The Evil Within Xbox One

For a game about the dangers of brain invasion, the evil within is not above some mind-Messing own. 

Implementation of the classic tune Clair de lune when your hero reaches a save point creates a Pavlovian response. Tinkling ivories means security in a world to kill you. No tinkling ivories? Better try to keep your organs inside your body a little more. Eventually the mind plays tricks: think hearing the first bars in the wind; Turns out it's the jingle restrictions brandishing a chainsaw maniac.

This is not a new trick Shinji Mikami - think typewriters rooms soothing Resident Evil - but walking through a dark unknown. Mikami graduates from fearsome reptile ghost to a suffocating oppression house. A deep darkness makes it hard to see more than a few meters ahead. The flashlight on the belt often blind to their lens flare or glare makes you look wobbly nonexistent monsters in shadows. Even the aspect ratio is against you; thick black bars 2.35: 1 violate sight like a roof that descends into one of the many deadly traps of the game.

The Evil Within Xbox One

Of course, this is survival horror developers pushing their luck, seeing how much he can not prevent inciting hatred. The Evil Within really going for it. How's this for an opening tutorial: a policeman, and limping unarmed, against a demonic butcher. Few games have the guts to carry it out and even fewer have the gut-rendering technology to make your attacks macabre justice. You learn and learn fast: to distract throwing bottles hidden in the cupboards and use of meters painfully short sprint Sebastian Castellanos' to your advantage.

It is interesting to play this so soon after Alien: Isolation. That predator game AI was a reaction to the more linear horror Japan. No room for both approaches in the world. The exhaust is much cleaner in Evil Within - break line of sight and hop in a closet and you're safe - but can still create extreme panic as you try to escape the unwinnable battles. A prominent sequence looks relatively easy fetch quests randomly interrupted by a man who can not be killed and can kill with a touch. It was frightening in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, and is scary here.

Fleeing from attackers is only a small part of the game. Most played as the sequel Resident Evil 4 that we never had. Survive the first stressful time and you get a gun, and some demonic ghost town hicks. Aim the sights in the first head you see, pull the trigger and the resulting silencer - think someone throwing a brick into a watermelon - it's enough to say that the teacher is back. With so little ammunition, Mikami can do every bullet feels like an event. Nail the perfect shot and waterfalls pump blood on his clothes and drip Castellanos.

The Evil Within Xbox One

Geysers and neck pump higher, so the scope of the action reaches a little further. The sneak Castellanos serving so well in the cowardly can be woven in battle to attract the villagers in their own traps or deliver fatal stab wounds to the head. And the choice of sacrificing the bodies largely fallen enemies to stop standing back up, can be programmed to turn on nearby threats, becoming a potential corpse firebomb. Throw in the arrows 'Agony Bolts' plant explosives or electrical traps and strategic options branch into endless forms of entertainment.

And as Resi 4 is rarely repeated. A level starts with a siege (echoes of sublime moment 4 cottage), moves in challenging sniping against a medieval pitchers harpoons, take a quick detour to stop execution and, twenty minutes - and two dead ogres - later, somehow ends up with a fight against a giant zombie mutt. And this is one hour of 18, many of whom have the same volume of ideas. Not all hours are equal - a parking configuration boss killed us 20 times in a row with cheap viciously attacks - but most are nice.

It has no clear sense of a journey of Resident Evil 4, though. Creeping madness justifies a story that drags our hero between locations on a whim and bombard us with crazy effects trite. Memo to the games industry: broken minds do not begin and end with shaky camera angles and a red filter. Half the time you have no idea what you're actually battling it. To feel so powerless in the grand scheme of things, when the rest of the game is about courageously battling for control from moment to moment seems slightly miscalculated.

It's almost as if the evil within can not reconcile his desire to put through the wringer with Mikami impeccable eye for building a survivor. Being stuck in the gas chamber with an invincible murderer gets the pulse racing, sure, but give us an army of soft heads, you pulpable any day. Not that the former is bad, it's just that the latter is so good, good Resident Evil 4, you can not stop forwarding a bit distracting. As much as Clair de lune triggers a Pavlovian response, these heads do the same: see one, shoot one and know that Shinji Mikami is back.

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