4 Years in the making. If only they'd spent a little longer...

User Rating: 8 | Alone in the Dark X360
First found out about this game about 2 months ago, and I wanted it as soon as I saw it. I closely followed the game, watched all the tech demos, interviews, and trailers. So when my pre-order came the day before release, I was incredibly happy.
The first thing I noticed on the very first part of the very first level, was just how beautiful the graphics really were. The voice acting was also very impressive. Then things started to go a little wrong. The first "episode" of the game, is incredibly tedious, with very little action. As soon as you first go into Third Person View, the controls feel a little clumsy. You start to see a number of Graphical flaws, like hanging cables going straight through your own body, or you find yourself stood in the bonnet of a car.
Then, things start to liven up a bit. You stop noticing all these little graphical flaws when your too busy expecting an attack at any moment. You become like an item-sensor, and find yourself more bothered about finding supplies than continuing with the story.
When you reach the first driving section of the game, the detail that has gone into it is impressive. You can't just steal a car, you have to break into it, and then you cant just drive off, you have to hot-wire it, which can be hard when your worried about the approaching horde of enemies. The actual driving itself is pretty good for a game in which driving is not the main focus for it, but considering the last game from Eden Games was Test Drive Unlimited, I feel they could have done a little better.
The free-roaming part of the game is fun, but at the same time, incredibly annoying. The enemies are numerous, but the items supply isn't very plentiful, considering what you have to do to take out the enemies.
Alone in the Dark does beat all its rivals in one aspect though. The combat system. The combinations of items in your inventory are numerous, and the results are amazing. The use of the analog stick to swing any other items you pick up is equally impressive, and makes a nice change to the "press Y to swing" in other games.
And of course, the fire. I have never seen a game with such beautiful pyrotechnics. Not even Crysis. I could spend ages at a time just watching it burn. It looks realistic, and it burns realistically.
The injury system is also quite innovative, but that said, its also quite annoying, as your main way of healing, can also be your only form of defence/attack.

Anyway, I've rambled on a bit. Alone in the Dark is a brilliant game, and I dare say that it will get alot of gameplay hours out of me, even if just for the free-roaming aspect.
I doubt its anywhere near the standard of Resident Evil 5 when its finally released next year, but until then, it will definitely do nicely. Could have done with a bit more work though, just to smoothen out the rough edges that let it down.