In the PlayStation 4 version of Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark - Ultimate Edition, over 100 levels await, designed to punish bad decisions with deadly consequences. Fortunately, you have an infinite number of twins with which to throw at the obstacles ahead of you, allowing you to learn from mistakes in order to conquer the title’s sinister science facility with the sneakiest, most effective mechanical mirror at your disposal. With even more content than its PlayStation 3 and Vita counterparts, this edition of Curve Studios’ sneak-‘em-up provides plenty to keep you busy, but in spite of its enhanced moniker, it’s never really amounts to a package that your next-gen system necessarily needs.
That’s not to say that it doesn’t come recommended, though, as the release boasts a highly enjoyable adventure with some exceptional design. The standard 80 levels are all miniature works of art – assuming that you’re an admirer of devilish traps and fiendish platforming challenges. Built with accessibility in mind, this game is best described as a fusion between Hotline Miami and Metal Gear Solid – it’s espionage without the irritations. Stages grow in complexity as you progress, adding in teleporters, lasers, sentry guns, and more. Figuring out how to get by is great fun – and yet it’s still more fun elsewhere.
The pick-up-and-play nature of the title makes it a perfect fit for portable platforms, and as we evidenced in our previous review, this release really shines on the Vita. As such, stumping up $14.99/£10.99 for this PS4 version – which does come complete with the Lost Clones and Teleporter Chambers expansions – doesn’t quite feel like the best decision. It’s cost effective, there’s no doubt about that – but without cross-buy support, you’re better off picking up the superior PS3 and Vita package. It’s through headphones, on the handheld’s uber sharp screen, that the sleuthing simulation really shines, and there are not enough advantages to this next-gen version to recommend on Sony’s last system instead.
Of course, if the PS4 is the only console that you own, then this is still a ton of fun. You’ll slip by robotic menaces, flipping switches to change the environments and solve conundrums as you slope about in the shadows. All of the included 120 levels are designed around replayability, with your increasing skills – and multiple spy suits – allowing you to shave precious seconds of your time. Bosses at the end of each tenth arena will challenge your abilities to the absolute maximum, making escaping with your green goggles intact a satisfying accomplishment. There are even leaderboards to keep you coming back, as well as a level editor with which you can use to construct your own dastardly death chambers.
Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark - Ultimate Edition is definitely the most content complete version of Curve Studios’ espionage escapade, but that doesn’t prevent it from being best suited to portable play. Alas, if you’ve always enjoyed the concept of stealth games but wished that they operated at a much faster pace, then this is an undeniably entertaining foray – just keep in mind that if you’ve got a Vita kicking around, the last-gen version may still be your best bet.