Sold entirely apart from Dishonored 2, Death of the Outsider is a DLC that, in practice, requires a lot of knowledge of the complete game to function properly. Although mechanically this secondary adventure holds up very well, to understand its plot one must have played - or at least be somewhat familiarized - with the saga of Emily Caldween and Raven Attano.
Its purpose here is not exactly to realize what is understood as a conventional "revenge", but rather to end the manipulations of the Stranger, the entity attached to the Void that is directly and indirectly responsible for the events that brought chaos to the Empire. You take control of Billie Lurk (also known as Megan Foster), who must find ways to find and end this entity from time to time.
The different steps required to accomplish this task are divided into five stages filled with places to hide, ready-to-kill guards, and several hidden relics - something already standard for the series. However, the DLC loses a lot by taking any kind of moral choice and by eliminating the system of deaths and punishment inventive seen in the games that preceded it.
The beginning of a new chapter
Dishonored: Death of the Outsider is not exactly recommended for anyone who wants to enter the Dishonored universe now. This is because, in order to understand its history and the motivations for which Billie wants to eliminate Outsider, one must have a good prior knowledge of what happened in this universe.
You will even be able to draw the relationship between her and Daud, as well as get a brief summary of previous events, but there is enough information here to understand all the political games and tragic events related to the entity of the Void. You can even ignore all this and have fun, but that means losing some of the understanding of this universe so well built by Arkane studio.
Death of the Outsider is not exactly the end of the series itself
Without going into spoilers, Death of the Outsider is not exactly the end of the series itself, but it marks a very important transition point for her. What happens here allows the developer to create later chapters with quite different rules, getting away from the shackles she has created for herself.
I confess: I missed the presence of such striking figures as the targets present on Dishonored and its sequel, but in general, the plot maintains the same level of competence seen previously. Just do not be fooled: even sold separately from Dishonored 2, the DLC works much better when you've played the game previously.
New but limited powers
Death of the Outsider does not have a very wide selection of powers or tools, contrary to what happens in the star adventures by Corvo and Emily. From the beginning, the player has only three abilities: "displace", which allows teleporting, "foresight", which freezes time while you analyze the world around you and "semblance", which allows you to take on the face of any NPC for a limited time.
All abilities emerge from the beginning in their "definitive forms," and there is no system of progression associated with them. However, it is possible to change how they work through items known as bone charms that, in expansion, emerge much more generously than in the past.
Lurk's powers are variations of those used by Crow and Emily on Dishonored 2
In practice, Lurk's powers are variations of those used by Corvo and Emily on Dishonored 2, bringing some very interesting features of their own. Teleport, for example, does not happen immediately as you set a target: you simply dial and you have to press the skill button again to get to the desired location.
This, coupled with the fact that teleporting where an enemy is causing him to explode (at the cost of some damage), opens up several interesting tactical possibilities. For example, you can jump and kill one enemy, defeat another, and when surrounded, trigger the power to return to a safer vantage point.
This time there is no need to use items to retrieve your magic, which allows you to more freely test your skills and not get so frustrated when an error happens. However, I felt that this decision also made it possible to "abuse" a little too much of the game's systems - especially with regard to the continued use of foresight to mark enemies and investigate what was around.
One criticism, which has more to do with my style of play than the game itself, is that the use of "semblance" seemed to me very situational. It was a time when I had to sneak into an auction, the skill seemed too restrictive and ended up being pretty much forgotten most of the time - something that I recognize may be quite different for other players.
The decision to limit the available skills to only three options could be frustrating, were it not for the fact that the design of the phases closely matches this constraint. There is nothing as rewarding as the inventor's mansion of Dishonored 2, but there are enough secrets and alternative routes for you to wonder "how did I not see this before?"
On the other hand, I began to miss a wider variety of options as I neared the end of the DLC. After using the same tactics so often to "play" with artificial intelligence, I felt the need to have more ways to move through environments or deal with the challenges that came my way.
Most Inconvenient Mission
One of the biggest failures of Death of the Outsider and what makes it a "minor game" compared to the other games in the series, in my view, is that it presents a more inconsequential story. If, in the previous chapters, killing everything that comes to the fore, the level of the chaos of the world increased, making its mission more difficult, here the main difference between being sneaky and "getting crazy" is whether or not to achieve certain achievements.
There are some situations in which a quieter approach is necessary, but this has a rather secondary role. When your biggest punishment for being noisy is failing to perform a task that will only yield a few extra coins, there is no great reason to be frustrated when that careful approach is thwarted by a guard you had not noticed before.
Likewise, this lack of consequences affects some of the targets the player encounters along the way. There is no "punishment list" here as in the previous chapters, but rather a few key figures in the plot that you can decide or not kill while fulfilling your missions.
However, most often the difference between leaving a person dead or alive is finding a different speech or piece of paper as you walk through the scenarios. This makes these characters lose their importance a little in the eyes of the player - a real crime for a series that has brought us figures as cool as the inventor Kirin Jindosh in a not too distant past.
The end result is not frustrating, but it's not as rewarding as the more extensive games in the series. By making the number of bodies left by his path not make so much difference, Death of the Outsider leaves some of the qualities that helped the series to acquire so many fans to this day.
Way to the future
Dishonored: Death of the Outsider can be considered as a transition point for the series. Arkane did a good job of ending the "Kaldwin era" of the series, offering an adventure that can amuse and intrigue during the 8 to 10 hours you'll spend to finish all five stages.
Closing the loose ends left on Dishonored 2, the chapter focuses on a central event whose ramifications must bring great consequences for the future of the series. Only this single act ends up being enough to compensate for the fact that there are no great moral choices or very charismatic targets to assassinate, elements that were central to the previous chapters.
Overall, Death of the Outsider is not the most interesting entry in the series, but that does not stop him from being competent enough. If you have followed the history of political intrigue, betrayal and death that marks life in the Empire, this is an indispensable chapter to understand the future possibilities that the series can bring.
"Death of the Outsider is essential to understanding the ways the series will follow from now on"
The plot closes loose-ends and gives a new path to the series
Great ambience design
Skills bring good variations from previous powers
Very well built universe
The system of evolution arises in a limited way
Interesting targets missing to remove
Killing enemies brings few consequences to adventure