Game Info: (Box Display)
- System: PS4, PC, Xbox One
- Publisher: Phantom 8 Studios, Gadgy Games
- Developer: Phantom 8 Studios
- Release Date: Feb 23, 2018
- Rating: M for Mature
- Genre: Action
- Players: 1
- Official Website: https://phantom8.studio/
Who it Caters to
What to Expect
Past Cure has players controlling Ian who is beginning to have side effects after gaining psychic powers from an unknown source. Allying himself with his brother Marcus, Ian begins to look for clues to see if there is a way to regain his mind and remove these strange abilities. This in turn begins the main story of Past Cure by giving it a thriller narrative with moments of drama and psychological themes. Unfortunately, Past Cure has a swarm of problems and they begin with the gameplay.
The main thing players do in Past Cure is sneak around various environments or shoot baddies all while occasionally solving simple puzzles with your psychic abilities. Ian has two main powers: the ability to project his spirit which can possess enemies—specific ones only—to solve clues or to hit switches inaccessible by foot. Ian’s other ability is time manipulation which allows Ian to slow down time—similar to Max Payne—to use in both combat and stealth sequences. Both of these powers are needed for progression in Past Cure but neither of them get enough limelight. Often you’ll find time manipulation to be the go to power and will only ever use projection to bust cameras down—which in turn shocks or stuns guards—or to press buttons. Past Cure could have given players tons of other puzzles to solve with their abilities but in the end these powers feel gimmicky and underutilized.
Another poor element to Past Cure is the actual combat. Players will get a hold of several weapons—machine guns, pistols, desert eagles with sights and a shogun—but all of them handle poorly and usually pistols are the best options thanks to their accuracy. Combat in Past Cure feels terrible with melee being clunky and not smooth—even countering attacks plays this way—making for an overall weak experience. Stealth sections of Past Cure don’t fare much better as often they are repetitive and just annoying with AI being sometimes overly aggressive—they once found us while we were in cover—or so dumb they will see you and then look away.
However, Past Cure’s flaws don’t end with the gameplay itself but also are seen in the level design and graphics. At times Past Cure feels like a horror game and not because of the story but because, of the repetition of environments. The first major mission has players running around in a parking garage for at least 20-30 minutes as it loops with only slight changes in car location and room designs. This applies to all of the several chapters of Past Cure—it’s a short game—as they suffer from bland designs and ho hum graphics. The dream sequences are solid enough with a nice emphasis on being creepy sometimes or just bizarre but in a good way. As we mentioned, graphically Past Cure looks terrible at times and okay at others. Character models can be sometimes okay but often—namely with enemies—lackluster and very weak.
Finally, we wish to talk about Past Cure’s biggest issue and that is the story itself. The writing in Past Cure is pretty lackluster as dialogue feels cheesy at times and underplayed in other moments. The voice acting doesn’t help as it’s usually pretty weak, but we’re not sure if that’s the written dialogue’s issue or if it’s the voice actors. Regardless though, the story isn’t helped with technical issues where subtitles don’t appear but equally things skip around. There were times where a cutscene would end abruptly and the voices would still be talking. Some cutscenes even had odd technical glitches or motions that ruined a moment. Past Cure has an interesting premise but it just doesn’t deliver.
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
- Interesting gameplay mechanics
- Psychological dream moments are very stylish at times
- Interesting story ideals
- Weak 3rd person shooting
- Enemies are repetitive and as smart as bricks
- Graphics tend to be very weak
- Voice acting is quite poor
- A lot of frame rate issues and in-game technical follies such as subtitles not appearing or appearing too fast
- Very short