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The Evil Within isn't looking very evil so far - Destructoid




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The Evil Within  




The Evil Within isn't looking very evil so far photo
The Evil Within isn't looking very evil so far

5:45 PM on 04.11.2014

Impressions from PAX East


A behind-closed-doors play session for upcoming survival horror game The Evil Within wasn't as evil as I hoped it would be. I still have high hopes for the next game from Resident Evil vet Shinji Mikami and his new studio, Tango Gameworks, but the two gameplay sessions I saw today at PAX East seemed to draw a bit too much on his past works, and not enough on the freaky stuff.

Some of the imagery from the new trailer had my hopes up, but we didn't see much of that in our demo today.

The first live play demo had protagonist Sebastian stuck in an elevator in a world that seemed to constantly shift and crumble, like a crazy sideways demonic earthquake. This elevator fell into standing water, and Sebastian had to pry himself out and into the open. Once out, he was able to walk through a city that regularly rumbled with ground shifts; its sky looked like a missing scene from the movie Inception.

The first half of this demo worked out to be a laid back walking tour of this upended city. I suppose that school busses falling from the sky were supposed to be exciting, but this and other big set piece events fell completely flat for me as they looked triggered and mechanical. Buildings fell into the ground and walls slid in to narrow passageways, but they really seemed to pose no threat to the player. While these events may sound exciting to read about, they didn't do much for me. 

When a shotgun finally came out, I got my hopes up. A being that looked like he used to be a fireman appeared around a corner, and before he could pose a threat, he was shot and then set on fire, making a strange moaning noise as he burned.

As the player navigated through a maze of gates and other barriers, more enemies like these seemed to pop up for what looked to be a bit of target practice. None of the enemy appearances looked to be anywhere close to threatening, though. For this demo, Sebastian was armed to the teeth with all kinds of guns and grenades. Headshots and grenades took these enemies down too easily. I liked seeing chunks of flesh flying everywhere, and the gunplay looked sharp, but the feeling was more Gears of War than survival horror, save for the huge water monster that reminded me of the water boss from Resident Evil 4.

There was at least some evil in the second demo we saw. I dug the closed corridors of what looked like it used to be a mental hospital, but what now might be a stairway to hell. After freeing himself from a chamber, Sebastian entered a dark, foggy hallway to find what could be Pyramid Head's (Silent Hill) counterpart waiting for him. A large creature wearing what looked to be a butcher's apron had a metallic box for a head -- Boxhead. Some close-quarters shooting made it look like this thing would be pretty hard to take down with anything but a shotgun, and some later handgun shots proved this. 

Gameplay was mostly room running to find a clear shot, and then taking it before getting clobbered -- if you've played any recent Resident Evil game, you know this kind of fight well. The demo showed several of these fights, and had Sebastian using several different kinds of weapons to hold these box-headed things back. One weapon allowed for different types of bolts to be used. The freeze bolt froze a box head temporarily, letting Sebastian finish it off with a shotgun. 

For this entire demo, a toxic fog filled the floor, and seemed to affect both the player and the enemies. The last 30 percent of a gauge at the top right of the screen was colored red, and marked with a skull and crossbones, so you can be sure the air is bad news. At some points in the demo, Sebastian would open valves to regulate the air. At one point, after turning it up in one room, one of the box-headed enemies ripped its own head off!

Running down a stairway into a lower level, Sebastian came across a box on the floor. This box seemed to rattle a bit, and then suddenly jumped and attached itself to his face, with tentacles grabbing on to take over his head. 

While the second demo reminded me a bit of The Evil Within's earlier showings, gameplay looked more tense than scary, and certainly not evil. The backdrops to this action could have been pulled from a Silent Hill game, and they looked appropriately spooky, but when combined with the play the overall feel was pretty tame. 

And the first demo was a bit too third-person shooter for me. I like my survival horror games to be more about horror than anything else, but nothing shown here was scary by any measure. Interesting? Sure. This is a game that I definitely want to play. But what was shown today barely touches weird fun house territory for me. Nothing scary or freaky. It's like a tame, supernatural Resident Evil.

