Zombie Studios/Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc./360, PS3, PC

FUN FACT: Based on a treatment by creators of the SAW movie franchise, Leigh Whannell and James Wan, and voiced by the man who made Jigsaw a horror icon, Tobin Bell.

WHY COMPLEX IS CO-SIGNING IT: Games based on movie franchises are almost always instant fails. SAW manages to bring you through a story that's compelling and relevant in an environment that never lacks for tension—and amazingly enough does it more successfully than the past four big-screen sequels combined.

STORY: You have the misfortune of playing the detective who spent his career obsessing on hunting and taking down Jigsaw. The consummation of your mission is also your imminent downfall with your friends and family broken, hurt, or killed in the process...and now Jigsaw is here to punish you for it. Locked in an asylum, you are not only forced to outwit Jigsaw at every turn but he has also implanted something in your stomach (ayo!): the key that will free the other unfortunate souls locked in here with you...

GAMEPLAY: In a matter of minutes, we had the controls locked down and were well on our way maneuvering through Jigsaw's most extensive traps yet, using a welcome combination of wits, fast reaction, exploration, puzzle-solving and holy-fuck-what-is-that escape tactics. All of this came easy with an intuitive third-person control layout with only minimal hiccups in the combat...or maybe that's because we were nervously tapping buttons trying to smack a bitch up quick before we became just another stain on the floor.

GRAPHICS: Steeped heavy in the grime and blood-saturated visuals that made the films a hit, no detail is left untouched, as you sneak down halls with your Zippo flickering, creeping through nightmarish environments that excel beyond our expectations of depravity. Thankfully there's enough down time to really soak in the bloody brilliant set designs.

DOWNSIDE: Unfortunately we didn't get to play all the way through to the end, so the only downfall to this game we can predict is a short game length—which could easily be solved with downloadable content. So, in other words, this is a game that defied all our negative expectations and delivered a great gaming experience that moved beyond the trappings of survival horror clichés.


VIDEO: SAW Video Game Trailer

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