FIRST 10 MINUTES | X360, PS3 Sunday, November 29, 2009 | 3:45 AM

The First 10 Minutes: Saw

The First 10 Minutes: Saw

This week, we finally got a copy of konami's Saw. The game has been released here in Europe for about a week now so here are the first ten minutes of the game, along with another video that will give you a good idea of what the game is about. A third video will follow later because you're worth it.
Update: The third video is now up.

Express opinion:

I only got a chance to complete the first two chapters of the game but it's more than enough to see what the game has to offer. On a technical standpoint, the game uses Unreal Engine 3 and, though there is nothing to brag about, it gets the job done when it comes to rendering the dirty and decrepit atmosphere of the franchise. The textures are ok most of the time and the environments, though far from being original, are at least convincing enough. I wouldn't say so for the different characters though, they are poorly modeled and could have used some more work. The framerate is not very high (and yet tearing is still very much there) and the animations are way too stiff and definitely not up to today's standards. The voice acting is a mix of good with Jigsaw's official voice and cheesy with all the other characters who really sound like they're playing in an Ed Wood movie.

Most of the gameplay revolves around some puzzle solving sequences which require logic, address, speed sometimes - there are some time-limited puzzles - and a good sense of observation. In the first hours of play, it is rather promising in that area as the puzzles seem to be varied enough to prevent the game from getting repetitive. However, after a while, you realize that, once you have discovered all the different kinds of puzzles, you will be doing them over and over again. All in all though, they are not that bad, there is some good challenge for once and death is often around the corner if you're not careful enough. It helps build up the tension, especially when you are running out of time to save one of Jigsaw's prisoners. Death can also be very frustrating at times as starting all over does not mean you are going to do better the second time around.

Which leads me to one of the main issues the game has: the combat. Talking about frustrating gameplay, combat deserves the gold medal of the worst fighting system ever. It feels like the main character is ninety years old given how slow he gets when using a weapon. It soon becomes obvious that using his bare hands is far more efficient and less risky than trying to hit his enemies with, say, a pipe or a baseball bat. Also frustrating are the completely dark areas you sometimes have to go through and where you must you the flash of a camera to "see" something. If I can give you some advice, stick with the lighter you are given in the beginning, it is much more practical.

In short, Saw is not as bad as we might have feared but it still falls short from being a very good survival horror game. You can tell that there was some good potential but unfortunately, the development team did not quite nail it. The US reviews have been kind to the game whereas here in Europe, it is depicted as a horrible game. I guess I stand in between as I don't think the game is worth more than a rental but I also believe some players will have good fun with it provided they are not the demanding kind. It might even interest achievement/trophy whores as the videos will prove that Saw is very generous in that area. It's now up to you to see how far you're ready to go to satisfy your craving for scoring.

The first 10 minutes part 1
The first 10 minutes part 2
The first 10 minutes part 3

All comments

Commented on 2009-11-28 20:24:56
It could be really awesome if in the game there was a puzzle and if you dont do it in the time you die in real life!!!!



Commented on 2009-11-28 20:39:39
I've watched the first 4 or so mins (to not spoil the rest) and actually liked it....I will definitely rent it.
Commented on 2009-11-28 20:54:14
Now that is a way to give achievements away.
It doesn't look like it could entertain me for long.
Commented on 2009-11-28 21:05:56
Is it just me, or does this look pretty sweet graphically? Shame that the gameplay seems to be sub-par.
Commented on 2009-11-28 21:57:39
I'm quite interested in this, really like puzzle games and this seems to have some quite a few decent ones in it.
Commented on 2009-11-28 23:11:06
I've never really liked these games and movies.
Commented on 2009-11-29 00:16:03
Hopefully the difficulty ramps up steeply; that looked a bit easy.

Lots of potential for a Saw series.
They could really go nuts with it if they wanted to.
Commented on 2009-11-29 00:27:34 In reply to Trebby
Posted by Trebby
I've never really liked these games and movies.
Yes. I've never really liked these games either
Commented on 2009-11-29 03:54:48 In reply to PlumbDrumb
It gets more and more difficult as the game goes. Keep in mind that the videos only show the very first chapter of the game.
Commented on 2009-11-29 04:39:11
Common introductory stuff?
What about the length of the game?
Commented on 2009-11-29 12:13:36 In reply to PlumbDrumb
Apparently it's another weakness of the game, maybe around 6 or 7 hours. A bit more maybe if it really gets harder until the end (or if you play in the hardest difficulty setting). As I said, I didn't complete the game so I don't really know for sure.
Commented on 2009-11-29 14:13:30
I definately want to pick this game up some point, il perhaps buy it on pc to hopefully eliminate the tearing and have it nicer looking.
Commented on 2009-11-29 18:06:25
if it's 6-7 hours long iit's a bit more then average of the type of this game. So it's not a weakness it's more or less the weakness of the entire genre.
Commented on 2009-11-29 20:24:54
well, that isn't really a strength either, is it?
Commented on 2009-11-30 13:34:56 In reply to blmbox
Posted by blmbox
Is it just me, or does this look pretty sweet graphically? Shame that the gameplay seems to be sub-par.
looks about on-par with homecoming to me.
Commented on 2009-12-01 01:09:28 In reply to KORNdog
Posted by KORNdog
looks about on-par with homecoming to me.
Agreed. Survival horror is, well, not surviving very well these days. Even Silent Hill has fallen so far as to be legitimately compare to Saw, which is looking like one of the best survival horror games of the recent years, since RE turned into a shooter and SH jumped the zombie shark.
Commented on 2009-12-01 13:49:25 In reply to phreakinpher
Posted by phreakinpher
Agreed. Survival horror is, well, not surviving very well these days. Even Silent Hill has fallen so far as to be legitimately compare to Saw, which is looking like one of the best survival horror games of the recent years, since RE turned into a shooter and SH jumped the zombie shark.
SIREN was really good as far as pure horror titles are concerned, everything else has gone all "action horror" now. which isnt technically a bad thing since dead space was amazing, but it's kinda sad at the same time.

About the game
  • Saw
  • PC, X360, PS3
  • Published by Konami
  • French release: Available
  • US release: Available

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