Devastation Review
Digitalo: Developer
Arush: Publisher

D is for Digitalo Heavy firepower More urban goodness

Devastation is a strange animal and is bound to be misunderstood. It's a game that has many different faces and tries to do many different things. Is it successful? We'll find out.

Digitalo lures you in with the following promises printed right on the box:

"32 levels packed with over 40 real-world and futuristic weapons".


"Story driven, objective-based single-player plus online multiplayer games".


"Powerful next-gen Unreal engine for eye-popping visuals".

Oh, check for sure.

"Fight alongside highly intelligent NPC teamates that you command".

Woah, hold on there. I'm not so sure I can check off this one. We'll look at this as we continue on, but let's head to the next quote for the sake of continuity.

"Ultra-realistic AI creates lifelike enemy and teamate behaviors".

Hmmm, I have a problem with this one too. Let's move on, but first the plot.

Corona! Devastation takes place in year 2075, right here on Earth. It's post-apocalyptic as you can expect. People are destitute, owning little more than the clothes on their backs and technology is waning. (We human beings love to envision a dark and dreary future, don't we?) Yet somehow, loads of high tech weapons are lying about en masse, and despite the utter lack of apparent human population (other than your own small squad), there exists a mega corporation exploiting some truly groundbreaking technology, and funding Pacification Squads to squelch the uprising of the few. What product this mega corporation became "mega" on is unclear. How it exists in a diminished world, or who exactly it is they seek to conquer is never really answered. Along the way, you uncover a nano-regeneration technology that Grathius Corporation (bad) is seeking to use in its bid to aggrieve your rag-tag troop of fighters (aptly, if not uniquely) named The Resistance.

The plot is unfolded in a generously apportioned number of in-game cut-scenes and scripted sequences. The fact that the cut-scenes are done in-game requires the use of player and NPC models that are of modest enough detail that the game runs efficiently on the listed minimum system specs. That is to say, don't expect mouth movement synchronized with the voice acting, something that other games like Return to Castle Wolfenstein are able to pull off reasonably well since the models used in the cut-scenes never show up in-game. However... not possible here, and that's a design decision that I can live with. There are no branching plots or "conversation trees", you get what you see.

I'll go ahead and admit up front that I'm a sucker for a good cyberpunk environment and that I have a high degree of suspension of disbelief. The plot holes and soft storyline will not satisfy those of you that seek a detailed fiction along the likes of, say, Philip K. Dick. To be fair, most singleplayer first-person-shooters don't seek to dazzle you with an intrigue of that proportion, but rather to serve as a vehicle for the setting and the action. This it does, and it does it well. A short beginning movie, a few sidearms, some twisted landscape, and I was ready to kick some Grathius butt.