Damn Fine: Deadly Premonition Coming To PC

By Adam Smith on July 18th, 2013 at 11:00 am.

I don’t play many console games at the moment. My 360 has curled up in a corner, snoring like a pig in a hurricane, and the PS3 hobbled back from the retirement home to entertain me The Last of Us and its brilliant reinterpretation of the great Westward journey. State of Decay has a certain allure but I’ll wait for the PC version. Over drinks at Rezzed though, I told almost anyone who would listen (and some who were trying not to) that there was one game above all others from the last generation that I’d like to see on PC. That game was Deadly Premonition and I continued to drown my sorrows as I stated, wisely, that it would never come to pass. A Director’s Cut edition is now on Steam Greenlight.

Strange, stodgy, clever, meta, funny, frightening and as divisive as the Berlin Wall, it’s a game that I was told fell into the ‘so bad it’s good’ pile, which is mostly full of actual rubbish that people have formed an inexplicable affection for. It doesn’t belong there though. It belongs on a tiny pedestal.

Despite the Twin Peaks references, this isn’t a Lynchian game. It combines traditional gaming character types and activities with a sense of surreality and unease. Indeed, many of the game’s distinct qualities derive from its use of the medium rather than its allusions to film and television.

Just as Twin Peaks embraced and occasionally throttled the conventions of daytime television, Deadly Premonition has a similar relationship with aspects of game design, presenting the expected and gradually making it less so. Here is a list of new things for the director’s cut, including some PC exclusive bonuses:

A surprising new scenario from the game’s director, Hidetaka ‘Swery’ Suehiro
Enhanced HD graphics with new textures
Reworked control system allowing for an even better combat experience
Downloadable content to expand the mystery beyond the original game
New bonus DLC exclusive to the PC version!
Achievements and Steam Trading Cards (exclusive to the Steam version)

I think the exclusive PC DLC is going to be some stupid costumes. Oh well.

As excited as I am for the release, mainly because I get to play through the game again and write about it, I refuse to forgive the controls, which are about as comfortable as a slipper full of razorblades. This ‘reworked control system’ would probably have to involve the creation of an entirely new engine, input device and critical faculty for me to say anything particularly kind about it.

Anyway, go vote. Or don’t. See if I care.

I care so very much.

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61 Comments »

  1. Premium User Badge RedViv says:

    Yes please all of my yes.

  2. Premium User Badge Tom De Roeck says:

    damnit, you didnt tell me, not even over a cigarette!

  3. Lewis Denby says:

    “snoring like a pig in a hurricane”

    Adam, that is beautiful.

  4. Echo Black says:

    One of the few console games I actually miss on PC, along perhaps RDR.

  5. Premium User Badge DrScuttles says:

    Perhaps it’s because I’m a sucker for damn fine coffee in my games, but I’m very curious about Deadly Premonition. The opinions I’ve read range all across the Opinion-o-Spectrum but caught my attention enough to want to pick up the game cheap somewhere and investigate. Only with no Xbox, that has proven somewhat difficult.
    Hell, I managed to finish Pathologic so I’m sure I can handle how ‘bad’ Deadly Premonition is supposed to be.

    • MykulJaxin says:

      If you take your coffee black as midnight on a moonless night you’ll find a lot to like here. Sort of. My buddies and I played this last year as part of the annual Horrorfest (which is a made up event lasting an entire year where we just play horror games when we feel like it) and it was really hard to get through. The map is bollocks, at least on xbox. It constantly rotates and reorients itself and at the max zoomed out distance it looks like it’s still 3000% zoomed in. So picking somewhere to go and using the map to traverse the stupidly massive and boring map is a huge chore. But the dialog/story/everything is insane and hilarious and might be worthwhile. But this is also one of the few videogames I’ve fallen asleep playing. Also worthy of note is the horrendous “Tail this person while you’re driving” mission that feels like it lasts like 15 minutes.

      • Low Life says:

        *SPOILER/HINT*
        To make the driving around part slightly less awful, complete George’s flower picking mission. You won’t regret it.

      • Premium User Badge DrScuttles says:

        Pretty black! Well, I can live with some obtuse systems and general clunkiness. Hopefully it’ll be a decent port. Just a shame it has to go through Greenlight to get on Steam, bloody Valve.

  6. DiamondDog says:

    “Enhanced Graphics and Controls.”

    Ruined.

    • Henke says:

      I hope the driving controls have been improved too. Replayed it recently and was appaled by how awful they are. Basically the input is digital, despite it using the analogue thumbsticks for steering. So it’s hard to turn in less than 5 degree increments, causing you to have to zig-zag down the road for most of the time. :P

      • Premium User Badge VelvetFistIronGlove says:

        The main changes to controls in the PS3 DC version were:

        Cars are now a little easier to drive without running off the road when all you wanted to do was straighten up. They’re still not good, just not horrendous.

        Stairs no longer have a fixed camera, you just stay with the behind-the-shoulder camera. No more Francis Tank Morgan.

