The original “Darkness” game is mostly famous for getting slow-roasted by Yahtzee on his way to the Escapist and gamer love/hatedom. And to be honest…it was a bit of a muddled mess of a game. It wanted to be all things to all people.
If nothing else, the sequel is pretty clear: it wants to be one thing, and that one thing is a fairly linear first-person shooter.
So far, after two hours of play, there’s nothing brilliantly original here in terms of mechanics…but there’s also nothing they’ve gratuitously screwed up, either. Using your guns and your evil demon arms in tandem is easy to do and lots of fun, although it also means the challenge is largely “How do I want to kill this guy?” rather than “How am I getting through this level?” We do like that dual-wield is not only possible, but heavily encouraged, and the executions are utterly ridiculous, in a good way.
One thing we’re seeing, though, and it’s starting to be worrisome, are bugs. Lots of bugs. Enemies tripping and falling through the floor-type bugs. Also, when things get too intense, the frame rate glitches.
So far, “The Darkness II” is a game that might be solid getting compromised by a lack of polish. We’ll have a full review in a few days.
image courtesy 2K Games