Binary Domain: Bring Your Gamepad For a Great Time

Krakn3Dfx

Platinum Member
Sep 29, 2000
2,969
1
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Binary Domain just came out this past week for the PC. It's a port of the 360/PS3 game that came out a few months ago to almost no fanfare, but people who had the chance to play it had great things to say about it. I had pre-ordered it on GMG about a month ago for $33 and was interested to jump in and see what console gamers were talking about.

Binary Domain is very much a game in the Gears of War vein, there's run and gun, cover, and pressing B on a 360 controller to jump barriers. It has "Credits" that you gain by killing enemies that you can use to upgrade your attributes like accuracy, shooting distance, etc., and stations throughout the game that you log into to perform these upgrades as well as buy ammo, weapons, first aid kits, etc.

The game has some big set piece events where you generally end up fighting giant robots and shooting glowy spots on them, along the lines of Lost Planet or Vanquish. There's nothing super innovative here, although the voice acting is generally a bit above what has some out of Japan.

The story is really where Binary Domain shines though, as good as any big screen sci fi film, with a couple of great twists and some good character development. The game is around 11-13 hours in length, and I came away wanting more.

I've heard mouse and keyboard controls are pretty awful, but if you don't mind hooking up a gamepad, this is definitely one of my favorite experiences in gaming this year. Highly recommended.
 
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obidamnkenobi

Golden Member
Sep 16, 2010
1,407
423
136
Ok, someone please enlighten me. How would it be possible that in any game involving shooting/aiming it would somehow be better to use a gamepad than a mouse? I've played a shooter on a console for maybe 30 min total my whole life, so I'd honestly like to know. But during that time I could barely walk forward without looking into the floor or ceiling all the time, never mind having any hope of actually shooting anything.

Even if M+KB controls are terrible, I think that I would at least be able to hit something using that, unlike my performance using a gamepad. Is the accuracy better (somehow)? Or the movement? I just can't fathom under what configuration a gamepad is an improvement, if you have the option of even shitty mouse controls:confused:
 

ixelion

Senior member
Feb 5, 2005
984
1
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Ok, someone please enlighten me. How would it be possible that in any game involving shooting/aiming it would somehow be better to use a gamepad than a mouse? I've played a shooter on a console for maybe 30 min total my whole life, so I'd honestly like to know. But during that time I could barely walk forward without looking into the floor or ceiling all the time, never mind having any hope of actually shooting anything.

Even if M+KB controls are terrible, I think that I would at least be able to hit something using that, unlike my performance using a gamepad. Is the accuracy better (somehow)? Or the movement? I just can't fathom under what configuration a gamepad is an improvement, if you have the option of even shitty mouse controls:confused:
you haven't played dead space 1 on the PC have you?
 

Krakn3Dfx

Platinum Member
Sep 29, 2000
2,969
1
81
Ok, someone please enlighten me. How would it be possible that in any game involving shooting/aiming it would somehow be better to use a gamepad than a mouse? I've played a shooter on a console for maybe 30 min total my whole life, so I'd honestly like to know. But during that time I could barely walk forward without looking into the floor or ceiling all the time, never mind having any hope of actually shooting anything.

Even if M+KB controls are terrible, I think that I would at least be able to hit something using that, unlike my performance using a gamepad. Is the accuracy better (somehow)? Or the movement? I just can't fathom under what configuration a gamepad is an improvement, if you have the option of even shitty mouse controls:confused:
There's a jetski driving section that people have said is nigh impossible to play with a mouse/kb, I dunno why tho. I've gotten to the point where I realize that probably 80% of the games that are ported from console to PC will just be more enjoyable with a gamepad. I like playing games with a mouse/kb that are designed well for that control scheme, but this one obviously was not.
 

Ganeedi

Senior member
Jul 7, 2008
258
0
0
Thanks for the heads up. I'm sold on the story, sounds like good gaming w/ controller from the couch. Just need to work thru some of my current library.
 

darkewaffle

Diamond Member
Oct 7, 2005
8,152
1
81
Ok, someone please enlighten me. How would it be possible that in any game involving shooting/aiming it would somehow be better to use a gamepad than a mouse? I've played a shooter on a console for maybe 30 min total my whole life, so I'd honestly like to know. But during that time I could barely walk forward without looking into the floor or ceiling all the time, never mind having any hope of actually shooting anything.

Even if M+KB controls are terrible, I think that I would at least be able to hit something using that, unlike my performance using a gamepad. Is the accuracy better (somehow)? Or the movement? I just can't fathom under what configuration a gamepad is an improvement, if you have the option of even shitty mouse controls:confused:
Both have preferential situations. Where a controller shines is when targetting is controlled independent of the camera, most notably in third person titles. Additionally games where a camera is 'fixed' movement tends to be superior with a joystick compared to WASD or most other keyboard schemes where the mouse can't influence rotation.
 