I'm hoping that there's more evil to be found further within.





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The Evil Within Updates, Screenshots, & Videos







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timeline following:
The Evil Within



10:45 AM on 09.29.2014
The Evil Within has gone gold so let us hack up some bodies

I'm good and ready to jump into The Evil Within. So ready. The game has gone gold across all platforms, says Bethesda. That means that we're on track for the October 14 release of Shinji Mikami's latest survival horror, brin...more



2:30 PM on 09.25.2014
Make sure to set aside a whole lot of hard drive space for The Evil Within

The Evil Within players might experience something slightly terrifying before ever booting up the game -- the amount of hard drive space that Shinji Mikami's latest creation takes up. Bethesda just released the system re...more



3:00 PM on 09.17.2014
Watch Sebastian stumble around a lot in this Evil Within trailer out of TGS 2014

We're marching ever closer to the release of The Evil Within, which is headed to a retailer near you October 14. Bethesda's latest horror IP is shown off in the latest trailer here, straight out of TGS 2014. If you've been t...more



1:30 PM on 09.10.2014
Try not to think about cantaloupe while playing The Evil Within

I get such a kick out of seeing how things are made, especially when the people making said things are having a blast. This behind-the-scenes footage for The Evil Within is exactly what I'm talking about. We're given a glimp...more



2:00 PM on 09.03.2014
Rejoice, Europeans as you get to experience The Evil Within early

As someone living in the UK, it's super frustrating to see notifications pop up on a console or Steam showing my North American friends playing new releases when I usually have to wait a few more days to get my hands on the s...more



4:41 AM on 08.26.2014
The Evil Within rocks some recognizable voice talent in this new trailer

Ever wanted Watchmen's Jackie Earle Haley to taunt you? Now you can with Haley lending his voice as The Evil Within's main antagonist, Ruvik. But he's not the only recognizable celebrity to have climbed aboard The Evil Withi...more



6:30 PM on 08.18.2014
There's plenty of death in this hour-long The Evil Within video

Based on this hour-long play session of The Evil Within, I'm not expecting to be particularly scared by the game, but I am expecting to die quite a few times. Given its limited checkpoints, the fear of failure and having to ...more



8:43 AM on 08.13.2014
The Evil Within Season Pass announced, will cost $19.99

Bethesda has just given Destructoid word of a Season Pass for The Evil Within, which will cover three add-ons for the game -- it's priced at $19.99. The first DLC will involve The Keeper, which is said to be a "sadistic" coll...more



3:00 PM on 08.11.2014
Setting children on fire will get you an M rating, apparently

To the surprise of absolutely no one, the ESRB has given Tango Gameworks' upcoming survival horror title The Evil Within a Mature rating. Content descriptors include Blood, Gore, Intense Violence, and Strong Languag...more



9:00 PM on 07.30.2014
Which of these alternate The Evil Within covers do you like best?

I tend to prefer alternate game cover art over the "real" thing and The Evil Within is no exception. Publisher Bethesda has three covers for us to vote on and whichever piece wins will be used on the inside sleeve for the lau...more




Survival Horror

10:45 AM on 09.29.2014
The Evil Within has gone gold so let us hack up some bodies

I'm good and ready to jump into The Evil Within. So ready. The game has gone gold across all platforms, says Bethesda. That means that we're on track for the October 14 release of Shinji Mikami's latest survival horror, brin...more



2:30 PM on 09.28.2014
Ayane from Dead or Alive is in the new Fatal Frame

The Fatal Frame series has always been subtle in its use of sexuality, utilizing an undercurrent of vulnerability and otherworldly intimacy to give players a mix of softness and dread. Some of them play with sexual themes mor...more



8:00 PM on 09.26.2014
Something's stalking us in Alien: Isolation's television ad

The latest piece of media for Creative Assembly's impending Alien: Isolation prods "How will you survive?" It's a fair question. With that hulking Xenomorph nimbly crawling out of the airshaft, stalking its prey before terrifyingly ending its life, it'll certainly be a tough task. When the game releases on October 7, the most likely answer will probably be "There's a good chance we won't."more



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