Metascore
68

Mixed or average reviews - based on 79 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 79
  2. Negative: 5 out of 79
  1. Jul 30, 2012
    84
    Deadlight is a fantastic game with wonderful platforming segments and magnificent art direction. It is a bit short, but is probably one of the best downloadable titles on XBLA right now.
  2. Aug 1, 2012
    85
    Tequila Works show how to inject fresh ideas into a theme as worn-out as the zombie apocalypse. The mixture of puzzles and challenging fights works extraordinarily well to make Deadlight one of the most atmospheric XBLA games of the year.
  3. Jul 31, 2012
    60
    You could finish Deadlight in a single sitting and forget about it completely by the next day. Not because the game is actually bad – it's mostly quite enjoyable – but it's too slight and unimaginative to make a lasting impression. It has some nice ideas and sections, but more than anything else it made us want to go back and finish Shadow Complex for a sixth time.
  4. 45
    The environments and the reasonably compelling flashback atmosphere lend what would otherwise be a pretty poor game a glimmer of hope.
  5. 82
    Some of the technical issues hold the game back; however, I for one will keep coming back to Deadlight as it is an experience I will want to enjoy for weeks if not months on end.
  6. Aug 29, 2012
    70
    Despite its very short campaign and some other flaws Deadlight is a strong title with great atmosphere. [10/2012, p.73]
  7. 86
    Deadlight is a blast that reminds me of a game I loved in my youth (Flashback) without soiling that nostalgia or feeling like a blatant ripoff. It's a bit short, but it's perfectly suited for spending a lazy summer evening with.
  8. Aug 8, 2012
    60
    There are elements of the game that are both enjoyable and disappointing and for me I would recommend saving your money until this Summer Arcade title gets put on sale and just enjoy the summer.
  9. Aug 8, 2012
    50
    Full of unrealised potential, Deadlight is a passable game that's as bland as the cookie-cutter zombies it presents.
  10. Aug 8, 2012
    60
    Deadlight shows a lot of promise but ultimately falls short.
  11. Aug 9, 2012
    70
    Deadlight will take you around 3-4 hours to finish. It's not the longest of games, and there's a big chance you probably won't want to play it through again. That said, it must be noted that Tequila Works should be commended for trying to spice up the use of zombies, and while that doesn't make this game great – silly things like that dumb underground lair spoil it - Deadlight is still an enjoyable title to play. When it's at its best, the game is a thrilling experience that tickles nostalgia for the genre it represents.
  12. Jul 30, 2012
    40
    A beautiful intro does not a great game make, and the full product is a disappointment to say the absolute least. Tequila clearly has a lot of talent and an ability to craft genuinely intimidating, memorable environments -- Deadlight demonstrates the wealth of inventiveness the studio possesses. Yet it feels squandered on lazy design in the second chapter and mistreatment of player trust in the third.
  13. Jul 30, 2012
    80
    With Deadlight, Tequila Works has clearly taken inspiration from the critical and commercial recent success of Limbo on Xbox Live Arcade. The gameplay in this original survivalist horror title nods to PlayDead's masterpiece, but that is not a bad thing.
  14. Jul 31, 2012
    60
    For the game's opening third, this all works brilliantly as you move through claustrophobic, yet forgiving, urban environments. But a trip to the city sewers further down the line places platforming over survival and reveals that Deadlight's controls just aren't up to the task.
  15. Jul 30, 2012
    70
    Deadlight was a fantastic idea whose execution just didn't do it the justice it deserved. It's too short, its challenges too cheap at times, and it occasionally loses focus of what it wants to be-and yet, at the same time, Deadlight is also a surprisingly beautiful adventure through a world of chaos that does more right than it does wrong.
  16. Jul 30, 2012
    70
    So Deadlight can lay claim to being as smart and atmospheric as previous 2D XBLA hits such as Limbo or Shadow Complex. There's one problem, though: Deadlight is an incredibly slight experience. A single play-through comes in at under two hours, and that running time's been bloated by an uncomfortable number of trial-and-error moments.
  17. 60
    Still, Deadlight has many visually striking and mechanically satisfying moments in store for you... In some ways Tequila Works might just have reached their goal: The punishing qualities of their game does indeed evoke its older cousins – Flashback and Another World. It's just a shame that they had to use the wrong means to do so.
