- Title: Condemned 2: Bloodshot
- Platform:Xbox 360
- Publisher: SEGA
- Developer: Monolith
- ESRB Rating: “M” for Mature
- Genre: Horror FPS
- Pros: Great graphics and sound; solid combat; cool story; decent scares
- Cons: Guns aren’t as fun as melee weapons; multiplayer isn’t anything special
- Achievements: Reward you for playing normally. Fairly easy.
Condemned 2 once again places you in the role of Ethan Thomas as he tries to bury the horrors of his past with alcohol and then is mostly unwillingly recruited to assist the SCU to investigate the cause of the city’s crime wave. The story takes all of the twists and turns you expect from a game like this, and provides plenty of scares while raising just as many questions as it answers. The single-player game is great fun all around, though, and worth playing through a couple times. It is kind of short – under 10 hours – but it is well worth playing.
Condemned 2 also offers up some multiplayer modes to keep you playing once the story is over. Deathmatch and team-deathmatch are present, but seem out of place. The only real winner of the extra modes is Crime Scene. One group of players play as meth’d out Influenced who hide evidence in the level while another group plays SCU agents trying to find that evidence. It must be noted that there is a fair bit of lag in the online modes that sours the experience quite a bit. Also, even this close to release, there isn’t much of an online community and given the kind of “meh” multiplayer modes, that likely won’t change.
There are also guns in Condemned 2, but they are one of the weaker parts of the gameplay. The environments you play in just aren’t all that conducive to gunplay. They are generally small and claustrophobic and the enemies are twitchy and hard to hit. The guns are okay, just not as fun as smashing someone’s face in with a pipe.
The other major component of the gameplay is investigating crime scenes. You use tools to follow blood trails and examine bodies to figure out who the victim is and how they died. The game gives you a list of answers for each type of evidence/observation, and you have to pick the right ones in order to figure everything out. It is pretty cool that you actually have to think things through a bit, and the rewards you earn for getting investigations “Perfect” are worth taking the time to get it right.
Condemned 2 is a great looking game from top to bottom. Some of the levels are a bit too dark for our tastes, but what you can see in the beam of your flashlight always looks great. The characters are detailed and well animated, and enemies slice apart and bash in with gruesome detail. Little things like puddles of water, fire, and blood splatters also look surprisingly good.
The sound is just as good as the visuals. The voice acting is solid all around, and the sound effects for each of the different melee weapons are all perfect.
One other thing I want to note that if you are susceptible to motion sickness, Condemned 2 might set you off. I recommend going into the options and slowing down the look speed so your viewpoint doesn’t move around so fast. Also, try ginger pills or Sea Band bracelets while you play. They really do help and are what I did while I played and I didn’t feel any ill effects.