EntertainmentGamesFinal Exam, the cursed chapter of Obscure

Final Exam, the cursed chapter of Obscure

I do not remember when I bought Final Exam , but I do remember that it was on sale and for the mere fact of belonging to the Obscure horror saga. What I don’t know is why it took me so long to test this downloadable spin-off , if only to dispel my curiosity about its more than questionable quality.

Regardless of the name change, despite the fact that at the beginning it repeatedly used the word Obscure (Obscure Dark Aura, years later Obscure D and finally Obscure, simply), what was most surprising in its day was how drastic the modification of its mechanics, going from a survival horror arranged with aesthetic reminiscences of the teenage horror films of the time and with light as the main weapon, to a 2.5D beat ’em up full of monsters with a soulless story and the incentive of a cooperative mode.

A difficult exam to highlight

Final Exam was not a bad game , but it really failed to stand out in any section by not providing anything truly original with respect to other representatives of the genre. And also because of the tough competition that existed in the huge catalog of PlayStation Store, Steam and Xbox Live Arcade at the time.

Beyond the anecdotal of its universe, where it only timidly took advantage of certain scenarios and a couple of special guests from Obscure , it is a game that has poor decisions in its approach, such as having to manually validate the combos for the best ones. scores.

Combos can also be automatically validated so we don’t have to worry about that, but the score will drop drastically. The grace, of course, is to rush to the maximum with the manual method to lengthen the combos in a very beastly way, with the risk of losing a very large one if we get hit.

Each of the four protagonists have slight differences in their abilities and parameters, which can be unlocked and improved, respectively, by completing various challenges in each phase, such as collecting all the objects in the place. In any case, it does not provide much variety of techniques, despite the fact that we can embody the spirit of Dante in Devil May Cry to make juggles with a pistol so that the enemy’s body does not fall.

Final Exam, a game that did not go down in history

And how exactly is it played? Under a fixed plane in 2D, but with certain parts with two larger planes (like Guardian Heroes, but without going so fine and being more limited), we are facing the typical “me against the neighborhood” of the 90s, although structured by phases with objectives that must be met.

At the level of movements it had the typical ones of the genre, being the most essential that of dodging, because it got us out of any trouble without fearing for our lives. And each type of enemy had a different attack pattern that had to be known to anticipate. That, together with the arsenal that we could unlock (from bats to shotguns and much more, where the grandas were not lacking either) and the active skills, made it possible to face any combat with guarantees as soon as we were agile and precise.

It was quite wrong, in any case, of lengthening each phase too much and putting several kinematics (with the game engine) in between, to the point of exhausting the player because of having to do almost always the same thing, going around a lot (in messenger plan) carrying objects.

It was, in short, a game that did not bother us to follow because it lacked charisma and there were other clearly better proposals. And it annoys more, seeing in perspective now, that it was the last installment of Obscure , leaving behind that hopeful message in 2014 about the future of the saga …

At least in Final Exam up to four people could play online , or two locally, as in its origins. And its price was 9.99 euros .

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