With the new generation of consoles on the way, and the inevitable leaps and bounds forward to be made in the visual department of games, it was hard to not be excited by some of the truly outstanding visual design for the games on display at this years E3. There are many games deserving of mention, but one in particular holds my attention, despite what little was shown. When it was formally announced by DICE and EA, my interest in the technical prowess of all other games ceased, and only Mirror's Edge 2 remained in my thoughts. Mirror's Edge 2 is, by title alone, a guarantee for me that at least one game of this next generation will bring my jaw to the floor.†
Mirror's Edge came at a time when no other "modern" game (though to be fair ME takes place shortly in the future) would dare break the tradition of being gritty and realistic to appeal to the masses of Call of Duty fans. Considering that DICE is the company behind Battlefield, one can't help but wonder what lapse in judgement led to a game so gorgeous get the go ahead. Never mind that the gameplay of Mirror's Edge was something new and ambitious, but the visuals are just so untrue to form for a company like DICE. Modern is what they know, and they are very good at it. The Battlefield series is known for its incredible visual design, with Battlefield 3 being championed as one of the most technically accomplished games of this generation, yet, Mirror's Edge still holds my attention as the DICE game most worthy of praise, at least, for its visuals.
No other AAA game this generation, has so thoroughly impressed me with its bold, vibrant, and unexpectedly gorgeous visual design. The world of Mirror's Edge is one of bright and beautiful colors. Yes, the game was a technical marvel in its own right, but the size of its textures, and fluidity of its animation is not what turns heads. Each of the games many rich environments, are literally bursting at the seams with color.
In a gaming world where AAA first-person shooters are almost bound by law to be filled with dirty browns and dull greys, I can't think of a more eye-catching game than Mirror's Edge. Each of the games nine levels are equally gorgeous in their own rights, each host to their own specific color scheme and tone. It's stunning to see environments so normally designed by art devs with an eye for "realism" be so uncharacteristically aglow with light and color. Offices, warehouses, cargo-ships, alleyways, subway stations, these locations we all know, each somehow made to be a veritable fireworks display of contrasting shades and hues.
Mirror's Edge is no masterpiece, but its visuals and atmosphere kept my eyes glued to my monitor from beginning to end. Visuals of such a vibrant, colorful nature, are rare in a game of this genre. I can only hope (and from the brief glimpses of what was shown, I am very hopeful) that the visuals of Mirror's Edge 2 will be even a fraction as mesmerizing and beautiful as those of the original.