The Evil Dead franchise at one time became a truly cult one, gathering millions of fans around it. In this universe, there are three parts of films that have been released since 81, a more recent movie from 2013, a whole series and even a game where you need to run after Ash and destroy the sinister ones with a chainsaw.
On May 13, Boss Team Games and Saber Interactive studios released a multiplayer survival horror game called Evil Dead: The Game, which will be discussed in our review.
Plot and references
It’s worth starting with the fact that the game does not have a full-fledged storyline campaign where you could “stick” for 20 hours, but there are missions that refer to various events in films and the series that can cause nostalgia among fans. For example, in the first mission, we play as a young Ash, who is in a house in which a demon is trying to escape from a basement locked with chains and screaming familiar quotes – this moment refers to the very first part of the Evil Dead movie, released back in 1981.
Now there are only five missions, where the player meets some of the characters and encounters various situations, one way or another related to the universe. To be honest, one of these tasks turned out to be too long and sometimes even annoying. There you need to run after the canisters, which are located almost at different ends of the location and try not to catch the eye of the demons. The situation is aggravated by the fact that after the failure it is necessary to start over, so if you spent half an hour on the passage and made a fatal mistake, you will have to go through this whole path again.
You might be asking, why go through them at all, other than to get a portion of flashbacks? The answer is simple! The game motivates the passage of rewards, namely the receipt of survivors, skins and stories. So sooner or later, you yourself will want to close them in order to get well-deserved prizes.
Unlike most projects in the “survivors vs. killers” format, Evil Dead: The Game offers a truly dynamic gameplay. Many compare the game to Friday the 13th: The Game, since there is also a large map, with many buildings, and there is also a confrontation between evil and good. But if in “Friday” you need to run away (even if it’s difficult, but you can kill a maniac), then in “Sinister” you need to expel the demon from the location. It turns out a sort of aggressive survivors who themselves want to destroy the enemy, and not just repair the generators, as in Dead by Daylight. Perhaps someone will remember such projects as Resident Evil Resistance or Last Year – they are much closer in gameplay than more popular representatives.
To begin with, it is worth talking about what the player will do, each time entering the match for Surve. First of all, all heroes start looking for loot, whether it be melee or firearms, matches for making a fire, ammo, cans of Shemps for healing, and amulets for replenishing armor. By the way, there are plenty of weapons here and they are divided into different qualities: from ordinary to legendary. It can be shotguns, rifles, pistols, knives, axes, and so on and so forth.
Next, you need to collect a map, three parts of which are scattered across different zones, after which the survivors go to capture the pages of the necromancer’s book and the dagger for exile. By the way, the locations themselves turned out to be very impressive in size, so sometimes you have to use a car, sacrificing the fact that the demon learns about your position. In the last stages, players will have to kill three necromancers and protect the book that drives the demon from the location. But, of course, doing all this is sometimes not easy, because the killer will not leave you alone and will not let you exorcise so easily (more on this in the section on demons). And here are the top 3 important notes on the fear that will constantly accumulate in the characters:
- With the help of matches, you can activate a fire and lamps that quickly reduce the level of accumulated fear.
- You can stand near static lights (that don’t need to be lit) to lower the fear bar, but it will “leave” very slowly.
- Characters will receive much less fear when they are near players than when walking alone.
The game for the survivors turned out to be quite dynamic. In addition to the main tasks, there are constantly battles on the way that simply do not let you get bored. There are also annoying factors, like bugs. For example, when finishing off an enemy while standing against a wall, it is likely that you will get stuck in it and if there is no car nearby, you will not be able to get out. Also, sometimes the most ordinary jump is not enough. Yes, the character can get over small fences with the help of the interaction button, but out of habit you will often “stumble” on all sorts of small ledges and stones. If the developers had added a jump, then the game for the survivor would have become much more comfortable. In fairness, you quickly get used to it and you simply don’t have an idea to try to climb any ledge.
I also want to note the strength of the survivors. The right combination from a pumped group can cause problems even for the most experienced demon. But a very important aspect is teamwork. Playing against a strong opponent without voice communication is almost equal to defeat, because interaction with each other is very important in Evil Dead: The Game. For example: Cheryl can heal not only with her skill, but also by drinking a can of cola next to her comrades, and is also able to restore armor in the same way with the help of an amulet when Ash exorcises a demon from her comrades so that he does not harm the team and so on. There are many options and all of them can be effective.
