Indiana Daily Student

The Darkness: B+

There's a new king of first-person shooters on Xbox 360 and it's called "The Darkness."\nBased on the comic book of the same name, "The Darkness" is the story of mob hit man Jackie Estacado, who on his 21st birthday discovers he is heir to an ancient power that can crush his enemies and summon demon-like entities, among other abilities.\nThe basic shooting mechanics are a little bland, but what really makes the game shine are the Darkness powers.\nKnocking out a few lights, summoning a kamikaze darkling to open up a new path and then sending a tentacle into the next room to rip out a mobster's heart is unlike anything you've done in a game before.\nThe Darkness creature pulsates around Jackie like some kind of ethereal black snake, and the whole thing takes place in one of the most beautifully gritty cities this side of "Grand Theft Auto."\nOn the downside, however, it's a little too easy to get lost and not know what you're supposed to do next.\nFor the completionist, there are 100 collectables to find, a ton of pop culture references (one near the beginning of the game to the Tool song "Rosetta Stoned" especially brought a smile to my face).\nAnd if searching for all the game's secrets ever gets boring, in a technical marvel, TVs throughout the game world play a handful of classic movies in their entirety, such as "To Kill a Mockingbird."\nTop that off with an atmospheric soundtrack that knows exactly when to sound like a horror film and when to sound like a mob epic, and you've got the total package.\n"The Darkness" is a ray of hope during the summer months when quality game releases tend to drop off. Definitely check it out.

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