By Gemma ~@Juicygamereviews
It's dark, I have been bitten and I have just narrowly escaped a twisted, screaming being. All I can hear is the splattering of thick, heavy blood as it hits the floor. Squelch, squelch, squelch. My heart is pumping and my torch is weak. Where the fuck do I go next?
Yes, for the past few weeks I have been playing my way though The Evil Within. I must state that I played this game at Eurogamer and I hated it. It was buggy, patchy (areas were not completed) and totally confusing. When I bought the game, I wondered if I had made a mistake?
Photo Credit: JP Professional Photography
Right off the bat, I am not regretting it. I felt an instant connection with the game. Waking up, dazed and confused Sebastian, our main protagonist is caught in the middle of some twisted paranormal episode. From there, the journey unfolded. Graphically, The Evil Within is not the best and the frame rate is a tasteful 30fps on the PS4 and XBox One. I didn't notice any frame rate glitches, fortunately although some reviewers have stated different.
If I said to you "Resident Evil 4", would you know what I meant? I felt ripples of nostalgia burst through me as I played The Evil Within. The dark towns, barns, dilapidated stone houses and the undead carrying torches, were all packed in to the early stages of The Evil Within just as they were in Resident Evil 4. Crucially, this was the difference in me playing the final game compared to my shoddy experience at Eurogamer. I felt so content with the reminder of Resident Evil 4 that I fell in love with The Evil Within. I was hooked. Naturally, those connections seemed inevitable as Shinji Mikami developed both games (amidst other classics), one of my favourite game developers.
The level of gore and horror in The Evil Within reached a frightening peak. I liked the way the game made me feel as though I had to escape. Heart pounding and barely any ammo I found myself searching for a way to escape and fast! At times, I found this to be a disadvantage also. Sebastian moved very slow and lacked agility. No matter what I did, I lacked the pace needed for a successful escape. Be prepared to die lots when you play through The Evil Within. Along with this and the average graphics, it was clear the game lacked polish.
Recently, I've been relishing how sound effects and music can amplify a gaming experience, especially as I play with a Turtle Beach Headset. The Evil Within is pretty solid when it comes to sound. It didn't reach heights like I heard in Alien Isolation but I was happy with the overall score, in particular the distant sound effects of the dripping liquid from a ceiling or the sound of steel slicing through bone during a torture in the next room. It was all in there and I felt content with it. Again, the lacking came within the voice acting. The annoyance of a mental patient, Leslie, and his seemingly pre-pubescent little squeak drove me insane! Sebastian's voice was also questionable at times! Did his voice fit the character or not? That is still unanswered. What are your feelings. Let me know in the comments guys.
Survival was at the heart of my campaign during The Evil Within. Not just for me but for my fellow NPC's. Joseph and Juli joined my quest and proved to be quite an asset more than a burden. I had to rescue and preserve their lives as much as my own. Usually I am skeptical of such tasks but I really enjoyed this aspect of the game. There were more characters to learn about in The Evil Within but I found myself transfixed on Tatiana, the nurse who was located in a locked ward of a mental hospital. I found this place to be of solace and respite as I came here to level up and save my progress. No surprise then that Tatiana's words were "This place is necessary for you. You're always welcome here".
The Evil Within is a solid introduction from Shinki Mikami on next Generation consoles (although available on last gen). Gore, suspense, nostalgia and twisted story line are traits that are packed in to the rewarding experience. I give The Evil Within a bone cracking 7.9 out of 10.
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