The original Bright Memory 1.0 arrived alongside the Xbox Series X|S launch. It was an enjoyable, but short taste of what was to come. At least, that’s what we believed at the time. The follow-up is undeniably better, but isn’t exactly much bigger. This Bright Memory Infinite review will dive into both points. Examining why you should definitely play it, but be in control of your expectations as you do.
Before diving in it would be best to talk about the elephant in the room. Bright Memory Infinite is quite different to Bright Memory 1.0. That’s not to say that if you liked the original release you won’t like this full edition, but there have been some changes. Primarily concerning the level structure. Bright Memory 1.0 offered a variety of environments across small levels, and the occasional distraction or puzzle to solve. Bright Memory Infinite doubles down on the action however. There are no puzzles.
In Bright Memory Infinite, the levels are entirely linear. The exploration boils down to finding collectables for purchasing upgrades, and even these simply ask you to check corners opposed to straying from the beaten path. Furthermore, the level variety has been hemmed in considerably; the sci-fi intro of Bright Memory 1.0 is nowhere to be seen, as in Bright Memory Infinite you’ll be pushing forward through wilderness and small villages, but little else. It is, however, still a wonderfully enjoyable experience.
You play as Shelia (no misspelling), a member of the Supernatural Science Research Organisation, or SRO (again, no misspelling). It feels at times as if the development team’s handle on localisation was put on the b-list of ‘to do’ activities, but for the most part it works. Shelia’s goal is to pursue a general who’s up to nastiness. He’s created a black hole, for some reason, and the entire campaign is centered around you moving ever-closer to this ominous sphere in the sky. It’s a very interesting design, even if the story supporting it is paper-thin.
The combat is obviously Bright Memory Infinite‘s raison d’etre. It’s not hugely different to other FPS titles, but is very much enjoyable. Shelia is armed with both a firearm and a sword at all times. Both can and should be used in tandem to take on the various enemies you’ll face. There’s plenty of enemy variety, and each have a weakness to one of the four firearms or abilities that you have at your disposal. For basic enemies this isn’t much of a worry, but for the bigger guys you may want to learn this quickly.
Every enemy has two bars above their head. The first, red, denotes health. The second, white, details a rechargeable shield. On basic enemies this means very little, but on mid-tier enemies it calls for some tactical play. On bosses, it’s a whole other story. It demands the player be tactical as they dance between their rapidly depleting ammo resources and the need to recharge their sword. It makes for some tense confrontations, even on lower difficulty settings.
As good as this Bright Memory Infinite review is sounding, the game is not without flaw, of course. The intro sequence shows the poorest visual quality of the entire game, for some reason. Breakable boxes will simply disappear without even so much of a fade, and the framerate can dip annoyingly low for a few seconds at a time. And yet despite these issues, Bright Memory Infinite remains one of the most impressive titles yet made available on current-generation hardware. The biggest issue is in fact, that there’s simply not enough of it.
Developed by a team of one, Bright Memory Infinite promised to offer a full campaign compared to Bright Memory 1.0. In reality however, the first playthrough is only slightly longer. It’s in the full completion that you’ll find additional playtime – and Bright Memory Infinite is certainly enjoyable on second and third runs – but that’s not going to be enough for the detractors. There’s no getting past Bright Memory Infinite‘s remarkably short runtime.
As you may have now realised from this Bright Memory Infinite review, what is here is fantastic. And yet, it’s obviously too short. Developer FYQD Studio has promised to continue to support the game and in fact has already offered DLC for the PC version. However, whether or not we’re going to get new levels, weapons, bosses or other game extending content is anyone’s guess. If the studio were to make such additions, you couldn’t stop us from snapping them up.