‘Evil Within 2’ is on the way with fresh frights, more complex characters

Why it matters to you

Fans of The Evil Within can expect more scares, as well as an increased focus on characters, from the upcoming sequel.

When The Evil Within launched in 2014, hopes were high that it could revitalize the then-stagnating survival horror genre. After all, The Evil Within arrived when the Resident Evil series was in a tailspin (not anymore, thanks to Resident Evil 7), and was led by Resident Evil series creator Shinji Mikami. While The Evil Within received generally favorable reviews, many saw it as Resident Evil 4-lite, in reference to Mikami’s last survival horror title.

Following weekslong rumors of a follow-up for The Evil Within, Bethesda revealed The Evil Within 2 during its E3 2017 press conference. The Tango Gameworks-developed title will once again be helmed by Mikami. With the survival horror genre in a much better state than it was just a few years back, The Evil Within 2 will likely face increased scrutiny when it launches on October 13 (Friday the 13th). Will it eclipse the first one, which was merely good, and become great? Let’s hope. Here’s everything we know about The Evil Within 2 so far.

Enter a dark, terrifying dreamscape

From the initial cinematic trailer above, we know that detective Sebastian Castellanos returns as the protagonist in The Evil Within 2. Following the events of The Evil Within, Sebastian quickly hit “rock bottom,” became an alcoholic, and to make matters worse, no one believes the once-respected police detective’s spooky stories.

Once again, Mobius will be the primary villain. Mobius, as a refresher, is the shadowy organization that funded the creation of STEM, a machine that links minds, lets people experience the memories of others, and basically creates a dreamscape world à la Inception. But this time around, Sebastian’s qualms with Mobius will hit closer to home.

In the first game, we learned that Sebastian’s daughter, Lily, died in a mysterious house fire when she was in kindergarten. Only a short time has passed since the events of The Evil Within when Juli Kidman, Sebastian’s old partner, informs him that Lily is in fact alive, and being held and experimented on by Mobius.

The general arc of the sequel, from what we know, is that a down-on-his-luck Sebastian will have to reenter STEM, and explore a dark, sinister small town to save his daughter.

An emphasis on characters

In a gameplay preview with PlayStation, shown above, Tango Gameworks designer John Johanas said one of the aspects that the team wanted to improve upon from the original was the story, particularly when it comes to characters. “Sebastian is coming back, but he’s a much more relatable character,” Johanas said. The Evil Within 2 is being sold as a redemption story, with a focus on showing the evolution of Sebastian as he attempts to piece back together what remains of his life.

The Evil Within 2 will also feature more elements of psychological horror and internal trauma. However, the game will still be filled with blood and gore, action sequences, and jump scares, Johanas confirmed.

Resource management, crafting, weapons

Most survival horror games place an emphasis on inventory management and conservation. The Evil Within asked players to be careful not to waste bullets at inopportune times, and even let players craft new items to assist throughout the game’s chapters. While we don’t how much, or even if, the system will change in The Evil Within 2, we do know, thanks to Johanas’ sitdown with PlayStation, that crafting and resource management remain important gameplay aspects in The Evil Within 2.

In terms of weapons, Sebastian’s main arsenal from the original — pistol, shotgun, and crossbow — returns.

When can we reenter STEM?

The Evil Within 2 launches on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on October 13. We’ll continue to update this article as more information is revealed leading up to its launch.

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