It's seemed to a lot of us that this long-awaited game project was stuck forever in 'development hell'. That it's made a release at all is remarkable. It bears all the hallmarks of a project that has been jerked around all over the place. Perhaps the stunning success of 'Dishonored' provided the electric shock necessary to bring this corpse of a game back to life.
Like a lot of big name games that have suffered in this way it's not totally awful. Just very, very disappointing. The initial feel of this offering seems encouraging. Some really nice visuals along with a bucket full of high hopes raise expectations which are quickly dashed by the rather crappy execution. There are bad decisions everywhere. The developers have upped the specs of this game almost unrealistically whilst still delivering a game that looks like it should really be on Playstation 2. It actually feels a bit insulting. Ever get the feeling you've been ripped off?
There's clearly some considerable talent on show here but what good is it when so many other parts of the game are so shoddy? I'm sure there are a few very frustrated people at Eidos Montreal right now. Imagine working your heart out on this thing and finding that on completion the game should be let down by such bad audio, bad mechanics and a limp dead dog clunker of a story.
It looks like a project that was mothballed and then given a vigorous pimping in order to get it out there.
Thief represents a massive missed opportunity. A loyal and faithful fan base (including myself) for a terrific franchise with some excellent previous titles would have ensured a respectable longevity for this title.
But the worst thing of all is that this game will bury Thief once and for all. That's it. Dead and gone.
And that really is tragic. Since the old games are not playable on modern systems the Thief franchise is destined to be just a fond memory. No matter how much Garrett has stolen in his previous incarnations, his crimes are nothing to this.