Review by Man0nFire_

"Half Decent Game"

I had every intention of adding this to my backlog of stuff to play, but since my Jak & Daxter Collection came really late and I don't wanna start anything else til Twisted Metal, I ended up popping this in when I got it. Now, it's not a horrible game by any means, but it's not very good.

First of all, I have the PS3 version. The game takes a couple seconds to load up and a minute or 2 to load trophies and settings because I don't think it installs anything to the hard drive. Some of the loading times are actually kinda long. Not Rage long but still a little long none the less.

My biggest complaint about the game is the lack of variety. All levels play almost the same (there's a few that are basically on rails or walk over here, walk there, run from these guys and escape and 10 minutes later you're onto the next chapter) and are basically fighting your way from point a to point b to get to fight this guy at point c. You do get to control the Darking, but it's twice and both sections feel quite limited. The enemies do change every other level or so and as you progress through the game and become more powerful, the enemy types also seem to become more tedious. This isn't a bad thing, but they just keep coming and coming. You'll find yourself clearing out an area then walking around the corner and doing the same exact thing. This is how almost every level has panned out. Sometimes you have to chase down a boss...but on your way to chasing down that boss you have to clear out more open areas of enemies! Needless to say, after a few chapters it gets tedious and far too repetitive. Shoot out lights (whether they be hanging above you or worn by random bad dudes), blow up generators, kill 41 baddies, turn around and run to beginning of level through more baddies, possibly a burning building, and hop in your casually-waiting-for-your-return limo or it'll just fade and next thing you know, you're somewhere else. The fact that the campaign is really short really amplifies that repetitive feeling.

I hadn't finished the campaign at the time of writing this, but now that I have, I was correct in assuming what I had left to finish was nothing more than kill wave after wave of bad guys and fight the main villain...and end up in Hell but that's only if you chose one of the options closer to the end. Also, I started on the hardest difficulty and I died only a handful of times and still finished the campaign in a little over 5 hours. So, with a really short and super repetitive campaign, you're probably wondering "well...what else can this game offer then?" and well...the game does have a few tiny bits you can replay.

After you complete the campaign, you can play it again in new game + mode (which honestly, unless you're a trophy/achievement hunter, you won't want to) which will carry over your upgrades and relics so you can find the remaining ones and try to max out all of your upgrades and get a shiny trophy for completing the game again (which if you're like me, you just changed the difficulty to easy after beating it on Don and finished this play through in under 5 hours). But if the campaign isn't to your liking, then you'll be even more disappointed when you hop into the Vendetta's campaign. These missions can be played either with friends online or by yourself. They run alongside the main story and are kinda meant as a behind the scenes/this is what's going on while you were killing more of these guys in the campaign. But if you didn't really pay much attention to the story (and I wouldn't blame you), then these will feel like more of the same. They're cool if you only play 1 mission as each of the characters that it lets you chose from for these missions, but then you'll realize that you're doing the same exact thing you were doing in the campaign and become bored with it pretty quickly. Luckily, the Vendetta's campaign is maybe an hour long so at least it feels like the right amount of time for what it is. It's not overly difficult and there are gratuitous amounts of ammo boxes laying around so you will never find yourself without enough ammo for the dozens of dudes you'll encounter.

Overall, the game isn't horrible but it's just not very fun. There isn't a huge variety of execution animations so you'll grow tired of them rather quickly and the game doesn't really offer any variety of missions in the chapters to really hold your interest for much more than an hour. The co-op missions are just as tedious, but will appeal to anyone who does find themselves really into the story. I'd suggest giving it a rental but with other games on the market that offer a far superior experience and more bang for your hard earned buck, definitely don't waste your time on this one unless you're a hardcore fan of the comics. If you do feel like it's a game you must own, don't shell out more than 20 bucks for it because the lack of content or variety in gameplay is a real downer and will bore you pretty quickly if you're not a fan of the comics.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Originally Posted: 02/27/12

Game Release: The Darkness II (US, 02/07/12)

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