by Johnathan Irwin
reviewed on PC
Forget What You Know... (cntd)
It’s frustrating in that your items are now even harder to come by than in the predecessor so while you can engage in combat you’re not going to want to often. And when you’re accidentally discovered, you may find yourself cursing your misfortune later when you’re outnumbered with not even enough ammo left to have a remote chance of survival. The game is rough at times, and borders on outright unfair at others. Very rarely, will you feel like you’re having a walk in the park if you play on anything above the base difficulty. At least you have more control over how you upgrade this time around, you won’t feel obligated to drop points into everything; just what you need to survive.
Gameplay and setting aren’t all that’s gotten quite the upgrade, graphically the game has upstaged its predecessor quite noticeably. Where The Evil Within was a mix of jaw dropping visual spectacles and head-scratching drops in quality dotted here and there throughout the game, The Evil Within 2 is a consistent visual treat; and the monsters especially benefit from it, as now some of them have pushed me to “NOPE” moments where I have to pause the game and collect myself. I never experienced that in the first game, even in moments of fear, just because the creature models weren’t quite what I was hoping for.
Even the story has had its share of improvements, with characters now having much more soul to them and the plot going from interesting, to enthralling. You’re cheering for Detective Castellanos the whole time, even as you control him. You want him to succeed, because in this nightmare he lives there are fates far worse than death that await around every twist in the plot; there are times where if I were in his shoes, I might just let the monsters do me in and be done with it.
I wouldn’t say it’s quite the mind-tearing experience that was the plot of Silent Hill 2 or has any jaw dropping twists like Shutter Island, but I’m just glad to see improvements where they were desperately needed in the narrative. The story of the first game was fun, but a jumbled mess lacking an cohesion. The Evil Within 2 is more delicate in its approach, not just throwing things at you on a whim for the sake of a twist.
Perhaps the biggest blessing though is that not only does the game look better, it doesn’t run like a jumbled mess; and they ditched the ugly black bars that took up far too much of the screen in the name of attempting a widescreen experience.
The Evil Is In
They saying is that the third time is the charm, but for Tango Gameworks they seemed to have gotten it right on round 2. The Evil Within 2 rises far above its predecessor, drenched in blood and laughing in a twisted madness. It’s still far from the perfect horror game, but for those looking for a blend of stealth, action, and scares this is probably the best option with Halloween just around the corner.
A bigger emphasis on stealth, more satisfying combat, better technical polish, a good mix of open world and contained horror environments, a more cohesive story with more interesting characters.
Items are almost unfairly scarce at times.