        Walking is still done with the left stick, but aiming is now on the right stick. So you no longer see an enemy while running forward, quickly take aim and find yourself aiming at the ceiling.

        Personally I regret the changes, because the hilarious awfulness of them is gone—but it’ll definitely benefit anyone playing the game for the first time. And there’s still plenty of weirdness and awkwardness to go around.

  7. I_have_no_nose_but_I_must_sneeze says:

    Now if only they could do something similar with the first three Silent Hill games so I can finally play them.

    • Kaira- says:

      The first three already have PC ports, though out of print, not sold really anywhere and to say the least, a bit dodgy. And well, looking at the HD collection, it might be better if Konami didn’t do it again.

      [E] Actually, first didn’t have a PC port. Whoops.

      • Kodaemon says:

        The ones that have PC versions are 2, 3, 4 and Homecoming. Homecoming’s still available, also on Steam.

        • DaftPunk says:

          First one can be emulated with psx,you can also turn on various filters and AA so game looks quite decent.

  8. Low Life says:

    Oh wow. I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but for some reason even after watching two entire playthroughs of the game (Giant Bomb’s two endurance runs) during the last month or so I still want to play the game.

    This is amazing. Great. Bullseye.

    • thebigJ_A says:

      I loved those Endurance runs. I’d watch them again right now except, well, Ryan’s gone and passed away just recently and it’d make me sad.
      RIP Ryan Davis
      :’(

  9. Pich says:

    Finally we can mod out the combat!

    • Gargenville says:

      Finally we can brute force it into staying above 15FPS.

      (the item pickup models it shows you in the PS3 version are completely unoptimized, like, here’s the same hardware that runs the Last of Us choking on a can of pickles on a solid black background because it contains ALL THE POLYGONS IN THE WORLD)

      • Premium User Badge VelvetFistIronGlove says:

        Not to mention the stuttering every single time the game loads a new sound. DP DC is probably the worst PS3 port ever.

    • Premium User Badge Oozo says:

      Adam: As far as I know, “Lynchian” does not actually refer to something being bound to cinema or TV. In fact, the general notion of it lines up well with your characterization of Deadly Premonition. David Foster Wallace definied it beautifully: “A particular kind of irony where the very macabre and the very mundane combine in such a way as to reveal the former’s perpetual containment within the latter.” (Cf. http://www.lynchnet.com/lh/lhpremiere.html)

      Even though “Deadly Premonition” may be a bit more on the unintentionally camp side of things than Lynch’s movies, I think it nails that particular tone often enough — it’s a central part of what makes the game so fascinating.

      Anyway, the hope for moddability might tempt me to buy it a third time.

      (Played the Japanese import-version for the PS3, without knowing a word of Japanese. It was worth struggling through the menus. Bought the director’s cut on release day as well.)

      But Greenvale really is, in a very twisted way, one of the most accurate renderings of small town-life in a game. (That’s where it succeeds in being “mundane”.) There are really interesting systems running below the shoddy surface. And even though one should be careful not to “over-correct” the game, you certainly could enhance and expand it by modding. Interesting.

  10. Totally heterosexual says:

    Why yes, I did want Emily running around in a catgirl outfit the whole game.

    It’s a pretty bad game, but it’s a great “thing” to experience. Don’t you think so Zach?

    • Adam Smith says:

      Yeah, that irked me.

      I agree that it has serious design faults but so much of its playfulness is directly tied to assumptions and expectations about game mechanics that I can’t see it working as any other type of ‘thing’.

      • Totally heterosexual says:

        Hm. I guess so (Gee thanks Zach. You are supposed to have my back man).

        Well whatever it may be, everyone should play it at least once.

  11. LennyLeonardo says:

    Diane, remind me to buy this game.

    • The Random One says:

      A sinner’s game… a game one plays to atone for past sins.

  12. tehsorrow says:

    I only played about an hour of this game when I borrowed it off a friend and I found it to be utterly terrible. However, since then I’ve been told it’s terrible on purpose. I’m not sure if that makes me anymore keen to play the game but sure makes it an interesting game on paper.

    • Kaira- says:

      Well, it’s not terrible in itself outside of combat. It’s just out of its mind, with strange people of the city, off the wall dialogues and so. And I may or may not have shed a tear in the end for some reason. Anyhow, it’s a very auteur-game, like Kojima’s games.

    • Lewis Denby says:

      I don’t think it’s terrible on purpose. I also disagree wholeheartedly with the “so bad it’s good” talk. It’s a phenomenal, creative game, hidden beneath a very clunky exterior.

      The first hour is also pretty much the worst bit of the game to get a feel for things. After those early stages, it turns into an open-world mystery story (albeit one that occasionally drifts back into shoddy survival horror).

      Honestly, it’s fantastic. The way the game’s systems interact with one another is really brilliant. Try it.

    • Premium User Badge VelvetFistIronGlove says:

      No, it’s not “terrible on purpose”. At least, I can’t see a reasonable argument for that. Low budget, certainly. Unpolished, without a doubt. And while that adds to the charm for those who have played it already, it’s not actually better because of the ugly graphics and shoddy controls.

