gamers (100%) found this review helpful
I was looking forward to Lords Of Shadows 2 having very much enjoyed the first one. After seeing countless gameplay videos, it made it even more enticing to want to play because action was the main focus. Finally, a Castlevania game that went back to it's roots. After having played it, however, I have to say that as great as this game looks and sounds, nothing else is worth your time. First of all, the story is horrible. Set in some future time period, most of the first half of the game has you exploring some biochemical facility with the occasional flashback to the castle to regain some lost power. The level design allows for a more open world experience, but as you navigate each part, you're still really on a linear path. Dracula's weapons are cool and fun to use, much like Dante's different combination of weapons in Devil May Cry. The gameplay takes a page from God Of War and you'll find that you use many of the same techniques and combos to kill your enemies. As you collect experience you can level up your mastery of your weapons by gaining 100% for each skill. All this sounds great, but it gets very repetitive and is not as smooth or fluid as God Of War's style of combat. Some additional gimmicks are thrown in, for example, stealth sections that require you to move undetected by turning yourself into a rat or by distracting your enemy as you slink past them. What makes these areas frustrating is that they're totally unnecessary, poorly played out, and just downright stupid. The game even goes as far as disables your weapons during these sections. The second half of the game fairs a little better, but you're still going through the same motions as you did in the first half. And not a good thing when the game takes about 15 hours to complete. A couple of things this game has is an awesome soundtrack that fits the mood and a slight improvement in graphics. It's worth renting to see what the hype is about, but I wouldn't shell out $60.
Before renting or playing this game keep in mind that professional reviews are reviewing this game based on peer industry standards. This does not negate whether you will enjoy the game or not, a alot of movies have gotten horrible reviews and gone on to surpass oscar winner's in total gross. Also remember that Lords of Shadow was not acclaimed right away either, a lot of negative reviews came in, and it wasn't until the sequel was announced that people actually started giving the game a chance, and deemed it epic.
That being said, I think Mercury Steam kind of enclosed themselves in regard to the design based on the ending of the last game. It was cool, but in practice it did not set the series up for a great game. In trying to please the fan's (ie. open world, free camera, bigger environments, deeper combat) the time was taken away for what would've given a great story. This company is not Naughty Dog, or Sony Santa Monica, and I feel that they bit off more than they could chew with out Kojima over seeing the project (even in a small amount); or even outside project testing. To their defense I feel that given the time period chosen, and the subject of the game the sneaking is appropriate; not saying it was the best choice but it did fit the story.
It seems to me that it would've been better for them to skip putting mirror of fate on 3DS and include the story into this game, and that it would've made a better argument in the long run. For what they set up at the end of Lords of Shadow, I feel they did a good job. Was it the epic story I was expecting, no. But it is good enough that it should be given a chance for each individual to decide how they feel about it.
The game was fun and I enjoyed it. If you like GOW you will enjoy it. Yes the ending is not fulfilling but leaves it open for another game. Some things could have been done better but we can say that about any game. Its not a silly RPG its an action adventure game and has all the elements. It should have gotten at least a 7.5 on IGN but they cater to certain labels. These people that have to high expectations and give it a 5 or below score are silly. Dont listen to them. Its worth renting and playing all the way through. Maybe DLC will make it worth buying. Try it its a good game, not great but good and has fun elements.