Thief PC Technical Review



Author: Sean Ridgeley
Editor: Sean Ridgeley
Date: February 27th, 2014

Controls, UI, extras, conclusion

Controls

On the negative side, some controls are unintuitive (e.g. X to drop down), and mouse smoothing is enabled by default (disable it by navigating to C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Thief\ThiefGame\Config, opening ThiefInput.ini, and setting bEnableMouseSmoothing=true to bEnableMouseSmoothing=false).

On the positive, camera movement and aiming are smooth (at least with mouse smoothing disabled), keys are fully customizable (even to extra mouse buttons and sometimes left out keys like Right Shift, Right Alt, and so on), and mouse sensitivity and inversion can be tweaked as you like.

User interface

Menus are minimal but those that are present are responsive to the mouse and keyboard and well-sized for high resolutions. The HUD is also well-sized, as well as fully customizable; about 20 options can be turned on or off as you wish, to enhance gameplay and/or immersion.

While most HUD elements are slickly designed, the weapon bar and health indicator aren't: they look like something designed for a touch-heavy app and are very out of place. A more discrete, traditional design would be much more welcome.

Extras

Thief is an AMD and Nixxes partnered game, and as such, gets a boatload of PC goodies, including HD3D and Eyefinity support out of the gate, and Mantle and TrueAudio support later on through patches.

A handy benchmark is included for those interested in measuring performance. Unfortunately the minimum FPS value is at least sometimes bugged.

Finally, you can choose from Speakers and Headphones audio presets, for the best possible experience for your setup.

Conclusion

Thief is a thoroughly impressive PC title, with stunning visuals, plenty of PC specific options, and excellent performance. It'll get better soon, too, for AMD users, thanks to Mantle and TrueAudio support, for even better framerates, improved frame time latency, and enhanced sound.

The only significant downside is a sometimes clunky and awkward UI. Ultimately it detracts relatively little from the overall experience, and as such I can strongly recommend the game on its technical merits.

Thief is available now on Steam for $49.99.