Monday, October 12, 2020

Alone in the Dark 2: This Computer Sickness

With that interlude out of the way its time to talk about Alone in the Dark 2. After Wolfenstein came out Infogrames wanted something more actiony. Whether that lead to the departure of Raynal or he naturally left, I leave up to the reader. Regardless, with a new tone and a new lead its natural that some changes were going to occur. Hopefully one of those changes is autoaim, because actually hitting something with a gun was nigh impossible. Meanwhile, my criticism of the plot as suddenly turning into pirates is going to be no less true here, because the prelude reveals that there's a pirate ship. Good. Just what I needed.
Interestingly, this game was accused of the usual kind of moral degeneration. One "Detective Chief Superintendent" from Yorkshire was the Satan in this particular case. Seeing as this came out the same year as Doom, and later than such gorier titles like Barbarian, Chiller and Mortal Kombat...I don't know. I've never heard about any such gore, but I could be mistaken. But Morpheus, you ask, that's in the UK, they were over-sensitive idiots who might as well have been the publicity agents for the horror genre. Yes, that's true, but maybe they have a point this time. Some of those video nasties were nasty. Let's see if this is nasty...yeah, that's not something that depends on the contents, but anyway!

The surprisingly long intro cutscene details a guy called Striker's journey into a mansion in Hell's Kitchen, California. Where is it? I dunno, California is a big place. Its facing a cliff, so its a slightly smaller area.

We have the time, which places AitD 1 sometime before now. Well, before Halloween this year. Striker here is a pretty athletic guy, vaulting over a hedgewall...

...and nary a support to be seen. He's running and he's not kidding around, he's got a gun. The guard here clearly isn't human.

I suspect when I walk through here that statue is going to screw with me, but for now its inanimate. Striker is walking around to the side, for some reason. Why's he doing that, is there a tripwire?
He's climbing around? Something tells me unless these zombies are spectacularly dumb, he's going to get spotted. One false move in his Tomb Raidering and he's gonna break his next too.

Jumping across a gap? Don't tell me I'm going to have to do that.

This works if the guy you're cutting to has a face. This just looks like a monster.

Glad to see this guy's human. If Striker is so awesome, why the hell is this a game? I'm sure everyone heard him with how loud he jumped in.

Then it cuts to a woman, heretoafter referred to as this chick. This chick cackles, non-audibly. There's been no audio so far. I wonder if that's my fault.
Striker approaches Grace, and as he's doing that, each time he looks away from the Joker doll here, he approaches. Striker might be strong and tough, but he's a smart as a bag of bricks.
Okay, still disturbing, but resembles a normal human face. Why is Striker's face so messed up?
Again, why is this Joker doll's face so good, but Striker doesn't even have eyes? Anyway, he gets strangled and then this happens...
I question the need to show this. I also question the graphical artists ability to do water, looks a little too white. I'm starting to think that Yorkish Dick had a point.
The Joker doll disappears and then this chick shows up. Dunno what the point of this was.
Oh, right, this is the intro to a video game. Hell's Kitchen is cursed. I assume Striker mentioned where this Hell's Kitchen is, otherwise Carnby is going to be strutting around in Manhattan. Alone in Manhattan doesn't have the same ring to it, and I'm pretty sure some small indie film studio would sue over that title. Then there's the credits. Man, I've written a lot of words for a game I haven't played yet. The credits happen after this, no real skipping. That's going to be fun starting this up again.
Okay, what wonderful puzzle will we start off with? I'm going to have to do something to get inside. I don't know if I can trick the zombie guard. Its fairly obvious isn't it? Who wears green full-face makeup on Christmas? This is attached to a main road too, assuming I wasn't just driven here by the corpse from the end of the last game.
Carnby, where are you going? Carnby? You're stealing my act, I'm supposed to be the coward.
The next time you do something and feel unappreciated, just remember, someone designed a series of beautiful frames for this explosion. An act that occurs in the span of a second. Let's recap for a second, The sequel to the carefully paced survival horror game starts with me blowing up a door, alerting anyone with a brain to my presence. I guess this really is going for action game.
The game properly begins, and if you guessed that the zombie isn't dead and is about to get right up, you'd be right. So I start beating the crap out of him. Carnby has, what I assume is a new attack, headbutting. In short order I dispose of him and get his stuff. A Thompson SMG, a flask and a "loading-clip", I.E., Thompson drum magazine. Hopefully that's the full drum, because some ten odd bullets in a rapid-fire gun is a sneeze. I also already had a revolver, a nice change from the last game. Now, freedom to do as I please. I wonder what's on the street.
I have a car? The tell-tale sound of gunshots occur.
How nice of them to bury me at sea. I guess I better handle this game properly now. Unfortunately, it seems that the game has gotten considerably less adventure-y. The only actions I have by default are fight and push. No entering that door for me. No climbing anything. Hopefully its just a brief issue in this area and nothing more.
A gunfight. This goes badly. I shoot at one of the guys, I manage to down him. Barely. Carnby sounds more like he's a character in a Victorian drama than someone facing zombies. Saying "Its awful...its awful..." as his bodymass contains significantly more lead than someone in his age range should have. I can see I'm not going to be taking advantage of that .38 any time soon. I try it a few more times. There are four enemies here, that I can see. I'm not just missing something am I? Also, I haven't heard any music yet, I think I screwed up playing the CD audio again.
Eventually, I manage to kill them. Somehow, someway. I'm now out of ammo. Except for the revolver. I check around, there's a floor plate, it does nothing. I can't climb up the stairs...for some reason. There's a gate blocked by a zombie, can't push my way out of there. I don't want to go into the garden yet, although I suppose I should. I check the plate again, and this happens. I don't understand.
I teleport somewhere else, I lose my weapons and mysteriously gain some items. What? What? This is more confusing than Galactic Empire. Nope, nope, done now, we'll pick this back up when I have the audio issue fixed.

This Session: 1 hour

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