I deleted my old post and revised it since I do have something to say about the game once I beat it. The game had a lot of potential, but unfortunately it wasn’t what I was hoping for.
Call me picky when it comes to survival horror games, but I believe concepts do play a major role in horrifying audience. Take for example, Silent Hill 2 will always be my favorite survival horror game because the developers know exactly how to define horror and create a game which still haunts me till this day. I learned to love the fog in winter because I experienced the chillness in Silent Hill. But this post is not going to be about the survival horror genre or Silent Hill games. This is about The Evil Within 2 and my thoughts on it. Please keep in my mind, I am speaking from an artist perspective and from someone who dislike movie-like games.
With any artistic medium (I think some video games are a form of art), it’s wise not to imitate even if you are under the spell of nostalgia. I am not a fan of imitation. You can admire a successful game that haunts people–but reinventing the same thing doesn’t frightened people (at least for me) because we already walked that path before. The Evil Within 2 feels like a confused horror amusement park. It cannot decide whether it wants to be an action or horror game. Hey, some people might like this game for the way it is and good for them. Personally, I don’t like games that feel generic.
What disappointed me about the game is its strong opening. The game introduction was atmospherically scary. Yes, there was a little chase here and there. Fun for a bit, but then it got sloppy as soon as all the suspense is dispersed and the climax is reached. From there on, I found myself playing a cheap thrill. If gameplay is lacking then I expect a decent story, but this game has neither of them. The game design feels unpolished. Why recycle boss enemies once it has been defeated? Why do I need to level up my skill trees in order to make the game a bit more fluid? There is some obvious technical issues with the game, especially in combat. The cheesy dialogues amplify the cliche plot. I started asking myself, “Why I am playing this game?” I forced myself to complete the game anyway because I hate not completing games. I would have enjoyed the game more playing as Juli Kidman because she is an interesting character.
I enjoyed the first game even though it was not perfect. So I was hoping The Evil Within 2 is more of a refined version of the first. Sadly no. The only thing that Evil Within 2 has is a simplified story. You play as a detective who is given the chance to save his daughter. In my honest opinion, the game failed to horrify and tell a good story because its attention was focused on trying to be a movie.
So no, I do not recommend this game if you have particular taste for horror games like me. I prefer the earlier Resident Evil games over The Evil Within series now that I have finished the game. This game is designed intentionally for the mass market (movie watchers), and there is nothing wrong with that. This game is just not my cup of tea.