      It’s not “so bad it’s good”—it’s good despite all these flaws.

  13. rei says:

    This is such wonderful news. One of the few games I’ve almost wanted to own a console over (almost).

    I recommend the Deadly Premonition endurance run (let’s play) over at Giant Bomb. You even get to pick between two different crews!

    http://www.giantbomb.com/deadly-premonition/3030-29212/videos/

    • Low Life says:

      And of those two I very much recommend the VJ-series, they’re an aweome duo. Brad’s cool, but his gaming quirks started irritating me a bit during such a long series.

      Though if you’re going to play this, I’d recommend not watching any of it as the game’s full of great surprising moments.

  14. fuggles says:

    This and not Scott Pilgrim? Saints alive there is no justice. On a similar note, the giant bomb endurance run is fantastic and I only just learned about the untimely death of Ryan – so sad.

    • rei says:

      It is very sad. Right after his wedding too. He almost felt like a friend after having listened to his podcasts for what has to be almost a decade.

  15. Conor says:

    Yes yes yes yes yes

  16. KDR_11k says:

    P-C in the coffee!

  17. Eight Rooks says:

    Not completely a surprise given Swery has openly stated he’d like to see it happen. Still, I will happily double-dip for this since I got rid of my PS3 copy (though that was the original, I’ve not seen the director’s cut). Terrible visuals, laboured, stilted gameplay, dodgy controls (though I actually… kind of liked the combat?) and yet an utterly, utterly riveting experience, with some of the finest storytelling and one of the all-time greatest endings a videogame has ever had. Adam is correct, it wouldn’t have the same impact in any other medium.

    The costumes are the usual groaningly predictable cheese – though I don’t know what’s exclusive about them, they’re already on PS3. Still, no-one’s forcing you to use them. Suffice it to say if Greenlight doesn’t get this through it has failed to accomplish anything of worth, now and forever, and Gaben can hang his head in shame. (And that’s only slightly hyperbole. God, how I love this game.)

  18. Metalhead9806 says:

    This is one of those games i wished were on PC… Along with other titles like Enslaved, RDR and Shadows of the Damned.

    I could live without the Halo and uncharted #12019201 that are on consoles but the unique third party games hurt when they dont find a way to PC.

  19. Drake Sigar says:

    Yes please. It’s cool for games to act insane, but Deadly Premonition IS insane.

  20. Premium User Badge golem09 says:

    How does this have to be approved on greenlight? It’s the biggest cult hit of the generation.

  21. vatara says:

    The Let’s Play by Supergreatfriend is a damn fine watch: http://supergreatfriend.com/deadlypremonition.html

  22. NicholasTimothyJones says:

    Them graphics and that font for the subtitles…I have seen these somewhere before…

    Shenmue 2!

  23. Sparkasaurusmex says:

    I wish they’d make PC trailers like this without the assumption that I know anything about their game. Improved graphics and controls? I have no reference point. I guess I can assume the graphics and controls sucked and now they’ll suck less? That’s what I get from the video.

    • MykulJaxin says:

      Oh yeah. They were bad. So, so bad. I had this video I took on my phone right when we started playing the game and the main character is moonwalking backward in a wide, leisurely circle. I need to see if I can find that

  24. Orazio Zorzotto says:

    Anybody who’s on the fence about this game should look up the “sinner’s sandwich” scene on YouTube.
    The hilarity. The amazing hilarity.

  25. vonRout says:

    Deadly Premonition may be the worst game I have ever completed, and yet I am oddly happy about this news. I found its hamminess endearing to the point where I no longer cared how terrible the actual game was.

    Gaming masochism set to 11.

  26. Arach says:

    Well this came out of nowhere,can´t wait for this Zack.

  27. BTA says:

    It’s unfortunate that I, uh, just beat this game and every side quest after like 55 hours of play. Two days ago.

    But they’ll draw me back in for that new story content, won’t they, Zach? What a game…

  28. Strangerator says:

    They just need to fix the map, you can’t zoom out far enough and the damn thing rotates based on which way you are facing. Or maybe this was the designers’ way of telling us we need to memorize our way around Greenvale, Zach?

  29. excel_excel says:

    An absolutely unforgettable experience. I may just have to buy this version, despite owning the 360 release, isn’t that right Zack? Why it has to go through Greenlight is beyond me though.

  30. Shazbut says:

    From the comments, I can’t figure out whether this game is great or awful. I’m expecting an experience similar to Pathologic.

    Edit: – Is this the “The Room” of gaming?

    • Dominic White says:

      It’s a great (if low-budget) and quirky open-world adventure game with some seriously wretched shooting segments. Play on Easy mode and you have almost no chance of dying and can just focus on the game itself.

  31. eclipse mattaru says:

    “Damn Fine: Deadly Premonition Coming To PC” Post-Mortem.

    • What Went Wrong:

    That last line should’ve been IN ALL CAPS.