The Evil Within 2 PC review in progress: a bold, bloody evolution of the survival horror genre


The Evil Within 2 PC review in progress: a bold, bloody evolution of the survival horror genre

Every time I think I have sussed out exactly what brand of horror The Evil Within 2 is it throws something new at me. Thrilling chase sequences seamlessly transition to patient stalking, nail-biting shootouts where every bullet matters lead into five-minute walking tours, supernatural absurdity exists side by side with gross-out gore. The scenery shifts around as much as the pacing: sterile facility, dank sewer network, small-town America zombie apocalypse, medieval torture dungeon, dilapidated mansion… you get the point.

After 15 hours, The Evil Within 2 has successfully managed to burrow its way under my skin so effectively that I barely slept last night. The culprit is a recurring vision that has managed to escape the game and embed itself, rather nastily, in my subconscious. The vision is of a pile of severed corpses assembling themselves into a cackling, writhing mass of limbs and faces – they do this all by themselves, gliding eerily across the floor at first before snapping into place like fragments of metal around a magnet. Good thing detective Sebastian Castellanos is not so easily perturbed.

Related: The Evil Within 2’s crafting, weapons, and upgrades explained.

In spite of some (hopefully) temporary mental scarring, I am thoroughly enjoying The Evil Within 2, and not just as a throwback survival horror experience. Unlike its predecessor, The Evil Within 2 forgoes tedious horror tropes like out-of-control psychiatric hospitals and brutes with chainsaws for a much more current take on this well-worn genre. That means monsters made of gore and goop, and mind-bending P.T.-esque environmental morphs, all housed in a modern, archetypal American town called Union.

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