Quick Time Reviews: We Happy Few

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Posted August 20, 2018 by Sean Capri in Video Games

Welcome to Quick Time Reviews (or QTR for short!). On these posts a We The Nerdy member reviews the first few hours of a game to determine if it’s worth your time. Games will be graded with a Yay (worth it) Meh (worth looking at via a rental or discounted price) or Nay (don’t even bother).

What’s it about:


We Happy Few is a first person, narrative-driven game with a blend of stealth, survival, and adventure game mechanics. You play Arthur, a professional censor – filtering news articles to keep the public controllable. That is, until Arthur must decide what to do about an article about his recently deceased brother.

Liked:

  • The setting and atmosphere demand attention: a dystonian community  drugged into complacency through oppressive governments and social pressures. Absolutely stellar.
  • Everyone is loaded on Joy which keeps them complacent to the harsh reality around them. They are being controlled. Those going off their Joy are easily spotted as Downers, socially condemned. Violently.
  • You can finish the game in 30 seconds by taking your Joy and forgetting what happened to Percy, Arthur’s brother. A cheeky take on what would actually happen in this insane reality.
  • Great premises for side quests like helping a character post propaganda posters up, to enlighten drugged up population of the truth they can’t see.

Disliked:

  • The first thing you do in the game is flip through news articles. Reading. Not the most explosive opening.
  • Load times long on PS4
  • Seemingly unbalanced mechanics. Take too little Joy results in being ostracized or attacked. Take some to fit in and progress through the game. Take too much and you overdose – causing memory loss, inability to interact with the environment, and generally being treated as if you’re a Downer. Joy high doesn’t last long so the player must know exactly where to go, hindering exploration and causing frustration.
  • Choppy framerate on PS4
  • Too many debuffs to deal with to be fun. Get rest, drink, eat, do drugs – the timers on these truly impairs the enjoyment of the world that was crafted. These persistently side-track the player – but not in an emergent gameplay sort of way.
  • Health items all work differently too but all are slotted to the same quick-access menu on the d-pad. In frantic situations, it is frustrating to hit up, expecting to heal, but discovering that dirty bandages can’t do anything for you.
  • Repeating character models.
  • Clunky movement and melee combat.

Is it worth your time?

Meh: Worth looking at via a rental or discounted price

  • Great ideas. Great setting. 
  • Needs polish and balancing.

About the Author

Sean Capri

I am a beady-eyed Canadian. I play video games and feed/walk my three dogs.