  18. Jul 30, 2012
    70
    Like its original and captivating art-style, Deadlight's gameplay has shadows and lights to share with players, but it's quite a good first-try for Tequila Workd team.
  19. Aug 11, 2012
    70
    Deadlight a game is quite interesting to know and to finish, but after that we are left with practically nothing to do.
  20. Jul 31, 2012
    70
    Even being extremely short, Deadlight is one of most captivating downloadable experiences available right now on Xbox Live.
  21. Jul 30, 2012
    90
    Deadlight is probably the best downloadable title on the market right now, but that comparison does the game a disservice. Tequila Works have taken a step further to reduce the gap between retail games and downloadable titles and Deadlight will likely be the shining star of this year's Summer of Arcade.
  22. Aug 20, 2012
    80
    Deadlight, long-awaited highlight of this Summer of Arcade, does not disappoint the fans. Mixing platforming, action and survival in a wise manner, the title conquer all the favors of the public.
  23. Aug 1, 2012
    70
    Yes, Deadlight is a short game, one that feels especially brisk when the puzzles lack challenge.
  24. Jul 30, 2012
    80
    Creating a compelling zombie game in a generation with too many of them is a hard task. Tequila Works manages to do this while successfully merging it with the unlikely action-platforming genre. The lame narrative and lack of consistent challenge can't overshadow the fun I had with Deadlight. I'm crossing my fingers for a sequel.
  25. Jul 30, 2012
    50
    Deadlight has all the style, substance, and gameplay you could want, with none of the originality you need. The word "cliche" never left my mind, even for an instant. If you loved Limbo and want to recreate that experience, you could spend $15 on this, or you could just play the game you already own and have a much better time.
  26. Aug 14, 2012
    60
    Deadlight had everything to be the perfect Summer of Arcade killer game. But its Prince of Persia like mechanics seem as dated as their reference, and it comes a little bit short of the expectations we had for it.
  27. Aug 19, 2012
    70
    It's full of a unique dark atmosphere and character, but its very short campaign will leave you wanting more.
  28. Aug 1, 2012
    40
    Deadlight could have been something great. Unfortunately, it's as mindless as the zombies it features.
  29. Jul 30, 2012
    50
    Deadlight, on the other hand, has an entire one third of the game that feels like it could have been utterly discarded. What's even more jarring is that the third act can also invoke that same feeling of redundancy. The game starts off as a bang, then descends into this fairly uninteresting second act, before presenting a largely uninteresting on the nose finale.
  30. Jul 30, 2012
    65
    In Deadlight you play as an ordinary man instead of an indestructible hero, who just wants to survive in a rotten world. It's one of the graphically prettiest games on Xbox Live Arcade to date, but the gameplay unfortunately doesn't reach the same heights and the length of the game is disappointingly short.
User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 187 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 37
  2. Negative: 10 out of 37
  1. Aug 7, 2012
    4
    I will keep this short.
    Amazing graphics.
    Amazing atmosphere.
    Shocking length of gameplay.
    Shocking length of story (It ends abruptly. I
    thought I still had hours up my sleeve.)
    Voice acting is terrible sucks the believability out of the situation.
    The dialogue is shocking beyond belief.
    The control scheme is clunky. (It just doesn't quite work the way you want it to...intuitively)
    A large portion of the level design at one particular point is jarring by comparison to the rest of the game and, as a result, becomes a struggle to enjoy.
    Shocking story in general. This game probably boasts the worst closing moments of a video game. Badly written. Nonsensical. And whole bunch of other bad words are all that can describe it.
    The achievements are not achievements...they are gifts.
    No replayability, you will collect everything on the first try because the game is that linear. There might be a couple of items you miss, (if you aren't a curious gamer) but a quick scene select at the end of the game sees you find 'said item' in a matter of minutes.
    1200 MP is over-priced for something that is under-delivered - This game needed to be twice as long at least.
    Puzzles are lame and easily solved...I'm not actually sure if, by definition, they can be called puzzles.

