Generally favorable reviews - based on 63 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 55 out of 63
  2. Negative: 1 out of 63
  1. 78
    It's too bad that the AI and gameplay mechanics couldn't be smoothed out a bit more to match the impressive visual presentation. There's a lot to like about The Darkness, even if it doesn't fully come together in the end.
  2. A remarkable action game that tells a compelling story from start to finish.
  3. A truly unique experience from start to finish, The Darkness is one of those games that will hook you in and steal your soul.
  4. The Darkness is truly a brilliant ray of light during this otherwise abysmal summer gaming drought.
  5. Interactive storytelling is rarely this good, and there are few game endings that make you sit back and think, “Man, what if I did this instead?” like this one does. For its amazing narrative and believability of characters, and the twisted joys that come from being a slave of a demon, The Darkness will keep you enthralled, even when the gameplay lags a little behind.
  6. 80
    It's the closest thing we've seen to an HD-gen "Silent Hill," except that in The Darkness you get to play as that venerable franchise's ultimate evil monstrosity, Pyramid Head, clothed in the flesh of a mafia hit man.
  7. The thing that really marks The Darkness out, we'll repeat, is its "minute-to-minute gameplay". You can't argue with that. It's a game which offers thrills arguably as intense as anything the genre has to offer. It is, for the most part, an extraordinarily entertaining game with precious little fat around the edges,and often technically stunning.
  8. 75
    As strangely uneven, poorly paced, and ultimately unsatisfying as The Darkness is, it remains worth checking out for its unusual ideas, twisted gameplay elements, and uniquely dark atmosphere.
  9. The Darkness is excellent; if judged solely on presentation and graphics, it would be one of the greatest games of all time. Even with the gameplay flaws thrown in, it's still pretty great, since the single-player experience is wonderfully cinematic and tells an excellent story.
  10. While the single player experience is excellent, the Multiplayer modes seem pretty tacked on.
  11. The handicapped shooting elements, the inconsequential mini-games, and the lack of connection between them will probably turn off diehard shooter fans. It’s not the biggest game, nor the most technical, but it is original—absurd and effective despite its faults.
  12. 90
    But it also feels like a more polished game, and the base mechanics work extremely well by the time you reach the end of the single-player campaign. It doesn't quite have Riddick's pacing, due to the open city that asks you to find your own way through, but it presents a better feeling of accomplishment and familiarity by the end.
  13. With it’s mix of stealth and supernatural tactics combined with the occasional gunplay, The Darkness is a great addition to the library of any mature gamer looking for a frightfully good time. You might play this game in the dark but you’ll be sleeping with the lights on.
  14. While we loathe its draconian just-one-save system, it's a stunning achievement that'll keep you riveted from its startlingly realistic opening car chase to its final, epic massacre. It's enthralling, darkly comic, shockingly visceral and able to bring you close to its characters in a way that few games do.
  15. Its story is one of the most interesting and engaging stories (albeit dark) that I've ever seen in a video game.
  16. 40
    I was looking forward to it, but left very disappointed. It’s completely playable. Being about 7 hours long helps but I spent the entire game waiting for it to get good, to make sense, to make a case for all the incongruous elements of design, gameplay and story, and then it ended.
  17. 85
    A fantastic game with an engaging story that only manages to slip up towards the end. The unforgiving amounts of violence are enjoyable and the demonic powers more than make up for its lack of innovation in the gunplay department.
  18. The Darkness is, quite simply, an excellent game and deserves its place as one of the finest shooters and finest examples of video game storytelling in recent memory.
  19. Those who play games for their mechanics and nothing more will be disappointed, but if you, like us, are the type of gamer who longs for escapism, for originality, for style and for panache, then you simply must play this game. Every component part has been meticulously and diligently placed for the purposes of immersion. [Aug 2007, p.100]
  20. Quality visuals, engaging storylines and intense action give this FPS the power to rip open the genre's ribcage and pump life into its formulaic heart.
  21. Oodles of action that feels like "Riddick" in all the right ways. [Sept 2007, p.72]
  22. Even with its faults, it's impossible to dislike The Darkness. It's such a stunningly put together game that succeeds far more often than it fails, with storytelling and direction that puts many other games to shame.
  23. I love it when I feel like a game has shown me something new. [Aug 2007, p.66]
  24. Keeping the "set" locations small allows for some impressive and immersive detail--throw in quality script and voice acting, and the whole experience is compelling enough (and very well paced) to transcend its brief playtime. [Aug 2007, p.74]
  25. The Darkness baptizes you in its unholy immersive waters, lingering in your memory well after you've shut down the console -- and well after you've shut off the lights. Its psychological horror, plus its polished performances, minus any mind-numbing pace of pre-packaged FPS meals-ready-to-eat, equals a nuanced and pendulous journey down one man's dark, downward spiral.
  26. The game's biggest problem is all the filler between the reasonably exciting combat sequences. This New York City consists of two subway stations and about eight neighborhoods separated by long loading screens. You'll get sent back and forth across them all. Get this key. Visit that character. Trigger this sequence. Kill that guy. Along the way, we counted exactly two (2!) optional missions.
  27. More of an experience than a game. Great storytelling and an almost paranoid attention to detail and characters work so well that you can overlook the obvious shortcomings of the action that contains no challenge whatsoever. [Sept 2007]
  28. A great example of how licenses can work in videogames when given time and devotion, something that you can give in return for this brilliant piece of video gaming.
  29. 85
    The Darkness is an experience first and something you play second. If you can get your head around that you’ll find plenty here for your hard earned cash.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 176 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 49 out of 58
  2. Negative: 7 out of 58
  1. DickS
    Jan 13, 2010
    The excellent story makes up for virtually all the clunkiness of the engine. Defiantly one of my top two favorite games. Starbreeze has a The excellent story makes up for virtually all the clunkiness of the engine. Defiantly one of my top two favorite games. Starbreeze has a nice engine that delivers realistic game play but it needs a MAJOR upgrade to compete with todays games and fix the unrefinement that bogs the game down. Full Review »
  2. Oct 22, 2010
    a intresting game with a really good story for a FPS game . this game was kind of a suprise to me . i really liked the powers you get and theya intresting game with a really good story for a FPS game . this game was kind of a suprise to me . i really liked the powers you get and they are very useful and fun to wach in use. playing a villian i thought was a nice touch out to take down your uncle for trying to kill you. the graphics are very well done the story grabs you nicely . the gun play is a mixed bag the up close and personal kills look great but range shooting is very iffy .the online is a giant mess and should never be played it was very tacked on . i would have liked to see a sequel to this game. Full Review »
  3. Dec 13, 2013
    Although short in terms of the games I usually play (Oblivion, Morrowind, Skyrim and the like), the Darkness proves that not all games have toAlthough short in terms of the games I usually play (Oblivion, Morrowind, Skyrim and the like), the Darkness proves that not all games have to be monumentally long to be superb. You really get a feel for the characters both dark and light. The game was a pleasure from start to finish. Full Review »