Play A Way Out. That’s all I need to say… But I will go further! Find a friend who has 6 hours free, sit down, split the price of the game between you and get ready for a gaming experience like no other.
I had avoided lots of trailers and reviews for A Way Out. Not particularly because of spoilers, more because it wasn’t hugely on my radar. A friend reminded me about this game and the joy was he could buy a single copy of the game, and we could both play it online via co-op. Luckily we both had 6 hours free the day after release and man, we had a hell of a time.
As you may know the game follows 2 men who have to escape prison, this forms about 20% of the game. Leo, who I played, is more gun ho and a bit of a rebel, the other is Vincent who is more stealthy and will usually have a more logical approach. There are quite a few moments where you need to decide who’s option to take, for example knock out the guard or trick him; you follow their story after, on the run from the police both having ties to a certain criminal. I really don’t want to spoil the game as the story is so strong – All I’ll say is that overall it was an amazing story and is one of my favourite game endings of all time. It’s well written throughout and keeps you entirely entranced the whole way through.
The gameplay is the other hugely strong point, almost every new area in the game played differently, each requiring co-op. The screen is always split so you’re always aware of what the other player is doing, preparing you to make your move, and the split screen is never invading and works so well for this game. Escaping prison involved distracting guards to obtain certain items and working as a team to get around security, relying on each other for everything. Quite often there were mini game type controls – The action pieces are all vastly different also, with some examples being a car chase with a shotgun, stealthing through the woods (Like a farcry stealth mission), an Uncharted-style shoot out and my favourite, the hospital sequence. In this moment you each had the screen to yourselves but it ran as one action sequence, going between the two of you. My god it was pulled off so well! The only downside was that it was sometimes a bit clunky, but then I also have to take into account that it is a £25 game that only 1 of you needs to buy…
The game is also hugely explorable, every area has fun mini games to take part in and adds a lot of coco- fun; there’s baseball, connect 4, arcade games, weights, arm wrestling and so so much more. I had never played a game where every moment felt entirely different and every area had such vastly different activities whilst requiring a lot of coordination between you and a friend.
As well as the gameplay mechanics it’s actually a very well crafted game in the way that it looks. I never had an issue with the way it looked and really enjoyed every environment, the quieter levels had lots of things you could interact with and a lot to explore (There’s one level at a farm house where you can explore every room + garage + barn + more, it’s awesome). The louder more action-centric set pieces are equally as well made and exciting. The characters also all looked great and the settings were brilliant, there’s not a grumble from me about the way it looks at all.
There’s not a tonne more that I can say as it is a short game, but it’s an awesome short game. All I’ll say is find a good mate, set aside a day and do it one sitting with a few beers. You’ll not have as much co-op fun this year as you will here.
+ Fantastic Story
+ Excellent co-op gameplay
+ Extremely varied gameplay
– Occasional clunky movement
– Left me wanting more (not really a negative)
For me, A Way Out gets an 8.5/10