The game's mechanics are very simple.

    You play as a person who goes to people's houses to evict them, hence the name "Distraint". You are simply conversing with people, with no dialogue choices, and manipulating your environment to get people to do what you want them to do (leave their house willingly). The story is completely linear, and with many point and click elements (though it isn't your typical point and click game). Obviously, this isn't the main attraction to the game.

    The game's best feature is its story. This game's story was more compelling than any AAA title I have personally played in at least a couple of years. I do not want to spoil anything in this review, but the story is very dark, and could probably be relatable to many people. It all deals with how this person reacts to evicting people, along with the fallout that it causes. Furthermore, it touches on who is behind the distraining. Even though the graphics were simplistic, and the dialogue wasn't anything groundbreaking, I still found myself intrigued by the character's actions and feelings, and moved by the ending and the people that the main character interacts with.

    Now, it is by no means a perfect game. Its faults did not detract from my enjoyment of the game all that much, just some things did not seem to fit. For example, there is a puzzle about halfway through the game where you have to activate 5 lights in a specific, but random, order. It wasn't hard or anything, but it sort of came out of nowhere and didn't add much to the game. I suppose my issue with it is it detracting from the sort "immersion" (for lack of a better word) of the story. It was sort of a one-off thing. There were one or two other levels that had some unique mechanics like that. I suppose it was with the purpose of varying up the gameplay, but for me personally, it didn't really add anything to the game as the gameplay for the game isn't it's selling point, to begin with. I imagine those mechanics would have worked fine if introduced earlier or used more often.

    One other complaint was the level design for one of the later levels was a bit confusing as it was hard to distinguish between the different rooms at times (thankfully they tell you what room you have entered at the bottom of the screen to help keep your bearings). But even with that in mind, the levels are not all that big at all, so it's easy to find your way back to wherever it is you are trying to go.

    And since this is an achievement site, I will mention (as can be seen by the stupidly low ratio) that the achievements are extremely easy. The game only takes 1-2 hours and it does not overstay it's welcome like some other games do. There are a group of missable achievements but are not easily missed if you are paying attention (even easier if the walkthrough is followed, and it can be followed while still enjoying the story since it gives no spoilers).

    To recap, Distraint is a very simple game with mostly point and click mechanics. On its own, this type of game might be boring to some, but the story this game presents more than makes up for the lackluster gameplay. The game did not need to be anything more than it is, it set out to tell a compelling story, and to me, it absolutely did that. I look forward to the second game.
    Showing both comments.
    A DEAD B0DY MANI liked it. The ending was great. Story was great .
    Posted by A DEAD B0DY MAN on 27 Aug 20 at 01:30
    XxFrAsZeRxXWhich one?
    Posted by XxFrAsZeRxX on 16 Sep 20 at 18:58