    Overall, this game is disappointing. I had such a big smile on my face when I started the opening levels. I even boasted it to my friends and showed them some of what I had already done.
    Within 20 minutes of actually playing the game properly I realised my mistake and the fact that arcade games on xbox live a non-refundable. Don't make the same mistake I did. Wait for this game to drop in price, or, better yet, wait for shadow complex 2...if it ever comes out.
    Full Review »
  2. Aug 2, 2012
    5
    Honestly....wait for a price drop. Things start out good with a very L4D feeling to the world and characters. Voice acting is decent although the main character, Randall Wayne, reactions randomly alternates between realistic and just plain bored. Gameplay is mostly solid with some light platforming and puzzle solving despite the sometimes wonky controls.

    Sadly, and perhaps fittingly, everything goes downhill as soon as you enter the sewers. Now as any fan of Spoony knows, sewer levels always suck...but apparently nobody told the folks at Tequila Works that info. Whoever at that studio thought it would be fun to send players through a gauntlet of trial-and-error death traps deserves a swift kick to the junk. There is simply no way to get through them your first time because they give zero margin for error, and you will have no way of knowing whats coming before it happens. Even if you happen to have the clairvoyance to know that the dual wall blades will come together instead of going in the same direction (like the previous visually identical pair you encountered!) you will still die constantly because Wayne only does what you want half the time. You have to be be perfect with timing your jumps or he will fall just short of a ledge he needed to grab. Oh and did I mention that Wayne can't swim....at all...instantly drowning in any body of water deeper than chest high. Even after you manage to drag yourself back to the surface these problems will hound you the entire remainder of the game. And that is what kills any enjoyment to be had here. What was a simple but fun zombie platformer action game just becomes a slog. You will die so often because of something you had no way of knowing would happen and given no time to react. It's not the good kind of challenge that comes from skill and mastery, it's just cheap deaths over and over until eventually figure out the one vague solution to move on. It really just starts to feel like artificial difficulty to pad the game out.

    As for the story the fact that its set in the mid 80's is barely touched on and hardly noticeable. The hidden collectibles offer some vague hints as to what caused the outbreak but its never really explained nor matters. And finally the ending was as predictable and stupid as the final segment leading up to it was frustrating.

    The ideas and beginning are pretty dang good, but is it worth paying $15? No. Wait for it to drop to $10 or (preferably) less. Or just play the free demo and leave it at that...
    Full Review »
  3. Aug 5, 2012
    5
    I'll start off by saying that it's not a terrible game, and a 5 by my standards is only moderately below average. I often enjoy games that I would call a 7, or even a 6. There is some enjoyment to be had in this game, but not much in my opinion. First off, the I didn't find the story compelling in the slightest. This is for several reasons. The whole zombie apocalypse has been done to death, and the "spin" they put on it just didn't do it for me (i.e. calling zombies "shadows" doesn't add much). While the art itself was solid, I didn't care for the cutscenes. The comic book-esque, still-frame visual style clashed with the straightforward dialogue and it came off as a little cheesy. Also, I just didn't care for the main character; it couldn't sympathize with his plight, and his constant whining about his family annoyed me more than it instilled sympathy. The secondary villains weren't explained; they just seemed to be there for no real reason other than to give some variety to the enemy types and set pieces. A lot of the story felt like filler; it didn't really feel like a logical string of a events (save a few). Much of the game just seemed like a series of placeholders that the developers filled in hopes to change up the gameplay. And the story element suffered for it. Finally, I thought that the twist ending was laughable, but I'll spare the spoilers. I could live with that, though. I've enjoyed plenty of games where I didn't care about the story; my biggest qualm is the gameplay and design. For starters, I didn't care for the controls. They weren't necessarily broken; they were just unintuitive. For instance dropping down from a ledge in pretty much every game that I've ever played has been down and jump... not this game. That, by itself, doesn't seem like a huge issue, I know, but many things like that began to compound. Another thing is that ledge-grabbing was treated more like a prompt, rather than actually jumping and grabbing a ledge. In some instances, I would end up jumping underneath a ledge because I pressing a direction instead of standing right below it and just pressing jump. When you are hanging on a wall, you press jump to climb up, unless you are just switching to the other side, then you press right (or left). Again, this may seem benign, however there are parts in the game where that distinction is not always clear, and your life literally depends on knowing that. There are countless instances where I didn't feel my deaths were my fault, but rather because of an unintuitive, and slightly sluggish control scheme. I would like to preface this next section by saying there are a few clever puzzles and design choices, but it seems like for every one thing they did right, they did two things wrong. Something that annoyed me until the end of the game was the prompts and indicators. Everything from ledges, to doors, to almost everything you could interact with was highlighted in some way, even in some areas where they didn Full Review »