With the release of both Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and The Evil Within this week, the interwebs is full of reviews for both games. In an effort save you time and mouse-hand moving, we have doubled up today’s review roundup to include both titles.
We’ll start with Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and then move onto The Evil Within.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is due to be released for PC, PS3, and Xbox 360 on 17 October 2014 in SA.
The game is set on Pandora’s moon between the events of Borderlands and Borderlands 2, and brings with it a whole lot of new features and weapons.
First up, the Metacritic scores.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
Now, onto the international critics.
Despite its tendency to make you jump through hoops before getting to the good stuff, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel delivers where I expect it to as a Borderlands fan.
The new gear and low-gravity mechanics mixed with the zany skill trees makes for a fresh experience, and with Jack at the center driving the story forward, you get a deeper dive into the always entertaining, if well-traveled universe of Borderlands.
The Pre-Sequel is a happy to be Just Another Borderlands Game. I enjoyed it for that, but I also finished it thinking my time would’ve been better spent on one of the more original games that’ve released this year.
I love seeing Borderlands embrace the FPS trend of unconventional movement. Apart from the low-gravity leaping, though, The Pre-Sequel doesn’t do much to freshen what we’ve been playing since 2012.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is a funny cartoon shooter that compels you to keep playing and score more guns. Just like the last two. Laser weapons and moon bouncing add a little extra flavor, but if you don’t like Borderlands by now, this won’t change things.
The environmental art direction gets dull too quickly, the level design is lacking in basic conveniences, and a general sloppiness is present when looking closely. Some of the cool new features like multi-leveled areas and combining weapons could have been enhanced further if the user interface and systems had been updated to play to those strengths.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is a solid entry to the series, but I hope that the development team takes some of the failings to heart and delivers excellence in the future.
The Evil Within
The Evil Within is scheduled to be released for PC, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, and Xbox 360 on 14 October 2014. Local retailers have the game dated for a 17 October release.
The game, published by Bethesda Softworks, focuses on the story of detective Sebastian Castellanos who is ambushed and knocked unconscious while investigating a gruesome mass murder.
From there, it’s all about surviving.
Here are the Metacritic scores.
The Evil Within
Let’s see what the experts had to say.
Evil Within just plain doesn’t give you a fair chance to succeed. It doesn’t provide enough information for you to make good decisions and it handicaps your ability to fight well. It requires so much repetition that it can’t possibly maintain any sense of tension or unease, and its story is told so aimlessly that you’ll likely forget the plot between scenes.
It manages a few moments of inspiration, but their scarcity makes them feel like fortunate accidents rather than deliberate elements of the overall design. It’s covered in blood, but the only thing truly horrifying about The Evil Within is how disappointing it is.
The Evil Within has great moments where the excellent combat and creepy environmental design come together. But those moments are fleeting, inevitably sapped of their delightful terror by design choices that feel trapped in the glory days of a decade ago.
There’s something to be said for respecting your past successes and building off of them, but The Evil Within is only ever completely successful at half of that equation.
The Evil Within is a game where bullets are at a premium and the player must be economical with their resources, and adding more damage or a faster reload will often be the difference between life and death. Choose wisely.
Horror fans shouldn’t let the disappointing story deter them one bit, however. Few Paranormal Activity fans care how these malevolent demons come back again and again – what truly matters is that the audience’s nerves are frayed until they’re raw.
The Evil Within excels at keeping your palms sweaty while delivering a harrowingly rewarding gameplay trial. Watching the credits roll with a sigh of relief doesn’t feel like winning; it feels like surviving.
Will you be getting either the new Borderlands of The Evil Within? Let us know in the comments and forum.