A new month brings new free games to Xbox Live. This month, I’ve actually played through one of the available games – it was actually one of the first Xbox One games I bought: Thief. I wrote about it way back when it came out, but now that it will be free for a month, I thought it might be nice to revisit my thoughts on it.
Ultimately it’s an alright game – since it’s free, there really isn’t a major reason now to not pick it up. I do think it’s worth playing, if for no reason other than there really is only one other game like it out – Dishonored. Both games are very similar, probably because Dishonored drew pretty heavily on Thief‘s classic games as inspiration. When the series returned, it had to be a no brainer to look at Dishonored and pull from that game’s successes. There’s enough differences between the two where they definitely feel different – Thief takes place in a more open world setting than Dishonored, but there are pretty clear parallels than can be drawn.
Of course, just because it looks and plays similarly to a great game like Dishonored, that doesn’t mean that the return of Garet went flawlessly. Being truthful, Thief has some pretty noticeable shortcomings. The story is pretty flat – I don’t really remember the point looking back at it now. The gameplay itself tries to push you towards the non-violent options, which is good because combat was pretty poor. I remember having some sizable gripes with the controls too – the felt rather clunky. I also think it had a wonky difficulty curve to it – some parts I remember being very challenging, and others were breezes.
At the end of the day what I think Thief is is a good example of where “next-gen” games were back early last year. It was still trying to balance both being on Xbox One and on Xbox 360, and it shows. But it’s free. It’s worth at least running through once, getting some easy gamerscore and then clearing it off your hard drive. If it were merely on sale, I’d say pass, but $0.00 is zero pressure to be good.