Oddly enough, the main task of the demon is to turn survivors into non-survivors, and for this you need to build up strength throughout the match. From the very start, the demon collects special red orbs and sets traps, gaining experience and increasing its level. With each up, points appear that can be distributed to both passive and active skills: traps, simple and elite portals, summoning the boss, and more.
In addition to simply spawning demons in front of the survivors, you need to wrap them in fear, with the help of a skill, possess demons and attack opponents manually or even one of the heroes in order to inflict damage on party members or simply empty the clip. But the most important thing is the ability to control the boss, since this is the strongest unit of all that a demon can summon. He has different skills and is able to withstand more damage than normal henchmen. You need to use it wisely, because if you just break into the crowd, trying to call the whole group, in about 10-15 seconds the boss will be defeated.
It is worthwhile to pre-set more traps near the key point, wrap fear in every survivor, create an entire army of demons and break in with the boss. But what happens if he is killed? Nothing! Gather your strength and continue to attack again and again in order to complete what you started. In our experience, the superiority of the survivors to the last stage is far from a sign of their victory. A large part of the defeats of the Survivors falls precisely on the final stages, where a group of players passes a real test for coherence.
The gameplay for the demons turned out to be really exciting. At first, you seem to be imbued with this atmosphere and feel like a true violent evil.
At the moment, there are three types of demons and thirteen survivors, by the way, among which there are already four replicas of Ash from different parts of the films and the series (fans will definitely appreciate it).
It is worth starting with the fact that the list of characters is divided into classes: leader, warrior, hunter and assistant. Each of them can be developed up to level 25, gaining skill points along the way. These points are spent on passives, which play a big role in surviving against the demon.
As you can see in the picture, the heroes have their own progression and many passive skills – this is where the build phase begins. Whether only meta builds will appear in the game or whether each user will be able to do something interesting and unique, only time will tell. However, at the moment it is quite interesting to test different builds.
If we take the healer Cheryl Williams as an example, then she can be made more versatile: with increased damage, increased armor, and spice it all up with useful skills for allies. Or completely pump into a “clean” support, getting more team bonuses, which is well suited for well-played groups, but definitely not for randoms. The good news is that you can always reset points without any problems and rebuild the hero at your discretion.
It will take a little longer to develop demons than with a survivor, because each of them can be pumped up to level 45. Although at the moment there are only three demons (Henrietta, Eligos and Evil Ash in the form of a necromancer), they are very diverse in battle, therefore players can come up with different battle strategies.
Since the demons have as many as 45 levels, the number of passive skills is much larger than that of the survivors. You can choose builds for any style of play, focusing on certain skills. For example, you can gather in a strengthening army, which will be much thicker, stronger and able to self-heal, which is suitable for attacking in the early stages of the game. Or you can stick to the bosses more, but then your power will be in the later or even the final stage.
Everyone is free to choose what they like and Evil Dead: The Game does not drive the player into rigid limits when it comes to build building.
Graphics and music
If you have watched broadcasts or videos on Evil Dead: The Game, then you yourself have already noticed how good it is graphically: well-developed characters, beautiful environment, various effects and other details. And considering the dynamics of the game, the animations of the characters also look good. I was also pleased that on a PC with relatively old video cards of the 10 series, like NVIDIA 1060, the game feels great at medium settings.
With regards to the musical and sound accompaniment, I would like to pay tribute to the composers and sound engineers. The audio track fully lets you feel the atmosphere, even after more than 30 hours of playing time, that is, it does not bother you at all.
Despite problems with servers and already known bugs, Evil Dead: The Game turned out to be a really worthy competitor to well-known projects of the Survivors vs. Killers format. The developers took advantage of the popular Evil Dead franchise and did not lose face in front of either fans or fans of such representatives of the genre.
Is it worth it for you personally to play it? As always, it’s not for us to decide. But still, if you are a fan of Dead by Daylight, Friday 13: The Game, or even once had hopes for Last Year, then this project can cause a lot of positive emotions. If you managed to play Evil Dead: The Game, then feel free to write your opinion in the comments.