Gaming Horror Recommendations

Video Game Recommendation #7: “The Evil Within”

Perfect for the Halloween season, “The Evil Within” offers up plenty of scares, tension, and gore. To this day, it’s still one of my favorite horror video games, and there are numerous reasons to give it a try.

Why The Evil Within is a Fantastic Survival Horror Video Game

Overview

The Evil Within is a survival horror video game that released on October 14, 2014. It’s available on a variety of platforms, including PC/Steam, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. Additionally, the game was developed by Tango Gameworks, while Bethesda Softworks published it. Perfect for the Halloween season, The Evil Within offers up plenty of scares, tension, and gore. To this day, it’s still one of my favorite horror video games, and there are numerous reasons to give it a try. 

 

Story

The story centers around a detective named Sebastian Castellanos, who works in the fictional setting of Krimson City. Along with his partner, Joseph Oda, Sebastian responds to an urgent call at Beacon Mental Hospital. The detectives enter the building and begin investigating, only to become trapped in a horrific nightmare. Stuck in an ever-changing and hostile world filled with deadly creatures, Sebastian must fight to survive. And to make matters worse, a mysterious, malevolent being named Ruvik, keeps appearing. 

General Info

Ultimately, The Evil Within focuses on classic survival horror; in which resources are limited, and health depletes quickly. Although the main aspect is horror, this is blended with action to create a truly distinct title. In addition, the game was directed by Shinji Mikami, of Resident Evil fame. That influence is prevalent throughout The Evil Within’s 16 hour runtime. Strategy is also a big focus, requiring players to use caution and stealth, rather than brute force alone. Players must be careful about how they approach each enemy.

 

Luckily, this game supplies plenty of weapons, such as a shotgun and a rifle. Unique to The Evil Within, the Agony Crossbow is an incredibly powerful weapon; one that can fire elemental and exploding bolts. Furthermore, players can craft extra bolts for it. However, there are also many obstacles meant to hinder players. Fatal traps litter countless areas, occasionally resulting in instant death. Speaking of immediate death, several enemies can cause that as well, and these monsters are as plentiful as they are terrifying. 

 

Although the adds are often stacked against Sebastian, he does have a few advantages. A substance called green gel, can be harvested from fallen enemies. It’s then used to improve a wide range of Sebastian’s abilities. Additionally, he can execute stealth kills as long as he stays undetected. And when players need to save or upgrade, they can retreat to Sebastian’s “Safe Haven” through special mirrors. 

 

Why I Recommend This Game

Story/Gameplay

There are numerous factors that make The Evil Within a worthwhile horror  game. First, the story is interesting. It kept me intrigued all throughout, and I genuinely found myself wanting to unravel the entire mystery. At times, the story can be a bit vague, but personally, I like that. A lot is left to interpretation, and I think that works for a game like this. It’s supposed to be trippy and terrifying. Not everything is meant to make sense. 

Second, the general gameplay is smooth and works well. It’s also quite stealth based; that element is executed very well. Truly, players have to be cautious in battle. Enemies hit hard and quick, which leads to fast depleting health. This ties into relying more on strategy than recklessness. Personally, I adore this part of the game. It makes The Evil Within a challenging, harrowing experience, and I enjoy a bit of difficulty with my video games. Undoubtedly, the game expects players to use strategy and make smart decisions. I love that it places such trust in players. 

 

Enemy Variety/Design 

Third, there’s a good variety of monsters in this game, and most of them have great designs. A personal favorite of mine is Laura; she looks like a mix between a spider and a creature from the Grudge film series. Plus, she’s covered in blood, and can spawn from it, too. The Keeper, a butcher-like being with a safe as a head, is another fantastic example. 

Weapon Variety/Graphics

In addition, the array of weapons is quite good. They give you a lot to work with, depending on your preferences. In particular, I think the Agony Crossbow is very cool. It heightens the strategic aspect; players have a powerful weapon, but they have to determine how to best use it. Ammo is especially limited for the Crossbow, and it can easily be misused. 

 

Next, the graphics for The Evil Within are beautiful. When it first came out, the graphics were absolutely gorgeous, and they still hold up today. The character models look especially good, detailing small things like rain droplets sticking to skin. The ever-changing environments look great, too, including intricate details. 

 

Sound Design/Atmosphere 

Another positive point, the game has fantastic sound design. As you progress through each area, you can faintly hear monsters groaning in the distance. This lets the player know enemies are nearby, and that they need to be on guard. Ultimately, it ramps up the tension of an already suspenseful video game. 

 

Furthermore, the soundtrack fits well with the game’s overall tone. It also serves to set and maintain an eerie, oppressive atmosphere. Due to the previously mentioned difficulty, every encounter feels important and as if it could lead to death. These factors combine to craft a bleak, creepy, and intense atmosphere; one that never stops being so. 

 

Final Thoughts

The inclusion of many great features makes The Evil Within a truly worthwhile horror game. Not only does it stand out among the survival horror genre, it also shines in the video game industry as a whole. Because of an interesting story, well-executed gameplay, great enemy design/variety, and a suspenseful atmosphere, The Evil Within excels at encompassing horror. And it manages to be a fun, enjoyable experience at the same time. In conclusion, I’d highly recommend this gem of a video game. 

Sources: 

Official Bethesda Press Center- https://press.bethsoft.com/app/login?redirect=%2F

 

Links: 

Official The Evil Within Website- https://theevilwithin.bethesda.net/en-us

 

Official Tango Gameworks Page- https://www.tangogameworks.com/

 

PlayStation 4 Store Page- https://bit.ly/2BRjYYU

 

PlayStation 3 Store Page- https://bit.ly/2ItFd4Q

 

Xbox One Store Page- https://bit.ly/2Ml2KWV

 

Xbox 360 Store Page- https://bit.ly/33dutiW

 

PC/Steam Store Page- https://bit.ly/2QzWqeG

 

Pictures: 

All pictures were obtained from the official Bethesda press center, which I’m registered to use. None of these images belong to me; I just have permission to use them. 

Haley Scully
Contributing Writer
Haley is an introvert and all around nerd who loves anime, video games, collecting figures, horror, and of course, writing. She also has an undying love for animals, with four mischievous kitties of her own.
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