Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 Review - A Total Drain

chozo_hybrid

What is a man? A miserable little pile of secrets.
Jul 15, 2009
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anthony87 said:
Meh.

I played the demo and quite enjoyed it.
Same here, it would seem, if one liked the previous title then they should like this one. I'll be grabbing it when I'm done with the dozen games I'm currently playing.
 

Baresark

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Dec 19, 2010
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I don't know, so far the game is great for me. The combat is fun. The world is mostly really good and I have no issues what so ever with any of the character. My one complaint is that I wish they kept it stage based like the previous entry. I actually enjoyed that element. With that, if I wanted to show my girlfriend something that was really cool (for example), I could just go back to that stage and experience the story again. It also made it much more approachable when I don't have a lot of time. I have 20 minutes, I'll play this stage. That rocketed the first one to a great 29 hours for me, and I didn't even get all the unlocks. This one is just as good, but the open world design is blah (like most of them), and I much preferred the locked camera of the first game because it gave you much better situation awareness which made the combat system technically better, thought the combat is really fun on this.

Also, the complaint about what Dracula is doing or being like is fuckin' old at this point. I'm really confused by what you think Dracula should be doing? What is he supposed to be doing with himself, designing parking decks? It just doesn't make sense.

Anyhoo, I quite like it. And if I read some reader reviews, a lot of people seem to be. The reviewers on the other hand, well they seem to be wanting something more than it is. That's fine, have at it. The reviews have been very all over the place, and the only reason I can think of is that it's a niche title that is not meant for everyone.
 

sXeth

Elite Member
Legacy
Nov 15, 2012
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I'm alright with it though it should be noted that God of War never grabbed me, so I'm not as burnt out on that whole gametype. The depowering is a bit cludgy, but these things always are. They were perhaps overeager to lead with the big guns on the first post-tutorial fight (was that the demo?) and probably could've done better if they'd not done the "taste of power" beforehand.
 

RJ 17

The Sound of Silence
Nov 27, 2011
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Awwww, and I had such high hopes for getting to play as Drunkula!

Seriously, when I heard that LoS2 had you set to play as Dracula, I was like "Holy shit! Gonna buy the FUCK out of this game!" So much to the point that I actually went out and picked up a used copy of the first LoS for about $10 (before that, the last Castlevania game that I had ever bought/played was Lament of Innocence...the OTHER "How It All Began" story for Castlevania :p). Took it home, played it for a bit, think I ended up getting past the Werewolf boss before I got bored and hadn't touched it since.

So yeah, while I was very excited to hear about this game and the possibility to play as frickin' Dracula, I'm pretty glad that playing the first game for a bit cooled down my enthusiasm enough to not rush out and buy this game immediately. Judging by this review, it's pretty much exactly what my pessimistic side figured it would be.

Thank God for Jim.
 

ZippyDSMlee

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Sep 1, 2007
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I dunno LOS was as bad as LOI and COD they all had issues just in different areas. Tho I have no doubt LOS2 is a slog I will still get around to it....just so much to get through on my back log. Onimusha 3(which has the worst voice acting ever),New Vegas,Skyrim,FF 12, a replay of LOS to check out the DLC.

WHat CV needs is better level design they need to look at level layouts from Zelda and Metroid Prime only slightly bigger. Combat is improved but needs to incorporate different weapons if the whip is not the main/only one.
 

TheTygre

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Jun 17, 2009
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This game is stupid as Hell. It doesn't explore any ramifications to Dracula being in the modern age. He still does all his stealth missions in a giant red cape. He turns into a swarm of rats and throws bats at enemies. Satan apparently rules the world via genetic engineering space marines. You recharge health by eating raw human hearts from a statue, and upgrade your life bar by sticking your arm into the Hellraiser cube.

In short, I fucking love it.

It was surely unintentional, but somewhere along the line it transcended its own ridiculousness to just barely lift itself off the ground and then surely its ascension with juvenile glee. There is no grounding or restraint. It's like if a thirteen year old came up with a vampire superhero, (But not a fourteen year old! No, by fourteen they've found out about World of Darkness and shoot for something 'deep'.) with all the glee and self-indulgent grandeur that implies.

As for the story? Well, forgive me, but I don't recall Castlevania games ever being narratively engaging, or any Western character action past the PSP God of War games doing the same, lest we forget the 'Shakespearean' writing of DmC.
 

margibso

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Nov 19, 2009
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Reading this makes me want to play a game based on Hellsing. None of this brooding anti-hero, instead barely constrained KILL ALL THE THINGS.
 

Ulquiorra4sama

Saviour In the Clockwork
Feb 2, 2010
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I've only been able to sink a few hours into the game so far and overall... it's been pretty meh so far.

I had quite a bit of fun with the first game, sure it wasn't Metroidvania like some clearly expected, but on a whole i had fun with it. At least the combat in it was interesting when you unlocked more of the combos and skills and aesthetically it was pretty damn sweet-looking. The story aspect was quite lacking however.

