The stories behind some video games are sometimes unbelievable. Take Bright Memory: Infinite (Gold Edition), the title we will discuss today. Seeing it in action, one would immediately think of an AAA title; so much has been taken of the technical sector of the game.
Surprisingly, Bright Memory was born in 2020 with the title of Bright Memory Episode 1, developed by a single person in his spare time. The game was originally released on PC and Xbox, and as you can guess, it was supposed to be the first piece of an episodic series.
After the feedback from users and critics, however, FYQD Personal Studio and the publisher Playism have decided to make the original title “complete”, and this is where Bright Memory: Infinite Gold Edition is born, coming now also on PlayStation 5 and Nintendo Switch.
If we want to add another piece to this strange story, we can also say that the developer admitted that he used some assets without having the license in the first version of the game. Now that we have told you about this game’s curious backstory let’s find out if Bright Memory: Infinite Gold Edition is also worth playing.
Secret agents, ancient powers, dead who come back to life, ancient creatures … yes, there is everything.
The narrative sector of Bright Memory: Infinite Gold Edition (only Bright Memory from now on) is really … curious. Once the game starts, we find ourselves in the shoes of Shelia, a girl we know little or nothing about, except that she is tasked by the Science Research Organization, of which she is a part, to prevent the military organisation SAI from acquiring an ancient power that can awaken the dead.
From here on, things get stranger and stranger at a whirlwind pace, but to be honest, it only takes five minutes to understand that the game’s story is not to be taken seriously and that it is not one of the focal points of the production.
In some ways, the game seems to mimic Hollywood action films, throwing into the fray a series of more or less sensible ideas that serve as a glue between one scene and another to be able to justify the slaughter of enemy soldiers.
If you are passionate about trash, you could also have fun following this daring storey. Despite being a bad story, it manages to go around and entertain, especially for the curiosity to find out what else the developer has thought of adding to the fray.
What he has focused on is the technology sector. We played the title on PlayStation 5 (but if you still don’t have a next-gen console at the moment, you can opt for an Xbox Series S, available on Amazon). It’s really impressive: while not reaching the most famous AAA titles, the game still manages to impress on a graphic level, to the point that it can be mistaken for a high-budget production.
And it is even more impressive than theatre does not even present serious problems: no drops in frame rate, no slowdowns, fast loading; in short, everything seems to be fine – and to think that the game started its development with only one person driving it is incredible.
We only detected a few sporadic bugs: on one occasion, for example, an enemy was hidden in the vegetation instead of attacking us as expected by the game, and we could not go on until we found and eliminated it. However, these are a few things, especially considering, once again, who is behind this work.
As for the artistic direction, we initially liked oriental settings, but in a short time, they tend to become repetitive, which is paradoxical considering the short duration of the game (and we’ll come back to this later).
No enemy will be able to do anything before us (Bright Memory: Infinite)
Let’s move on to the gameplay now. Bright Memory is a linear shooter without too many frills, in which we will have to defeat hordes of enemies to make our way through the different levels of the game.
At our disposal, we will have several firearms and a katana that will allow us to protect ourselves from enemy blows and strike in close combat.
There is very little to say about the basic gameplay: Bright Memory does the job of any good FPS very well. Weapons are satisfying to use, alternating between several guns and the katana is hugely fun, and sometimes, some enemies require that little bit of extra strategy to take out.
In addition to weapons, we also have some extra powers, some of which can be unlocked or upgraded throughout the adventure. For example, we can attract enemies to us, making them rise in the air and then riddling them with shots; or again, we will have EMP and different types of grenades at our disposal.
In short, there is no lack of choice regarding methods to eliminate our opponents: it will be up to us to decide which approach to use. While lacking any originality or inventiveness, therefore, Bright Memory manages to entertain.
And it’s almost a shame that no scoring mechanism has been implemented in the game because Bright Memory seems to be made for us to make creative and stylish kills. It would have been a good diversion and a way to give replay value to the adventure.
As anticipated, the game is linear: the levels involve going from point A to point B and slaughtering enemies. There are sometimes short sections on vehicles, but these are interludes that do not affect the general experience.
The only distraction from the main mission is relics that allow you to unlock upgrades for Shelia when collected. However, you will hardly want to go out and look for them, especially since you will be perfect killing machines after twenty minutes from the start of the game, simply by using the tools provided to you throughout the story.
A linear shooter that does not present any real news during the adventure risks becoming boring after a short time; how did Bright Memory try to solve the problem?
Simple: the game ends after 2 hours, which is still a step up from the 45 minutes of the original version.
Let’s be clear: we do not want to say that a game should be rated by the time since there are two-hour games that have remained unforgettable in our hearts – because that duration was the perfect one to express their potential, their themes. Their game system. The point is that Bright Memory has time to start that it’s already finished.
The few ideas present do not have room to be expanded, both in the plot (however trash it may be) and gameplay. One almost has the impression of being in front of an elongated demo rather than an entire experience.
In light of this, it becomes even more useless to be damned to empower Shelia: what’s the point if the game ends even before we can get in trouble?
Furthermore, there is no incentive to replay other than to tackle the adventure at a greater difficulty for the sheer sake of it.
And that’s a shame because Bright Memory’s gameplay is still a lot of fun while not original. If the team had been expanded properly, it would have been possible to implement more levels, a greater variety of enemies, settings and situations; and why not, maybe even introduce some extra power to variegate the gaming experience.
In these two hours, however, Bright Memory fails to tell anything we have not already heard, and it deserves to be remembered more for the story of its development than for its actual merits.
The only luck of the game is the launch at a budget price. This could attract FPS fans looking for a pastime, even if only to enjoy the good technical sector of the title.
Maybe those who only own Nintendo Switch (which you can find on Amazon in the splendid OLED version) could be attracted to the game due to the relative scarcity of exponents of the genre. Even in this case, however, we invite you to keep in mind all the limits we have discussed before proceeding with the purchase so as not to be disappointed by the final experience, which will easily leave you with a bitter taste.