Skunkwourk

Diamond Member
Dec 9, 2004
4,662
1
81
Thanks for the info. I'll check it out when it goes down in price. Still waiting on a sale for Alan Wake too.
 

kamikazekyle

Senior member
Feb 23, 2007
538
0
0
Downloaded the demo, and whew, this thing screams "we're only porting because it's based on the Crytech Engine and two interns can do the job." Textures and sprites are rendered for 720p or less which don't even scale right to 1080p after I adjusted the screen size, rendering stuff a blurry and pixelated mess. Graphics wise, environment textures are a bit low res. Character and weapon textures are pretty solid though no frills. Gunfire and sound effects are pretty weak and dull sounding without much body. Framerate is locked at 60 fps.

All tooltips and stuff are for the Xbox 360 gamepad only, and I had to start pressing every key on my keyboard to figure out how to go back a menu level (Space is "A", F is "B", Q is "Y", Middle Mouse is Left Bumper, Tab is Right Bumper). Autoaim is on by default and can be increased to make things easier on the easiest difficulty, but can be turned off entirely as well. Configuration is done with an external program, though to its credit is is pretty full fledged and even allows for various SSAO and AA options. It doesn't, however, tell you what keyboard key relates to what gamepad key -- simply "Mouse 1 to shoot". It even allows you to not even use a mouse and instead play entirely with the keyboard.

I did manage to fumble my way into the game and it looks like it might have promise, once you memorize what keyboard key relates to what gamepad button (assuming you're not using a gamepad). Though if you are a KB&M player you'll want to crank up the difficulty to compensate for the fact that pretty much all weapons are precision firing with a mouse and aim assist off and turn the game into easy mode. The voice command/recognition bit looks pretty interesting, but I didn't have a mic hooked up to see how well it worked.

I didn't run into any bugs, so props to the port on that. And the sheer fact they even bothered with a demo port is kudos in my book. No XBLive requirements or integration for those that hate Live on the PC (at least in the demo, not sure on the full version).

As it's only the demo I didn't get much of a feel for the overall story, so I wont' comment on that.

All in all, from the demo, seems like a good $9.99 bargain bin game if played on the PC with KB&M. I'd rate it worth more if they simply bothered to put up key bindings as tooltips rather than the default Xbox 360 buttons. Basically it's a Gears of War clone with some light RPG/character interaction elements thrown in. If you're a fan of Gears of War and enjoy third person cover shooters with a gamepad, this is right up your alley and would be worth more.

I will admit I'm a bit biased as I thought Gears of War was pretty boring and TPS "press button to hug cover" shooters too predictable and dull in combat. I also feel gamepad controls in anything but a fighter to be too sluggish and imprecise, even in third person shooters and platformers. Just my personal ability and preference; no qualms at all with those who like controllers. Hence why I said that for those that enjoy TPS cover games and use a gamepad will find a *much* better value out of the game than I did. It's actually cheaper on the PC than the 360.
 

paul878

Senior member
Jul 31, 2010
874
1
0
If you play with Keyboard and Mouse, don't brother with this game!
It is the most awful port ever!
 

Krakn3Dfx

Platinum Member
Sep 29, 2000
2,969
1
81
They actually just released a pretty substantial patch for it a few days ago:

Patch notes:

* FOV options have been added in the Configuration Tool for Aiming and Normal views.
* Fixed Configuration Tool crash when modifying options for DirectInput control pads.
* Restored missing Controller Sensitivity options to Configuration Tool.
* Added basic keyboard and mouse navigation to the menus.
* Updated mouse sensitivity; mouse aiming should generally feel more comfortable now.
* Added Volume option in the Configuration Tool.
* Changed the Screen Size setting to be 100% by default.
* Changed the default button prompts to the keyboard icons.
* Fixed a crash on game exit.

Hardware issues:

* On Intel Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge processors, users may experience a graphical issue during the cutscene in Chapter 1 when you let go of the ship and swim over to the gangway, just before using the grappling hook. Intel is aware of the issue, and the fix will be rolled out in a future driver update. Please continue to keep your graphics drivers up to date, and the issue will soon be fixed.

* Users playing the game on some NVIDIA graphics cards, using more recent driver versions, may experience corruption of the water reflections (appearing as a mosaic-like effect over the water). NVIDIA is aware of the issue and will work on fixing it in a driver update.

* Users on Optimus laptops will likely be unable to select the correct graphics card in the Configuration Tool. NVIDIA is aware of the issue, and will work on fixing this for a future driver update.
 

paul878

Senior member
Jul 31, 2010
874
1
0
That's nice, but the game should not have released on the PC, it only piss people off and give the company a bad rap.
 

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