In LoS2 so far i'm not seeing much of the combat enjoyment, but who knows, maybe that'll improve once i gain more moves here too. The story is a snooze though, more so than in the first game, and the open world seems to be there solely to mimic the metroidvania people wanted last time without actually considering how to make exploration fun or co-operate with the plot in any way. Also: Why the hell do i have to get Dracula shoved in my face every time i die? It's weird...

Visuals have only gotten upgraded though. Gonna play it some more over the weekend so i'll just have to see if things get better as i unlock more shit and the whole Satan's Acolytes business starts paying off.
 

major_chaos

Ruining videogames
Feb 3, 2011
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Credit where credit is due, I didn't think they could actuly make a worse game than the first LoS but somehow they managed. Seriously? forced stealth sections? Who the fuck thought this was a good idea? My only how is that this shit bombs and Konami either goes back to making good Castlevania games or just lets the series die with a shred of dignity left.
 

DarkhoIlow

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Dec 31, 2009
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I've been playing ti for a couple of hours and I'm quite enjoying it actually.

Even with the quite troublesome stealth sections it's still a good game. If you enjoyed LoS1 I recommend it.
 

Baron Tanks

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Mar 3, 2013
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I, I, I... I am actually very disappointed. I enjoyed the first, but it's length and endless repetition did tarnish the overall experience in the end. I was sincerely hoping that LoS2 would be to LoS1 what AC2 was to AC1. Keep what works, refine what doesn't and dramatically improve the pacing.

In stead, we got this... Oh well, I'm just glad I hardly pre-order anymore and didn't do it for this one... Lets hope The Stick of Truth lives up to expectations cause it's the only other new thing I'm looking forward to in the coming months...
 

FoolKiller

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Feb 8, 2008
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Trishbot said:
And Konami's move towards being solely a Metal Gear factory takes another step forward.

Castlevania looks to join the ranks of Silent Hill, it seems.
Especially since the first game was fun and interesting. This one just has cutscene after cutscene. I'm so fucking bored of watching the game. And the mechanics are worse than the first one. The climbing is weak, the fighting is annoying because you can't really block. If you don't get the perfect block, they still seem to hit you. Also, there is no combo count/system which I'm okay with but while I'm wailing 3 or 4 hits on a guy, how come he can just smack me. There is NO FLOW in the combat.

Oh... and there's no way to quit. You just exit the game to the dashboard/xmb.
 

MysticSlayer

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Apr 14, 2013
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Sounds like most of the problems presented about this game in the review center on the same criticisms the first game had: lack of originality, horrible writing, mediocre pacing, and excessive padding. I still enjoyed the first game a lot regardless of those problems, so I'll probably pick this one up regardless of some of the negative criticism. I don't expect it to set a new standard for action games, but it sounds like a decent action game none-the-less, at least based around what else I've seen/read on it.
 

Alarien

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Feb 9, 2010
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margibso said:
Reading this makes me want to play a game based on Hellsing. None of this brooding anti-hero, instead barely constrained KILL ALL THE THINGS.
If someone could do this right...

I would pay a lot of money for it.

Hellsing is the perfect version of a real anti-hero. Not brooding, not whiny. Basically a complete psychopath who will trouce everything in this path, but sometimes has a good goal in the end.

Heck, I'd like a new and good Kain game.
 

Slegiar Dryke

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Dec 10, 2013
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I'm just going to paint a target on myself here, but personally I think the Lords of shadow games are some of the best castlevanias in years, this one included. To give some perspective, I started out originally with Super Castlevania, and then went backwards to play a few of the older 2D's on the gameboy. I never played Symphony of the night and thus years later when I did try some of the clones of it, I could admit they were fun...but not the bee's knees. in fact my next encounter was Curse of Darkness on the ps2. and this is where my perspective comes from.

There have been a few times in the past years that I've seen games that looked like they could have been good...if they weren't the game they were. other m is a good example. the gameplay? steller.....for another franchise, like megaman or something perhaps. I've heard so many people berate the Lords of Shadow series for "Ripping off God of war", another series I will admit to not having played.....seen a lot of it though....and I argue, that from my perspective, it seems more like god of war ripped off the perfect combat mechanics for a 3D castlevania, before Lords of shadow was even a thought. The first game, was a bit too linear I will say, but in 2, the way they made things interconnected and teleportation accessible....it feels like a good blend of Curse of darkness and Lords of shadow. and considering the stories in both are partway interesting, and partway a bit kooky, I think that works out pretty well.

I don't get why some people say they should have left out the story. I think Lords of shadow does for me what Skyward sword did for zelda. It makes you care about the main character, gives you an origin story.....out of many, true, but still.

I'm pretty much rambling now, but yeah, point said, I enjoy the LOS series for the story, for 3D gameplay that I personally find fun, and I think Jim and many others are rather a bit too harsh on a game of a series thats over 25 years old now. maybe I'm too nostalgic, but if so, that's just my opinion.
 

ExtraDebit

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Jul 16, 2011
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For people that played the demo and think it's fun, just wait until you buy the real game and being forced to do the horribly designed stealth and platforming.

It's like putting shit on top of ice cream, you may occasionally still get a hint of sweetness but you wouldn't be able to ignore the stink.