Upgrades to weapons and powers can be made at special stations, using weapon upgrade tokens and E-99, which serves as a kind of in-game currency. These stations are very BioShock, granting you such upgrades as decreased reload times and greater stamina to allow for longer periods of running. It's not really as exciting as the Plasmid upgrades in 2K's classic, but allows for some degree of customisation.
Scattered throughout the levels are audio recordings (hello BioShock, System Shock and the rest), telling some of the backstory of the previous inhabitants of Katorga-12. You also get moments where previous events in time can be seen taking place in front of your eyes, giving locations a solid sense of history and making the curled up dead bodies more than just scenery dressing. There are loads of notes to read, too, each providing a little more background to events that took place on the island.
Raven's game doesn't feature the longest single-player campaign, but it's enjoyable while it lasts despite not really capitalising on the potential offered by the TMD. There's a 12-player humans vs monsters multiplayer mode included too, but it's just not interesting enough to tear anyone away from the many superior competitive shooters already on the market.
Singularity has been made using Unreal Engine 3, but for a lot of the time you wouldn't know it. At points, when the moody lighting is in full swing and the time effects are filling the screen, the game can look great, but at others it appears rather bland and lacking in the kind of sheen we've seen in action games over the last couple of years. The enemy designs are also rather generic, although are still effectively creepy in appearance.
Surprises don't come along too often in the video game industry, but Singularity definitely isn't the flop everyone expected it to be. With a bit more ingenuity in the puzzles, more made of the time travel and a little more graphical "oomph", Raven and Activision could have had a real gem on their hands. It's still well worth a look though, especially when it inevitably gets cut in price a few weeks down the line.
VideoGamer.com Score7 Score out of 10
- Some smart time puzzles
- Good background story
- Multiplayer is forgettable
- Visuals are mixed