The Darkness didn’t make its way into necessarily everyone’s home back in 2007, but it was one of the titles early one in this generation that caught some attention. In 2011, we now see the Darkness II, and it’s certainly worth more note than the previous title.
The Darkness II features Jackie, a man plagued by demon possession. It’s been two years since the death of his girlfriend, but he’s since learned to cope and keep the Darkness contained. However, things turn when Jackie is attacked, “unprovoked”. A mob war starts in front of him, and he must call upon the Darkness again if he is to survive.
In truth, Jackie is being hunted down by a seedy, unknown group that is trying to kill Jackie. The group is being run by someone referred to as the “Crippled Man”, but further exploration finds that this group is trying to harvest Jackie’s darkness. This group was once good, in fact. They wanted to squelch the Darkness, but were corrupted in the process, merely abusing its powers for their gain.
The demo takes place in a carnival and showcases some amazing lighting and detail. Gone are the murky environments. Everything is clearly defined, and the AI is very intuitive. Jackie loses his connection to the darkness when the lights are on, so enemies will use all sorts of tricks to get him into the light and kill him when he’s weak.
Fighting enemies seems to be more fluid and kinetic this time around. Like in the previous title, the left demon arm picks things up, and the right demon arm attacks. Not only that, but each of Jackie’s arms can tout a gun. This allows the player to pick up a piece of rebar with on demon arm and impale an enemy, whip one across the face with the other demon arm and unload a bullet storm from an uzi and hand gun at another enemy all at the same time!
This may seem like a lot going on, but it’s looks to be a fairly natural playstyle. Plus, players will be rewarded for their creativity by receiving points for impressive kills. These points will translate into upgrades that are exceedingly fresh and interesting. For example, one upgrade transfers the demon energy into the player’s guns, allowing the player to do more damage and not use any ammo. Better yet, when the skill is upgraded, the player can also see and shoot through walls — making shooting galleries much more survivable with a satisfying amount of carnage.
It seems as though the Darkness II is not about rewriting what they already had, but simply refining the experience into something that looks to be more fluid and satisfying. With this may come a larger audience, and it seems as though they may end up being satisfied with their potential purpose. Hopefully, anyway.