App Reviewed on: Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
User Interface Rating:
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You'd never think that Dead by Daylight would make a suitable mobile game, but somehow NetEase has managed to pull off a damn good adaption.
Horror survival games are a tough one to portray properly on such a small screen, but Identity V is a tidy experience with some occasionally fiddly controls. If you're going to play through the tutorial, however, make sure you're not in a rush.
One, two, he's coming for you
For those unfamiliar to Identity V, it's a multiplayer game between five players. Four are Survivors and one person is the Hunter.
Its controls are pretty simple. You look about by sliding left and right on the screen, move by pushing up on the left side of the screen, and interact with a small number of options on the right side.
As a survivor, you have to search for and tinker with a number of decoding machines on the level. Once your target has been reached, you can then open one of the map's gates and flee off into the night screaming "FREEDOM."
As a big, burly Hunter, it's your job to stop them from escaping. Though you're not as agile as your victims, you've got a big weapon to swing – two hits will knock a Survivor down – and can tie them to a rocket chair which will eventually send them off into the sky.
While that sounds like a random course of action, any of you who've played Dead by Daylight will know that the rocket chair replaces a rusty ol' hook, just to keep things slightly more PG, y'know.
Survivors can rescue their teammates from the chairs and specific characters can heal them up. However, you've actually got to work together as a team to do that and hope that the Hunter isn't a dirty camper.
It does seem pretty one-sided in favour of the Hunter, but you can use the environment to your advantage, such as knocking over a wooden pallet to stun them or jumping through a series of windows.
Rather than just throwing you into this murder game, a tale is woven at the start to introduce the world and its characters in a very lengthy tutorial. You play as a private detective suffering from memory loss as he tries to piece together what happened.
Though, none of the backstory really matters since the multiplayer game is the real star of the show. Every scene that takes place with the detective just helps you learn the basics and shows you how to work through your characters' skill trees.
Just for that added bit of personalisation you can also customise your Survivors and Hunter in the store, picking out different clothes, accessories, and skins for them to run about in
Three, four, he's at your door
Despite it being a clean and well-made experience it does still have a couple of iffy areas. It does feel comfortable on a phone, but when trying to look around using the right side of the screen it felt like I was battling the control panel for space.
As with any of these types of games, your enjoyment relies heavily on other players behaving themselves and cooperating. If you have a Hunter that catches you and camps you while you die, that's no fun at all. In the same sense if your teammates leave you to die, that's also no fun.
I'm still not totally sold on the idea that the deep detective introduction was wholly necessary if it doesn't crop up much throughout the game. It makes for a bit of a different tutorial, sure, but it also wastes a lot of time and feeds you a lot of dialogue that isn't particularly relevant.
Saying that, Identity V does a staggeringly good job, especially as a free to play game. So far I've not hit any paywalls or experienced any pay-to-win nonsense, and that's always nice to see.
It's not a scary game, but it is rather a lot of fun if you play as a Hunter or get a good team.