Two Horrifying Parts: The Evil Within Franchise Retrospective

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The Evil Within Retrospective

About The Evil Within and The Evil Within 2

Some of us prefer the bright rays of the sun and interactions that are solely beneficial. The rest of us thrive in light-deprived environments engaging in discourse with all manner of demons. For the latter, I present to you an entry from survival-horror pioneer Shinji Mikami,

The Evil Within 1 warps time, space, and aesthetics around us, giving us a group of detectives that follow a noir fashion sense that is undeniable. They bounce back and forth between environments that are untouched by technological advances while being submerged in them with the highest level of technology itself. They face monstrosities that occur through the corruption of humans and those that are exaggerations within the horrors of one’s mind.

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In both entries, you are assigned the role of Sebastian Castellanos, a detective whose riptide past has led to him being caught in a constant tsunami of his present. He, his partner, and their trainee have been assigned with investigating a disturbance at Beacon Mental Hospital, but what they find there is anything but just disagreement. Shortly therein, Sebastian and crew are transported to the terrors, horrors, and tortures of a realm within a STEM.

In The Evil Within 2 the plot thickens in the amount of substance Sebastian needs to numb himself to the pain and to how much growth the STEM idea has gotten. A fated reunion will occur that drags Sebastian back to someone else’s creation to revisit the grotesque and paralyzing forces of darkness. Will Sebastian be able to make his story a happily ever after or will this revelation truly damn him beyond redemption?

The Evil Within

PC, Playstation 3, Playstation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One

Detective Sebastian Castellanos, Krimson City P.D., is on a ride along with a police officer, his partner, and their trainee. They get the ominous call that something is going wrong at Beacon Mental Hospital. Is it a riot, an unruly patient, or a strike? Fortunately for us, it is so much more, unbeknownst to us and our protagonist, it will be even deeper than a singular, inexplicable entity laying ruin to the hospital.

As Sebastian emerges into the evil within the STEM environment, he finds that he is not alone. He is in a population that is becoming engorged with madness, insatiable for violence, and inexplicably becoming malformed. Peeling back that initial layer initially only seems to produce worse results, Sebastian is caught between an environment of someone’s past, a mental hospital, and a reality he can only catch flickers of.

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The story manages to tell us that not all battles can nor should be fought. They must be completely discarded and that takes more than just a day’s worth of work to recognize. Some of these fights show us that we cannot know everything in tumultuous situations, people can and do have ulterior motives, and that sometimes doing wrong by an individual is the only way to ensure right by those that deserve it.

These things considered, this game is “older” by mechanics standards, meaning that many controller layouts cannot be changed, camera inversion is not real, some actions are a bit slower, and because it is Bethesda, there are replicable glitches. Voice acting in this game has some duds as well, but I’d say it is truly a 50/50 between good and bad, emotions get lost and sometimes the conversation either goes on too long or just doesn’t adjust to the level of stress. The earlier stages in the game can be unnecessarily dark and there’s no real GOOD way to adjust it, so you may have to squirm by a bit before getting to the good stuff.

Overall even with its “age” the game’s story is interesting and compelling, and although hard to say original, the pieces that it uses help make it unique. The game is deserving of a try as it does have upgrade mechanics, stealth requirements, and gore that can give you both “EWWWWW” and gut-hurting levels of laughter. I give it a 7/10 and invite you to cordially join us in STEM to fight the evil within your fears.

The Evil Within 2

PC, Playstation 4, Xbox One

The Evil Within 2 shows us a beaten, broken man in Sebastian still struggling to obtain closure for what happened in Krimson City. He has pursued an organization known as Mobius and believes they have answers for both his wife and daughter. His mind addled in alcohol he proceeds on when he is not removed from consciousness.

We see him reliving the night that he lost everything and being accused of being disconnected from the world he was created. This will lead to a reunion with someone in Sebastian’s past to help him get the closure he seeks. To do so though, he must go with Mobius and further, revisit the immersion into a STEM environment.

A project by Mobius, this STEM environment is attempting to give people an immersion into a perfect world – separate from their droll, real-world existence. Unfortunately, a component that keeps this world stable, the “Core”, has gone missing thus causing the evil within this realm to rise to new heights and to have what appears to be a near-modern setting starting to fissure and float away.

Sebastian is tasked with locating and saving a team that Mobius has sent into this stem, the core, and more personally, understand how he is the one that constantly gravitates to these situations. As he progresses through the city of Union, he begins to understand that more and more, things he experienced in Krimson City may be more fiction than he can comprehend.

As Union continues to fall apart, it becomes more evident that everyone here is the evil within. However, he won’t be able to close the door on Mobius, if he can’t first find the “core” while also squashing some of the terror within the STEM. In Sebastian’s second dance with psychological pitfall, can he clean up a realm ruined by psychopathy and manage the anxiety, depression, and rage he’s created based on what he has been told?

The Evil Within Series Retrospective

The Evil Within 2 is a far more updated iteration of this story. The game features an upgrade system that separates the currency needed for character/ability growth and weapon enhancements. It still features Easter eggs that focus on the intellectual property of Bethesda (original or purchased from other developers). It takes steps to address the true psychology of the game, seeing Sebastian talking through things and reliving them to come to terms, instead of ALWAYS “shootin’ the bad guy!”.

As mentioned before, this is a Bethesda production, so there are replicable glitches, the camouflaging system and plant growth can become EXTREMELY disorienting, and some of the evil characters are extremely surface-level. These things see the franchise in a better spot and should there be a third installment, it would be arguable that there are small steps to take, to make sure it is the best they’ve created.

I would give this installment an 8/10. I would also point out that playing either installment on casual will make it far less survival-horror and more “fight’em if you got’em. The Evil Within manages to go places that horror hadn’t necessarily fleshed out all while asking “Will you be able to keep your flesh on?”.

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What Are Your Thoughts On The Evil Within?

Thank you for reading our thoughts on The Evil Within! What did you think about the games? Let us know on social media!

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