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Mirror’s Edge Catalyst Features An Upgrade Tree, Not All Fans Like It


The upcoming reboot to DICE’s fantastic Mirror’s Edge is coming together nicely, as new preview footage has been released and a scheduled closed beta will start soon. The original Mirror’s Edge may not have sold in huge numbers, but it has since been gaining fans who loved the freeform parkour and all the many moves available from the start that can be used to move around the levels more elegantly, and more importantly, faster. It’s popular among the speedrun community.

With the upcoming reboot, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst aims to make the game much more accessible and appealing to the mainstream audience, adding features like an open world and an upgrade tree. But here’s the problem: While the first game allows the players access to all the moves protagonist Faith have at her disposal, in Catalyst most of those moves are locked behind an upgrade tree. Even skills like tucking the feet while in the air and rolling after a jump.

Some fans are furious of the change, as noted in Eurogamer’s report. To them, Mirror’s Edge is all about getting from point A to point B in record time using all the moves at hand. But of course, DICE has a bigger picture in mind when they implemented this feature: the progression system works.

Speaking to Gamespot, DICE’s senior producer Jeremy Miller has said that with the upgrade tree, players started to figure out how to use each of the moves better than having them all unlocked from the get-go. One example was the ability to quickturn:

“The quick-turn is a slightly more abstract tool and people didn’t use it as much [in Mirror’s Edge],”

“We’ve seen a distinct increase in people going, ‘Oh, I’ve got this, how do I use it?’ It’s worked into people’s movement language much more successfully as a result of doing that.”

Considering publisher EA is willing to give a unique IP that didn’t do well financially another shot, it’s apparent that DICE is going to consider making Mirror’s Edge a much easier sell for a broader audience rather than sticking to please the relatively small hardcore community.

This can be a knee-jerk reaction and hopefully, the hate will dwindle down over time. Maybe there’s a New Game+ feature that carries over all unlocked skills for a second playthrough? That should at least please the speedrunning crowd and the hardcore fans a bit.

Mirror’s Edge Catalyst is slated for release on May 24, 2016 for PC, PS4 and Xbox One.

UPDATE 22/4/2016: Apparently, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst just got delayed for two weeks, now slated for release on June 7 in the US and June 9 in Europe. Presumably the release date for Asia should not be far off from the two date mentioned.