Detroit: Become Human
Detroit Become Human review; what was the greatest achievement we have achieved so far? Our wheel discovery? Invention of writing? Agriculture? Producing planes? Or the step we took to Moon? The answer to this question may vary according to the person, but mankind will always continue to count the most complicated things it has produced as a success. Can a creature with an infinite complexity, like human beings, be produced? ‘Produce’ is a wrong choice of word, ‘imitate’ is a better option for that. Maybe one day, but we, humans, will face the real problem after we do that. An entity like us, who thinks like us, can really be one of us? We are looking for an answer to this question that is so serious and waiting for us in the future; Quantic Dream's latest game, Detroit: Become Human.
It is not a mistake to say that the gaming world has been serving us games with serious amount of cinematics over 20 years. Starting with the Call of Duty series, this current continues to show itself in almost all of today's games. The games are now pushing us into thinking with their stories and philosophies, they are not just entertaining, time-consuming entertainment tools anymore. Quantic Dream is one of the developers who attaches great importance to the story in their productions. The studio proves its success with productions such as Fahrenheit, Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls, and has the lead in storytelling and providing the gamers to change the storyline with their own decisions. However, it would not be a mistake to say that Detroit: Become Human is making the best turn out of their potentials, even if they get successful results in past games. You ask why? Let's try to give the answer.
First of all, I will not give you any spoilers that will disturb the excitement of the game during your review, and I can say that you can read the entire article with peace of mind. A game that is almost entirely in the foreground of the story can be difficult to examine without giving any spoilers from its story, but the deterioration of surprises in a production like Detroit can adversely affect all experience. But I want to briefly tell you the main topic of the story. Detroit: Become Human is telling us a story in the near future. We are at a time when humans took a very big step in the technologic era, artificial intelligence is now touched every aspect of our lives, even they are similar to us, and even difficult to distinguish from us.
These artificial intelligence robots in Detroit are called Android, familiar right? These Androids are so sophisticated that they are being slaved in factories, roads, work places, homes. Large part of society sees the Androids as a machine that works for them. These entities, Androids, which are often despised and repressed, are succeeding in acquiring their own consciousness as a result of some events. In fact, rather than gaining their own consciousness, we can actually say that their conscious are already present and that they have overcome the barriers in their own heads and are free. We are experiencing developing events after this one in the game.
“Artificial intelligence will either be the best thing or the worst thing that comes down to humanity. -Elon Musk.“
We are playing all of the following parts as Androids after Detroit: Become Human's entry into the story. We are able to experience their struggle for liberation, their struggle to overcome the barriers in their heads, their choices in a personal experience. However, although we know that we control the Androids throughout the game, you can empathize with these robots in the game. But there is an interesting situation. I will try to tell you though it's hard to put into the words.
In games where we control a ‘human’ person, we often put ourselves in that character and think what we can do. In other words, the character we play is considered the first person in our imagination. Detroit: Becoming Human has a strange situation while playing it. While I was making a important decision for the characters, even though I was the one who is playing as the character, I could not think "what would I do", I thought "what would I choose for them". The important point here is that I did not succeed even in a game where I could not show emphaty for the robots, and I felt that tomorrow I could face a similar situation if this technology turned into reality. I can not tell you that this is a negative situation. Because even though I could not have emphaty for them, I struggled to make the best choices for their good.
“What will happen to labor force when artificial intelligence comes to the point where it can replace people in cognitive works? What will be the political implications of the gigantic new class of people who are aimless and useless? - Yuval Noah Harari.”
Why do I want to do good things for an entity that I can not even place myself in, where I can not empathize? Why do I sympathize? My mind was full of questions like these continued throughout the game. We think that our souls are making us humans, artificial intelligence without a spirit, is it possible to accept it as one of us? Is the phenomenon called consciousness a really abstract concept? Or are all the beings with their own imagination, empathy, free thinking, inquiry capacity are as valuable as we are? The most important questions that will shape our future is in Detroit: Become Human.
I can hear you are saying: Enough of the philosophy, tell us about the game, I like to hear you talk about the game. I postponed as much as possible because there's nothing we can say on this side that you can see differently, and say wow. A character we control with analog, analog movements we made even to remove something tiny from the floor, and pressing the keys on the screen at the right moment during the action, as well as previous games, are also confronted in Detroit. If you ask for an innovation that has a direct effect on gameplay, I can say that some parts of the game has much wider areas than previous productions and allow you to progress in so much different ways. So much that the different ways you choose can even affect the story of the game. In addition, the results of mistakes that you will make in QTEs that require you to press different keys in a timely manner can be fatal, and you can even lose your main character. Since there is no saving option in game, you do not have the chance to make up your mistakes and try again. For this reason, I recommend you to be alert at any moment, it is possible to get bad results due to the events that occur from anywhere.
