Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Release Date: August 14th, 2012
``Hard-core violence, awesome!
Another sequel… no thanks.
Horse riding: Count me in!
Says THQ on the box—I’ll pass.``
Welcome to the perpetual battle that has been transpiring in my mind for the past several weeks in the review period of Darksiders 2. I must be perfectly honest with you all and disclose that until quite recently I had never played the original Darksiders. Because of this, I was not excited, even in the slightest, for the sequel…until I played Darksiders.
I absolutely hated myself for having left this absolute gem of a game on the shelf for two years. So I decided I wouldn’t make the same mistake again and ran to my Xbox to put the Darksiders 2 game disk in.
From the second you load up the game to the moment when you reach the explosive finale, the game evokes a sense of nostalgia—and that is certainly not a bad thing. For every scene that may seem a little like Déjà vu, the game throws something insane at you to keep you intrigued. The action is thrilling, the combat is flawless and intelligent and the story is very strong.
In Darksiders 2 you play Death, the brother of War, whose responsibility is to absolve his War`s guilt in prematurely beginning Armageddon. Darksiders as a franchise has been able to do something in which countless other IPs have failed—delivering on deep characters whose stories actually matter. When this console generation reaches its climax, I hope that Darksiders 1 and 2 will achieve the lofty status it deserves among the Gears of War, and Uncharteds and the Assassins’ Creeds. The story has slight redundancy in the fact, that some of the accompanying characters are rehashed, but at the same time, it never inspired me to skip the cut scenes (like so many other action games).
In the day and age of “shoot anything that moves” and “insert explosion here” game design, the puzzles in the game caught me slightly off guard. This is certainly a good thing, seeing as although the puzzles are seemingly difficult, they are not impossible—any gamer will inevitable feel like Sherlock after finally receiving their Volta and figuring out the trick. Additionally, I must say that the puzzles in the game provided a nice break from the intense action and proves that Vigil as a developer has more beneath it than gratuitous violence. Despite the fantastic puzzle elements, I always wanted to go back and behead a few more demons or pop some more coffins out of the ground, I even found myself dismembering these enemies in my dreams (don’t worry VIGIL, I’ll send you my therapy bill ASAP).
One thing any Darksider fan will also notice is that Death as a character feels much more agile and physical. This provides players with more choices on how to take on enemies. This customization extends even further in the form of the weapons. Whether you want to use Death`s signature scythe or a less traditional tactic of letting coffin dwelling demons take care of the enemies. Despite the tone and animation of the game being phenomenal, it's a shame that the graphics (at times) look downright muddy, especially in more complex, open ended settings.
After a malicious drought of big games this summer, Darksiders 2 is without a doubt worth your time and money. To make this package deal even more satisfying, if you buy Darksiders 2 for a limited time at Wal-Mart, you will receive a free copy of the original game at no extra cost—that is shitload of demon slaying, especially if anyone missed the original Darksiders when it rolled around in 2010. No self-respecting gamer, or action-adventure fan can afford to miss this glorious game, it is an absolute must-buy!
- Environments seem bland at times
- Graphics range from beautiful to muddy
- Some graphical slowdown