Dishonored is, quite frankly one of the best games of this generation, as we suggested in our 9/10 review. It's staggeringly good, stealthy tour-de-force that excels at providing some serious satisfaction when it comes to shadowy action. And it's now out over here in the UK today! So, to celebrate Arkane proving that you can drop a new IP at the end of a console cycle (take that, Gibeau!), here are ten tips to help you survive Dunwall's streets, sewers, and skyline.
10. You're Not Batman
Batman might be able to step into a tiny shadow and disappear, but you're not him. Guards will pass you over from a distance if you're hiding in a shadowy corner, but otherwise make sure that there's a solid object in between you and their eyes. Shadows are useful at range, but anyone up close will grow pretty suspicious. Still, if they do start getting uncomfortably close, you can always posses a rat and scurry away, or possess the guard himself and make him jump from a high ledge.
9. River Krusts Are Bastards
They might look a little bit like The Addams Family's eater eggs, but these disgusting mollusks have one purpose, and one purpose only: to vomit acid bile all over you until you drop dead. If you spot a cluster of them, check the surrounding area with Dark Vision for other humans. If there's no one around to hear you, blast the Krusts with a grenade. You could try and Blink past them, or even sneak if you have sound reduction on your boots, but otherwise blow them up from behind cover and then steal the pearls that they've been hiding.
8. Rewire Tools Are A Lot Of Fun...But They Will Affect Chaos
There's actually precious few things more satisfying than sneaking into a City Watch compound under the radar, stealthing past a massive watchtower, and then rewiring the damn thing to annihilate all of your enemies for you. You can rewire Arc Pylons (think tesla coils) and Walls of Light too, giving unsuspecting guards a nasty bolt of lightning up their asses and instantly reducing them to sizzling ashes. It's worth noting, though, that although it won't upset a ghost run or contribute to detection, your Chaos rating will go through the roof as a result off the bodycount.
7. Be Creative...Especially With Rats
Dishonored gives you lots of toys to play with, so make sure you spend some time having fun with them. Possession is a treasure trove of dark delights, particularly useful for surviving long falls and interrupting villainous speeches. But it's perhaps the rats that provide the most fun. Useful to summon as a distraction, they'll also devour corpses for you, they can provide access to previously unreachable areas through their tiny tunnel networks, and you can fit them with explosives and springrazor traps Wanted-style. It's disgusting. And awesome.
Don't be afraid to run away. As much as Blink can be used to rush guards, and slit their throats in their confusion, so too can the ever-useful teleportation power allow for a quick getaway into cover when you find yourself surrounded. Guards are typically handy with a blade, and not afraid to shoot you at point blank range. Possession can also make for a speedy getaway, just be mindful if there's an Overseer nearby with a magic-sapping organ.
5. Conserve Your Mana
Blink and Dark Vision don't cost you any of the precious blue stuff, as long as you let the bar refill. So be patient, remember that the recharge time is actually fairly swift (especially if you've got a Bone Charm equipped), and don't spam the left trigger. Also bear in mind that if you have a High Mana power (like Possession) equipped with not enough juice in the tank to support it, nudging the trigger will automatically top up your Mana bar, so if you're running low on Piero's concoction, swap your power back to Blink.
4. Hide Your Bodies Well
There's nothing more infuriating than thinking you've done the perfect stealth run only to discover that half of the bodies you left behind - alive or dead - were discovered. If you're just ghosting it through while dishing out large doses of vengeful mortality, then Shadow Kill lvl. 2 is essential, seeing as it turns dead bodies into dust immediately. If you're stashing the unconscious, then make sure you put your deep sleepers completely out of sight. Chests and cupboards are the best. Behind dumpsters down dark alleys with other corpses. But don't drop them in bodies of water if you're doing a non-violent playthrough as they'll definitely die.
3. Look Up...and Down
Every level in Dishonored is essentially a sandbox waiting to be played, and it's easy to forget about the verticality of Dunwall. The rooftops and sewers are your friends, and the path less travelled is almost certainly worth checking out, both in terms off routes towards your target, and sneaky hiding places for Runes and Bone Charms. Get a good feel for each map you find yourself in - both above and below street level - and always have an escape route or two, you never know when you might need one.
2. Be A Sneaky Voyeur
Eavesdropping can be one of the best ways to learn about the city of Dunwall, story snippets, and also uncover side missions, assassination tips such as where the target is residing, and also revelations regarding potential non-lethal routes. Hide in the rafters, buy an ocular upgrade from Piero and listen in on guards half a mile away. It'll immerse you in the story further and provide plenty of useful tidbits of info.
1. Every Mission Has A Non-Lethal Solution
It's entirely possible to go through Dishonored without killing a soul, you just have to ensure that Corvo knows how. Sam the boatman might give you a little tip off at the start, but generally the best way to ensure you have everything you need to make an informed decision about how to proceed is to talk to every NPC that you find. Make sure you investigate the side missions too - some might "only" yield up a Bone Charm or a Rune, but others will grant you opportunities that would otherwise be unavailable to you later in the game.
Above all...be patient!
On the fence about Dishonored? Here's why you need it in your life. If you've snapped up the game today, let us know how you get on, and tell us about some of your favourite moments in the box below.