When I first heard that there would be a strategy guide for The Order: 1886, I was rather stoked. The game appeared to have so much potential as a combat-heavy shooter featuring steampunk weapons, a deep story, and werewolf fights. I have a feeling that BradyGames thought the same thing, hence why they proposed creating such a strategy guide for Ready at Dawn and Sony. After playing the game the first time for review, I formulated three reasons why there would be a The Order: 1886 strategy guide: 1)collectibles, 2) stealth sections, and 3) trophy hunting.
For the most part, that is exactly why the strategy guide will be used at all as all of the combat is very straight forward and simple. At least what it does is rather spot on with minor, minor complaints.
When I say it’s spot on, I mean that I was able to obtain a Platinum trophy in the game. Doing so not only requires completing certain combat feats, but also finding every single gosh-darn collectible. And these collectibles are not straight forward and easy to find, unlike the firefights. I found several on my own, but some are way off the beaten path in areas I didn’t know I could even get to until the strategy guide pointed them out. Plus a few of the phonograph cylinders could be easily overlooked in one scene in particular, because if you searched certain spots before locating the cylinders, a cut scene would trigger and force you to move on.
As an added bonus for completionists, all of the collectibles are listed in an appendix as well as the walkthrough. I do have to caution users that you do have to follow the strategy guide verbatim for the collectibles, as once you pass through one area, there is no going back to retrieve that wayward collectible. You’ll have to wait until you complete the game, which will unlock all of the individual chapters to play.
When I looked through the appendices for the trophy list, as I always do, I was initially disappointed that the list did not include advice for where it is best to obtain these trophies. Some of the trophies, the “Brilliant!” trophy in particular that requires shooting an airborne grenade during Blacksight, seemed impossible for me to achieve without a smidge of help. I honestly thought I would never get all of the trophies, and I focused on getting what I could my second time through the game as well as the collectibles. I really, really wanted to make sure the guide was 100% accurate on the collectibles.
My fears were unfounded, as some of those more “complicated” combat trophies were mentioned in the game’s walkthrough, such as that Brilliant! trophy. And yes, that’s exactly how I obtained that specific trophy; it was 100% with the strategy guide’s help.
With the final need for the strategy guide, the stealth portions, the strategy guide was a bit lacking. There are two distinct sections that require stealth, and only one properly guided you. In the first section, which took place on the airship, the guide told you exactly where to hide, showed you with screenshots, and even marked it on maps for efficient stealth kills without getting seen. In the United India Company gardens, you’re simply told to go take down the six roaming around. Oh, okay then. A suggested order for taking them down would have been great, or even marks on the map of their patrols would have been useful. My first time playing was a nightmare as I didn’t have help (and the QTE mechanics with stealth kills only made it worse).
At least they were very detailed in how to survive each werewolf encounter, whether it’s a werewolf boss fight or fending off the regular Lycans. In fact, it was because of the strategy guide’s recommendation to equip the Falchion for its stunning ability that I was able to develop a quick rhythm when it came to putting them down.
Other than the collectible and trophy hunting, The Order: 1886 strategy guide kind of ends up as a glorified art book. Each page is just covered with screenshots, because if you had to rely on words to fill the pages, the guide would be thinner than it already is. There is no bonus art section in the back, because the book is already crammed full of screen shots and character art. If they added any more, they might as well create a flipbook depicting all of the cut scenes in the game.
Other than the lack of assistance with one stealth area, The Order: 1886 strategy guide does an amazing job at helping players cover every nook and cranny of the game. The game is short as it is, so you might as well try to get as much out of it as possible. Not to mention, if it can help me of all people obtain a Platinum trophy, it can help absolutely anyone achieve the same.
Author: Rick Barba
Editions available: Paperback
Acquired via Publisher