The Darkness II Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC
The Darkness II Box Art
System: PS3, Xbox 360*, PC
Dev: Digital Extremes
Pub: 2K Games
Release: February 7, 2012
Players: 1-4 (Online)
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Blood and Gore, Drug Reference, Intense Violence, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content

There's also the Swarm ability that summons a bunch of hellish insects to temporarily incapacitate your foes, another power that envelopes you in a protective carapace when you're in the dark, and an ability that channels your Darkness powers through your guns, giving them a temporary boost in power. If you really want to be a powerhouse, you can get the abilities that load your guns with explosive ammunition and larger clips.

If I had one major complaint about The Darkness II, it'd be how short its campaign is. It's not difficult to beat it in around six hours. While that might sound a little disappointing compared to its predecessor's much longer runtime, it's really not that bad. If you were to cut out the first game's mundane side missions and mindless wandering around the labyrinthine city and the subway tunnels below it, both games would be about the same length. I don't know about you, but I'd much rather have six incredible hours of gameplay than twelve mediocre hours with a few good parts thrown in.

The Darkness II Screenshot

A major addition to this game is the multiplayer, which has been completely overhauled since the first game. The competitive mode of the original has been replaced by a four-player co-op mode that lets you and some friends jump into the blood-spattered shoes of four Darkness-powered mercenaries. The mode, dubbed Vendettas, has been woven into the main story, and some of the characters from the campaign have roles here as well.

There are four characters you can choose from, and their unique skill trees and Darkness weapons make each of them worth checking out. There's Inugami, a swordsman who has to kill to satiate his cursed katana lest it take his soul; a Scotsman named Jimmy Wilson, who has a (stereotypical) love for the drink and a fondness for splitting skulls with a powerful axe; a voodoo shaman named JP Dummond, who wields a powerful staff; and Shoshanna, who gets up close and personal with her double-barrel shotgun. None of them are particularly relatable characters, but they're all solid, and their unique weapons and skill sets offer some incentive to play through Vendettas more than once. That's a good thing too, because the mode only takes a few hours to complete.

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The Darkness II is everything I wanted a sequel to The Darkness to be. It's almost excessive in its violence, the combat is addicting, the hand-drawn Graphic Noir art style is gorgeous, and underneath it all is a game with a heart and a truly interesting story. Jackie's a supremely messed-up individual, but we still love him because of all the crap he's willing to go through in order to save Jenny. If you're looking for any of these things, The Darkness II won't disappoint.

By
Adam Dodd
Contributing Writer
@BabyColada
Date: February 7, 2012

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.6
Graphics
The animations might not be that believable, but the hand-drawn Graphic Noir art style is consistently gorgeous.
4.8
Control
Quad-Wielding is more than just another cool term; it's also an insanely addicting way to unleash all sorts of pain.
4.6
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music is beautiful, even haunting at times. The voice acting, especially Mike Patton's work as The Darkness, is better than ever.
4.5
Play Value
The campaign might be a little on the short side, but the New Game + option and the cooperative mode add quite a bit of replayability.
4.6
Overall Rating - Must Buy
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Quad-Wielding Chaos: Slash, grab, and throw objects and enemies with the Demon Arms while simultaneously firing two weapons, adding a new dimension to the FPS category.
  • Intense and Personal Journey: Experience a dark, twisted, and gripping story written exclusively for the game by acclaimed comic book author Paul Jenkins, whose credits also include The Incredible Hulk, Wolverine, and the original The Darkness game.
  • Distinctive Graphic-Noir Style: Graphic novel shading and color combined with the dramatic lighting of film noir pays tribute to the source material and brings the pages of the comic series to life.
  • Four-player co-op campaign: Play as one of four unique characters each capable of wielding weapons infused with Darkness powers.

  • Videos / Game Trailers
    The Darkness II - Launch Trailer - click to enlarge
    Launch Trailer
    The Darkness II - Artfully Executed - click to enlarge
    Artfully Executed
    The Darkness II - Playing With Darkness - click to enlarge
    Playing With Darkness
    The Darkness II - E3 2011: Official Preview Trailer - click to enlarge
    E3 2011: Official Preview Trailer
    The Darkness II - Teaser Trailer - click to enlarge
    Teaser Trailer

    Screenshots / Images
    The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge The Darkness II Screenshot - click to enlarge

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