REVIEW : Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 (PC)

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REVIEW : Lovecraft's Untold Stories 2 (PC)

REVIEW : Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 (PC)

I love horror and just about anything that has to do with the different mythologies that H.P. Lovecraft developed. I’ve appreciated his works across a variety of various mediums, including books, movies, and video games, and he has a tendency to conjure up some amazing characters and tales. I knew Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2, a cooperative action role-playing game with rogue-like features that scream Lovecraft, was the game for me the moment I first heard about it. Unfortunately, Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 is a muddle that falls short of all expectations, even with its multiple delays and abrupt cancellation of the multiplayer component. The game is so full of technical errors, dubious design decisions, and shoddy mechanics that Lovecraft himself would be embarrassed that such a game was produced in his honour.

REVIEW : Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 (PC)

Let’s start by giving this game some background information. The second instalment of Lovecraft’s Untold Stories is a follow-up to the game that debuted in 2019 and received rave reviews. Given the success of the first film, it’s unfortunate that the sequel’s production was such a complete failure.

Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 does nothing to expose the player to its systems despite marketing itself as an action role-playing game with rogue-like aspects. I had to often refer to the help page in order to figure out how to open the map or check my inventory because there was neither a tutorial nor an understandable in-game UI. I have no idea what the stuff I took out of drawers and chests does because they are not identified as interactive. Lovecraft makes sanity a major topic in his writings, although he never explains how it works. I occasionally lost my sanity and occasionally regained it, but it had no effect on how I played. The tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of dollars worth of coins I painstakingly collected also came to nothing as haphazard shopkeepers peddled expensive goods.

There are a total of six characters to choose from, but you can only play as the detective, professor, or witch at first. These characters are back from the original game, however, they don’t have names or backstories this time. Dr Clawstone is now a balding man in a lab coat, while Detective John Murphy is now a generic white man wearing a fedora. There is no information in the game about how to find or unlock the other characters.

REVIEW : Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 (PC)

To top it all off, Untold Stories 2 completely lacks voice acting, despite the fact that it was present in a few sequences of the original game.

Combat is the major focus of every action roguelike game, therefore it’s not surprising that Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 struggles with it as well. Each character has a unique set of abilities, such as the detective using a twin barrel shotgun and being able to dodge roll or the witch using a magical skull and being able to fly across the map for great distances. Because there is no sprint option in this game, you move quite slowly, which makes it incredibly annoying when waves of opponents swarm over you.

Status effects that cause you to bleed or poison persist far too long and cause far too much damage, especially when healing supplies are expensive. It nearly seems as though the game’s difficulty is entirely manufactured.

I frequently found myself trapped by a group of creatures and had little choice but to perish because my assaults were too slow and I was unable to dodge around the adversaries. Other times, unseen obstacles caused me to become stuck in the centre of the map and I had to restart the game to move forward. Overall, the movement just feels slow and awkward, and neither the weapons nor the skills have any real effect.

REVIEW : Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 (PC)

The witch appears to be clearly superior to the detective because she travels so quickly and can cast spells that deal area of effect harm, therefore the creators need to seriously rebalance the game. The detective needs an additional ten years to evade roll and ten years to reload two shotgun shells.

Even worse, after reaching a certain stage, the game rendered itself entirely unplayable. I felt compelled to investigate beyond a door that wasn’t locked, but there was nowhere to go because all the doors were locked. I came to the conclusion that the game had soft-blocked me after trying several characters, restarting the game, and other feasible solutions.

REVIEW : Lovecraft’s Untold Stories 2 (PC)

At this point, given my negative experiences with pretty much every other part of this game, I wasn’t really surprised by this.

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review-lovecrafts-untold-stories-2-pcBecause Lovecraft's Untold Stories 2 was building on the popularity of the first game, I had very high expectations for it. Not only does it fall short of all of my expectations, but it also regresses significantly from its predecessor and fails to fulfil almost everything it promised. A game that is plagued by technical troubles and flawed gameplay could not be saved despite numerous delays and the removal of the multiplayer component. I advise avoiding this game until the developers have given it a little more attention because it needs more improvement and should not have been launched in this condition.

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