The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

'Darkness 2' is Incredibly Violent Fun

2 min read

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2K Games’ recent release, “The Darkness II” puts players into a gloriously vivid, ridiculous and violent comic book in an adventure that’s as fun as it is bloody.
“The Darkness II” is the sequel to the 2007 game based on the comic book series from the mid-90s. The franchise follows an up and coming mobster, Jackie Estacado, who becomes possessed by the ageless demonic power the Darkness on his 21st birthday.
The first “Darkness” game weaved a surprisingly poignant tale of demons and slaughter and young love.
While “The Darkness II” tries to mimic the emotional impact of its predecessor it often falls short, due in large part to the difficulty of following up on the events of the original game.
But, where the game fails emotionally it succeeds in over the top comic book brutality.
Jackie Estacado has the ability to “quad-wield” weapons, offering players the ability to fire two guns at once while simultaneously manipulating two fanged black serpents the Darkness manifests from Jackie’s bodies.
While the shooting mechanics in the game work just fine, using the Darkness to perform ridiculously over-the-top executions is where the game will truly hook you.
Eating your enemies’ hearts gives increases your health, and at one point early in the game Jackie is able to use his Darkness serpents to rip someone’s heart out through their mouth.
Those who think the game has gone all out with the violence right of-the-bat will be shocked, as later in the game Jackie unlocks the ability to perform “assecutions.” If you’ve ever wanted to tear a bad guy’s heart out through his butt, “The Darkness II” is your game.
The disturbing violence is offset, however, by the cell-shaded comic book animation of the game.
While many blockbuster games like “Battlefield 3” or “Mass Effect 3” hang their hats on photorealistic graphics, “The Darkness II” makes use of an animation style that puts you into a vibrant, living comic book. It’s difficult not to stop and look at the most boring parts of the environment like an elevator door or a couch just to examine how much it looks like a panel straight from a comic book.
The campaign of “The Darkness II” will take players through graveyards, mansions and carnival grounds, all the while spattering Jackie’s tale with blood and guts.
Clocking in at just over six hours it weaves a tale that throws together the best parts of a mobster movie, Tim Burton aesthetic and “Shutter Island” to create a game that probably