IO Interactive, the developers of Kane and Lynch, has a pretty decent track record behind them. They are, after all, the creators of the Hitman series, titles which have pushed the moral envelope and have been hugely successful in their own right. Now IO Interactive has switched their attention to next-gen formats and to a game that, on paper, is fantastically deep.
Kane and Lynch is not your typical buddy story. A brutal mercenary and the disturbed psychopath assigned to watch over him, Kane and Lynch is anything but traditional. The storyline is so good in fact, that many gamers will be willing to overlook some annoying flaws to keep the narrative flowing.
As you would expect Kane and Lynch is thematically very similar to Hitman with its over-the-top violence and language, reminding one of the assassin classic. But Kane and Lynch adds a squad mechanic to the traditional third-person shooting styles of IO’s previous games. This mechanic works occasionally well but lacks precision when it comes to the more difficult levels.
In fact the whole game seems to lack precision despite the engrossing storyline. Enemy AI is shoddy, weapon targeting is inconsistent and the cover system is sometimes next to useless. And considering that most of the missions throughout the game require you to also guide your squad through crossfire nightmares, all of the little issues add up to some immensely frustrating experiences.
Kane and Lynch is a great experience in patches, with a superb storyline and characters undermined by a general lack of polish overall. But if you can overlook the issues, then the demented, ultra-violent world of Kane and Lynch might just suck you in.