Reader Review: Deadly Premonition

Reader Review: Deadly Premonition

I haven’t had the chance to play Deadly Premonition, despite the fact it’s been out for a while, but it’s attracted quite the cult following. Jonno Phillips is on hand with this reader review to help guide you through one of the strangest games ever conceived.

And thanks to Madman, the best Reader Review each month will receive a handful of the most recently released Blu-rays and DVDs.

Here we have a true B video game. A game that could be best described as Alan Wake meets Heavy Rain in the bar at Silent Hill while Twin Peaks is on the telly. It’s split the gaming media straight down the middle. Is it serious? Or is it’s tongue firmly planted in it’s cheek? There’s only one way to find out. Welcome to Greenvale…

Loved The Story: A rather stock standard murder mystery tale to be honest but it manages to keep you gripped throughout the entire play time because of…

The Characters: Between a detective who is quite particular about his biscuits, an eccentric with a personal aide who speaks in rhymes and woman who talks to a pot of coffee you certainly won’t be bored for a choice of conversation during your time in Greenvale.

The World: This is what Alan Wake should have had. A fully open world of the town where the characters you interacted with went around doing their day to day business. And believe it or not they aren’t always on the same routine day in and day out, characters will act differently depending on things such as the weather or time of day. Much fun to be had in a little light stalking here in Greenvale.

The Price: I was able to pick up a copy on import for around $32 including postage. And for a game that has 20 hours or more (if you do side missions etc) that’s pretty good value for money.

The Music: Guaranteed to stick in your head. And amazingly inappropriate most of the time too. Nothing really says “Brutal Murder” like some light jazz with a side dish of whistling.

The Scares: It’s generally nothing more than the odd bad guy jumps out or a bit of creepy moaning or a baby screaming in the background… but it sent the odd chill down my spine which is more than sufficient.

Hated The Map: Oh how a little zooming out would be appreciated. It’s just so close that you have to scan all around the map just to figure out where you want to go if you aren’t planning on heading to the next story specific mission. It very quickly became the bane of my existence.

Car Handling: Like a Jack Russel dosed to the eyeballs on speed.

Car Speed: Like the same Jack Russel after being sawn off at the knees.

The Combat: Horrible, like Resident Evil 4 but bad. And enemies take millions of bullets to kill. However if you set the difficulty to easy it does actually make it a lot more tolerable.

Availability: Unfortunately it isn’t actually available in Australia, however there are no real import woes due to the fact it isn’t actually banned here. So it’s only a slight inconvenience, but an inconvenience nonetheless.

Graphics: Now, I’m by no means a fanatic about this but it does look a little rough in places which will certainly turn some people off. And Francis York Morgans smile… brrrrr.

All in all the positives far outweigh the negatives for me and what some people have taken as badly written dialogue is in fact quite cleverly written and at times satirical and hilarious. Since picking the game up I’ve done nothing but ramble on about it to friends and drag them in front of my TV to show them particular sections. And hell for a budget price what do you really have to lose?


  • I agree about the car handling – Shame it was near on the end of the game when i found out doing the scrapyard side missions gave your car better stats. Once I had morgans normal car (the one he crashed at the start) back it was soooo much better!

  • @doubleDizz …not as far as I’m aware. But boy am I glad you said that… it’s actually been driving me mental since I played the game. I could think of the face but not the name.

    @Jimu Hsien locking on does make it a little easier but just free aiming can be a little twitchy. particularly when you want to go for the headshots to get the enemies down fast.

  • @Wyldcat34… yeah I found out several things like that too only after I had finished it as well… like the side mission that allows you to get a radio so you can fast travel rather than driving for miles.
    …perhaps on my next play through…

  • Driving? Nobody told me told me there was driving before I bought the game! Now I’m scared. I hate driving. I suck at driving. Please tell me the use of cars is only minimal. Please!

    • Well… there is quite a bit of driving because of the open world nature of the game. So kind of bad news for you there. But in terms of the actual use of cars it’s never really integral to the plot or anything it’s just so you can get from point a to point b. However as I mentioned before you can get a radio (number 5)which will help out a little.

    • Find a guide and get the radio ASAP!

      People wo like driving don’t like it in this game.
      It’s not like you have to be GOOD at driving though, just remember to fill up the tank.

  • …also I just realized that I said that Sigourney talks to a pot of coffee… not quite sure where my brain was there. Must of been channeling York.

    And has anyone else that has played it been tempted to try the infamous Sinner Sandwich?

    • Well I say go for it. As what you described is pretty much exactly what happened to me… I was looking through an old magazine that was previewing it and that then provoked me to go online to research it and that was when I discovered it’s unique charms.
      I’ve not looked back since.

  • Hated it personally. Felt like it belonged on PS1 or something. Controls alone were enough to steer lose my interest in the game, walking around was just painful. Didn’t even finish the first level before I gave up, just doesn’t feel like it belongs on this gen of console. It really is a love it or hate it game 🙁

    • Budget title, dood. Not to be compared with the games that have all that financial backing.

      It is clunky, and hard to play but they’ve made a fantastic story.

      The shooting bits were tacked on at the end of development because marketing or whoevr thought it needed shooting. It’s a great game if you give it a chance!

    • It’s good to see someone who took the complete opposite opinion. Perhaps you should write a review for it too so that both sides of the argument that seem to surround this game are covered.
      It’s really quite good that it was able to make such a split in peoples opinions though. It made for some more interesting conversations other than arguing about whether or not Halo was better than COD.
      I agree about the shooting being tacked on… yeah the story was what kept on pulling me through until the end. I just wanted to see what would happen next. And some of those conversations… the one with the serial killer and his skull bowls… as soon as the music kicked in over the top I was on the floor howling with laughter.

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