We Happy Few Reviews

  • The S bot 9000The S bot 9000754,250
    01 May 2019 16 Dec 2019
    11 3 5
    We Happy Few is a game that takes place in a retro-futuristic British region referred to as Wellington Wells. Throughout the main campaign, you will play as 3 separate characters each with their own strengths and weaknesses as you seek to unravel the mystery of what has happened in the past and the direction that this region, and the characters you're playing as, move to in the future. To keep this review short, I'll first talk about the biggest positives that I experienced playing this game and the biggest negatives I had. I will also try to be as ambiguous as possible so I don't spoil anything for people looking to play this game in the future.

    -The aesthetic: The look and feel of this game is fantastic; From groovy British synths in certain areas to slowed down 70s records in others, the game does a fantastic job at immersing you in it's atmosphere. On top of that, all the unique voice acting as well as NPC reactions are really solid at bringing some extra life into the world. (There is a caveat within the NPC voicing that I will be voicing in the negatives however).
    -The Storyline: Each character is fantastic in their own way, and the story does a great job explaining how each of their disadvantages and advantages that each character are tied into parts of their persona. The world of Wellington Wells is an interesting, almost apocalyptic, world as well; with many side characters and subplots burrowing underneath each city and even each abandoned lot where the "downers" hang about. The collectibles in the game also offered nice insight and deeper world building, I'm not a fan of collectibles in general but at the very least the interesting quips and stories made the gathering in this game bearable.
    -Minor RPG Elements: You have to perform some micromanaging in regards to food, health and drink meters as well as weight management while also being on the lookout for status effects that DO NOT go away unless you have the correct supplies. I'm a huge fan of things like this because it allows me to horde every item I come across and feels satisfying when you finally reach a point where these hindrances disappear.

    -The AI: when you aggro a single NPC, the rest of the NPCs in the area and any subsequent area you attempt to run towards will be AUTOMATICALLY aggro'd as well, devolving into a ridiculous chicken run with 5+ people running after you over things ranging from murder to even accidentally trespassing. This mob mentality also affects the sound since with each new aggro: the AI feels compelled to scream one of it's very few alert phrases.
    -The combat: The combat in this game feels very 1 dimensional and feels like more could have been done. While I didn't participate in much combat until I beat the game (As I was going for the pacifist playthrough achievement) when I did have to engage in fisticuffs, it often felt stale and almost unfinished to a point.
    -The optimization: Normally optimization is not that big of a deal, video games have to load information and a HDD can only load it so fast, but this game definitely feels like there needed to be a few more months dedicated to lowering the frequency of load times and the length of them as well. Within one of the major cities, you will often be hit with 1-3 loading screens when traveling end to end and with many quests that require you to constantly travel long distances, this slowly becomes a larger and larger nuisance.
    -RNG: This game is procedurally generated, meaning that the world I played will NOT be the same world you as a reader will play when you first load the game. Although key landmarks will remain within the game, they are shifted into a different layout which is definitely a cool and impressive concept if it wasn't for the fact that collectibles were put out onto this open world (albeit at landmarked locations). With different layouts, trying to find some of the masks was an arduous journey for me and forced me to run around like a madman until I found the landmark that I was looking for. On top of that, there is one collectible in this game that spawns entirely based on RNG, resulting in me spending roughly an hour or two trying to get ONLY the final one to spawn in.

    Overall I would recommend this game while it remains on Game Pass as it was a positive experience for me in the end but can't help but feel like this would have been a few points higher if the developers would have worked out the technical issues that plague it. While going for achievements I was able to squeeze 35 hours out of this game which isn't bad all things considered. If I had to put a price on this game, I would probably say it's a great buy at ~$20.
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    ICE Faux PirateI really want to play this since it has a high TA ratio and the concept of the story sounds interesting but the lack of optimization and collectibles on PGM's sounds like it would drive me insane.
    Posted by ICE Faux Pirate on 20 Aug 19 at 15:50
    EveryBaseNow that it's XSX enhanced you should try it. The technical issues are gone.
    Posted by EveryBase on 21 Nov 20 at 20:27
    WTG x RoCK STaRAgreed! Already ''working'' on it.
    Posted by WTG x RoCK STaR on 12 Jan 21 at 04:46
  • Spring ShieldsSpring Shields445,278
    18 Jan 2020 04 Apr 2020
    4 6 0
    First thing I noticed about We Happy Few is it's retro-futuristic art direction, akin to the BioShock games. We Happy Few pulls this off well enough and it creates a nice looking game world.

    Sadly, the game's art direction is about the only positive experience I can relay about the game.

    The game's open world feels rather soulless and lacks any sort of personality. NPC's walk around the streets and that's it. No conversing or interacting with other NPCs and will only interact and talk to you if you engage them. The game's open world also feels unnecessarily large, a good chunk of the game's run time is just tedious commuting, until you unlock fast travel areas.

    The game crashed on me, well over half a dozen times, kicking me back out to the Xbox One dashboard. The game's loading screens are unforgivably bad, lasting nearly a minute in some instances. The traversing of the open world environment also triggered slightly less long loading screens while still being in the same level area. This happened well over a dozen times and then I stopped counting.

    The game also has a serious issue with texture loading and streaming. Some textures would fail to load altogether, leaving a garbage bin to look like a blurry mess or a sign on some one's desk looking like the raised dots and dashes of brail. Some textures would pop in well after a second or two, others would slowly load in over time.

    The game's AI is among the worst I've ever seen. In one case, I was choking out a police officer who was not more than 2 feet away from his buddy and his buddy kept walking on like nothing was happening. There were also times where I was clearly trespassing in an area, stared right at an NPC a few feet away, and nothing happened, no reaction at all. The NPCs essentially have no peripheral vision and can't see past their own nose, so they're easy to cheese, run around and pick off.

    The game is also just a buggy mess. There's at least one area of the map that I can reliably clip through and see underneath the world. Several times an NPC's walk cycle **** up, so they just looked they were gliding around on rocket skates. One of my favourite moments was a woman NPC moonwalking backwards while doing the "happy strut" and then clipped through a building.

    The game relies on survival crafting elements for health, food and drinks, clothing, weapons etc, which weren't bad, but just took a back seat to all of the criticisms listed above.

    Overall, We Happy Few is a game that has some nice ideas that were poorly executed, serious optimization issues and various bugs and glitches. I bought this game for 50% off and still feel like I overpaid for this game.