Now, of course, if the subject is a Quantic Dream game, our choices in the game are also important. But does this importance really lead to different consequences as explained to us in the trailer? Do we really influence the story? Now that I can’t answer this question, I had to finish the game more than once to answer, but I could not find time for it. But not only at the end of the game, you can see a graph of the decisions at the end of every episode we made during the story. It is not difficult to guess through the graph that the different results can actually make some serious differences. It would not make much sense to think that the elections will be ineffective in a production where even the main characters can die. So I do not mind saying that, yes, your choices can seriously change the course of the game, as well as it affects the fate of the Androids in the game.
“If an artificial intelligence is intelligent enough to pass the Turing test then it is too smart to not pass too.”
I would like to mention a few things that you might be interested in on the gameplay side. Connor, one of our main characters in the game, is an Android detective, as we saw in the demo, and the goal of him is to figure out why Androids became conscious. In the parts you play with Connor, we're a detective trying to figure things out. We are an artificial intelligent Android so we can revive the event with the evidence in the environment and have a chance to deliver the solution. I can say that I liked the Connor parts because he is pushing player to investigate, at least they got away from the classic Quantic Dream gameplay.
Kara, another character in the game, was introduced at the technology demos for PlayStation 3 many years ago. Kara, whom we frequently play as during the game, was personally my favorite character in Detroit. While playing with Kara which you can empathically empathize, I advise you to make your choices as careful as possible, losing her during the game can lead you to lose all your ambition because she makes you love her. The last character, Markus, I will not touch at all because his role on the story is huge, and the smallest detail I can say can create something in your head and ruin the surprises in game. However, I can say that Markus’ character is very detailed, and also the biggest action scenes are confronted when playing with Markus.
Throughout the game the time line flows in a sequential manner, so we don’t go back and forth and get confused like in Beyond Two Souls. The sequential timeline makes the player understand easily for a scenario that is already confusing. We can also understand here that Quantic Dream's main purpose in production is to focus on philosophy rather than gameplay and story. You are constantly making ethical choices throughout the game.
“If we can put forth the intelligence, does it matter it is artificial? ”
There are a few things I would criticize about the production. First of all, I can say that I do not like the dialogue system of the game. We had a similar situation in Fallout 4. I personally did not like the fact that the answers were only to be divided into headings instead of seeing all of them. You also feel that the titles sometimes go almost the same way, and you do not really have a chance to give a different answer. Also, since there is a time limit during the dialogue, I did not have time to think of the consequences. Another criticism is the inconvenience of the game mechanics mentioned above in more detail. I would like to be a in bit more control rather than constantly moving with the joysticks, pressing the keys in time. This will be one of the general criticisms that you will see after the release of the game. The new generation had to go through a really new game system, Quantic Dream. Now we can say that the next time we have a bet.
I would like to say a few words in technical terms before gradually passing the last words. Let's start with the graphics of the game. Detroit: Become Human is one of the productions with the most realistic graphics you can play on the PlayStation 4. I can even say that it's on a level where it can be competed with Uncharted 4. Everything from character models to lighting, from shadows to coating details, from chapter designs to effects, is all the way to the finest detail. If you ask another game of such importance, you will not find any other production than Uncharted series again. In a real sense, you believe that the places you are in are the real places. Quantic Dream has also proven itself in snowy weather, as well as visual effects in rainy weather that have proven itself with Heavy Rain. The snowstorms in the scenes are so amazing, I can say I stopped and stared so many times.
“The day we produce an artificial intelligence with free will, we will have solved how the phenomenon called morality has become, and it will be the greatest discovery to change the history of humanity from the beginning.”
On the voices side, both voice and sound effects are enormous. For example, when you step on a stairway with a carpet in the middle, you hear a different footstep while your foot is on the wood, and a different footstep while your other foot is on the carpet. Such careful attention to details has made a serious contribution to the credibility of the game. The harmony of the music with the scenes is successful, you do not encounter any music clattering your ear. Animations are also stunning, especially with mimics. While the tears of characters slowly flow, you can be touched on your seat. Particularly in the episodes where you play with Kara, many situations where you feel strong emotions are waiting for you.
Now let's get to our last words. Is Quantic Dream's new game Detroit: Become Human, worth playing, worth buying? First of all, if you have slightest curiosity in artificial intelligence, I can say yes directly to this question. If you are far from the subject, but story-based productions are one of your interests, read this review thoroughly from the beginning, and the philosophical issues will attract your interest. We are also faced with a production that is more than 20 hours of game time. Except for the first quartet of the game, Detroit: Become Human is very tempestuous, makes you curious about it. I can say that you will not be disappointed unless you raise your expectations too high. I strongly advise you to personally purchase this game, which will force you with your choices and have a high degree of replaying it.