With a genre as inexhaustible as survival against zombies or demons, it’s easy to think that everything has already been invented, but Evil Dead The Game has its say with its offer of asymmetric multiplayer games seasoned with a certain nostalgia 80s B-movie horror movies. Simple, yet addictive and with plenty of references to the saga.
Maybe the movie Evil Dead –Infernal Possession in Spain- is not considered by many to be one of the best films of all time, but there is no denying that it attracts a large legion of fans who now appreciate not only the B-movie genre to which it belongs, but also video games, especially survival horrors. With whom, before the departure of evil dead the game it’s no wonder they were looking forward to it when for the rest it might not be so bad. But far from being a title that only seeks to seduce the faithful of one of Sam Raimi’s first films -and which almost coincides with the premiere of his latest film, Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness-, the last opus of Saber Interactive It’s a game that many more people can love in addition to those familiar with the ”80s classic” and its sequels and spin-offs.
It’s a simple title in approach and mechanics but whose structure and playability are not heavy and it can provide many hours of gameplay and fun for survival horror fans looking for a multiplayer aspect. And I talk about all this in this review of the game developed by the Spanish division of Saber Interactive, a studio that just a few years ago was getting stronger with a first-person action legend’s signaturehow is the veteran Tim Willit, creator of some of Id Software’s greatest hits. Precisely, this great creative told 3DJuegos that Evil Dead The Game is faithful to its way of understanding video games and that he sought “to take a step beyond what has been done with Doom in 2016“. And you will wonder how, considering that it bets on the third person and instead of the FPS style of its previous works. The answer is the pace.
A tribute to the B series, survival-horror and action
The action in Evil Dead has a cadence very similar to what we saw in the revival of DOOM over five years ago: a varied but constant flow of actionspectacular “glory kills” or executions -as necessary of the playability in this game as in the case of the most recent Dooms- and all crowned with a asymmetrical multiplayer experience which is able to offer a wide variety of playable and strategic situations thanks to the characters and demons that we can manage in the games. And as the icing on the cake, set on the stage of one of the most beloved B-movies among movie fans.
The main principle of the game is as follows: we are Ash Williams, or one of the other protagonists of the Infernal Possession saga, and we must explore with three players plus one great cartography to locate the Kandarian dagger and the Necronomicon pages to close the demonic portal that allows Evil to possess people. During matches, They usually last between 20 and 30 minutes.you will have to equip yourself with Shemps soft drinks to replenish your health, amulets to resist blows, “fire brooms” or chainsaws and other weapons to send the Taken to watch over our own comrades and their fear. Because we are not alone, a fifth player makes up the enemy team and their job is to slow us down or make us spend the precious resources we find in the area and stagger us… or kill us outright.
For this he will use portals to summon various types of demons, traps to increase our level of fear and own team members survivors, or controlling some biggest demon to attack us and empower the possessed who will constantly harass us. It’s basically what you’re going to find in all the games you play Evil Dead, but as incredible as it may seem, this simplicity that can seem repetitive does not feel like it at all. The variety of skills -both human and demon- as well as the size of the maps in the game and the randomness of the location of the objectives is a guarantee that each game you play is different from the last.
Every game you play is different from the lastHowever, the replayability goes beyond these factors, because to unlock the full arsenal of skills of each character we will have to play with him or with the demonic variety that we choose throughout the games. When we complete one, regardless of the outcome, we will get points that will help us level up and that we can then invest in unlocking new skills or attributes for the character or demon we played with. To this we must add that during the game, in addition to the huge amount of melee and fire weapons that there are, we can find bottles of pink -Unique concoction typical of the cinematic saga- that will increase our health, damage, fear resistance or other stats until the end of the game. In the case of the demon, because it scares or damages other players will level up which will allow you, among other things, invoke more powerful minions, reduce the cost of their skills, or improve their ability to detection players, since both teams start in random positions and far apart at the start of a match, adding more mystery and randomness to the game.
With which, we understand that Evil Dead is also compared to other greats of the genre like Dead in broad daylight, Friday 13 Is left for dead, even if – as Willits has already assured – he seeks and manages to go further. But the best part of Evil Dead is its pace and ability to try another game. The factors I mentioned before are important, yes, but it’s the visual and playable spectacle of the title that hooks. If before I mentioned the executions as something worth seeing and enjoying in the macabre “dances” we do against the possessed, so are the game’s graphics and sound.
We fully enter into its action thanks to a successful use of lighting and ambient soundThere is a lot of execution possibilities with the different melee weapons found and with an impeccable sound finish; my favorite is for example the shovelwith this ”clank” so satisfying that can be heard every time you land a blow and with great animations, in the blood. The setting is another of the strong points of the game which recreates almost perfectly seen in the various films and the Infernal Possession series, something that is undoubtedly already a guarantee for fans. But those who haven’t seen or don’t know much about the movies will also appreciate what this game offers. A very successful use of lighting and ambient sound allows us to fully enter the game and improve the scares that the demon player can set us with his psychological traps. The most capricious will have a “tremendous” time. Special mention also to the titanic effort provided by the developer and also the publisher -Boss Team Games- to access the rights to the entire Infernal Possession saga -TV series included- to incorporate the elements and ”jokes” typical of the itself, and get much of the original cast -including the mythical Bruce Campbell– replay the characters who have already appeared on the big and small screen.
Unfortunately, the title is not free from flaws. Although from day one Saber Interactive and Willits swore and swore it would be a title to play eminently with other players, they did not want to leave out those who prefer to do it alone. For this purpose there is the possibility of setting up a game in which we are ourselves and 3 other AIs as teammates against the Demon. However, it takes a lot of gracesince the chaos and confusion of messing with people is lost by having teammates follow and protect you without taking the initiative, apart we will not gain experience in this modality. Not only that, but we also can’t play as a demon in “solo” mode, making it impossible to find out what the other team’s game is like but without the other players.
Regarding the missions they have promised, they are only six -in the absence of a seventh outgoing in the form of DLC-, and despite the fact that they are very faithful to the original material which the game drinks, they are no more than a kind of challenges not very attentive and who give us brushstrokes of the story and the characters. Their difficulty makes them exceedingly complicated; we will be alone and there are hardly any healing resources in them, apart from the fact that we have no special abilities. I personally found somewhat frustrating, especially due to the fact that to enjoy the full cast in the rest of the game, we are forced to complete them. Although this is all as they promised, I think they could have done it something better and more complete.
Despite these minor flaws, Evil Dead The Game was presented as a very nice surprise for fans of cooperative multiplayer or asymmetrical variety games, and based on a beloved cult saga. Of course, I highly recommend playing it with friends or in a community of game-focused people; You will enjoy it much more and you will learn it better. Anyway, I can say that Saber Interactive has been up to of what he promised, with his head held high, by offering us this game.