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Review: Bound on PS4 is a short but emotional experience

17 Aug 16

Does anybody remember the game Journey? Well Bound on PS4 is similar to it in a lot of ways and it includes a cryptic narrative. 

We're no going to discuss the story here in Bound, but it's very powerful and emotional when you play it. It's open to interpretation of course, but I became invested in the narrative until the very end of it. 

At its very core, this game is a platformer as you have to jump and do other things in order to navigate your way through the levels. There aren't many enemies in this game which might disappoint some people that want to see a lot of action. 

The thing that prevents Bound from being truly engaging from a gameplay standpoint is that it's too easy. Because of the lack of enemies, you can breeze through the levels at a blistering pace and complete it in less than three hours. 

To make things even more easier for players, there are no consequences if you fall off and die during the levels. You can die as many times as you want and the game just restarts you at the same position you fell off from. 

The only type of deadly obstacles you have to watch out for is the environment itself. Sometimes the levels can rotate in different ways so you have to find the right path to stay on the ground. In other times, some deadly spikes/doors try and kill you, although they are easy to get by.

When the spiky things try and kill you, you can dodge them by just "dancing". The main character does a graceful dance that allows her to dodge deadly traps and more. The dancing mechanic blends well with the theme of the game and it also mixes perfectly with the beautiful soundtrack. 

I do think dancing is a metaphor for the main point of the story, although I'm not going to discuss it in this review. There is a reason why this game has a lack of violence and you might notice this when you first play this game. The soundtrack is melodic as the piano playing in the background helps you to relax. 

As you can see from the screenshots we have provided, Bound's graphics look very similar to that of Journey. Unlike in Journey though, the level design is more unique and you have to know where you are going. The levels are still linear, although they can change up to try and confuse you. It sometimes feels like you're playing Inception.  

As aforementioned, the game can be completed in less than three hours which is a shame. I feel this game was way too short and could have been much longer. Bound should have also added puzzles because the levels are far too easy to complete. 

As a whole, Bound is a great emotional experience as the story draws you in. Sadly as a video game, it's not challenging enough for players as it's too easy and short. 

Verdict: 6.5/10


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