Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Evil Dead: The Game Cover Story – Raising Hell

Saber Interactive and Boss Team Games are targeting the asymmetrical horror genre for a battle between demons and survivors, but it’s quite different than other creature feature forays on the market. In Evil Dead: The Game, don’t expect to find the human heroes cowering in corners or attempting to flee – this 4v1 fear festival takes the fight directly to the forces of evil, hacking enemies in half and blowing them to pieces. In 1981, Sam Raimi’s The Evil Dead made a grisly splash onto the horror scene, featuring what’s become an almost formulaic setup: Five unfortunate friends head out to a cabin in the woods for a good time, and then, spoiler alert, good times are not had. The idyllic journey into the country turns into a bloody massacre, spurred on by an ancient evil book known as the Necronomicon. I remember I first saw the movie in a time when villains like Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, and Michael Myers fought for dominance over our grade-school nightmares. The film offered the terrifying simplicity of facing your friends after they become possessed undead. It gloried in the sheer, unflinching willingness to lean into the intimate, grim goriness of it all, and the experience left a strong impression. Interestingly enough, it’s possible that The Evil Dead wouldn’t have had the chance to thrive without horror maestro Stephen King’s praise. After seeing it out of competition at the 1982 Cannes Film Festival, King wrote a rave review, leading to New Line Cinema picking the film up for distribution. The movie has gone down as a cult classic and had plenty of influence within the horrorsphere. But Bruce Campell’s portrayal of character Ash Williams has undeniably become the campy, comical face of the otherwise incredibly macabre franchise, infusing the gruesome themes and blood splatters with a hefty dose of comedic quips and one-liners. Multiple films followed the original, including Evil Dead 2 and the completely off-the-wall Army of Darkness, where Ash travels back to medieval times to fight the titular demonic forces. In more modern times, the series has had both a soft reboot and a TV series, with yet another film, Evil Dead Rise, scheduled to hit this year. And then, of course, there’s Saber Interactive’s upcoming game. Read more...
More

    Latest Posts

    Dirt 5 Xbox Series X Preview – An Impressive, Muddy Showcase

    With the new generation a month away, I finally got my hands on a true next-gen title after putting the new Xbox Series X through the paces with backwards compatible games. Dirt 5 is a visual treat; mud flings into the air as you throw on your handbreak to cut around a corner as the sun slices through deep blue sky in blinding fashion. The visual leap forward is noticeable, but I was most impressed by how smooth everything feels.

    Dirt 5 capitalizes on the speed emphasis of the Xbox Series X, loading detailed environments with several cars in just under 15 seconds; just as I was blown away by how fast the Series X can load an Xbox One game, I’m impressed by how short I have to wait once I enter an event. Speaking of events, Dirt 5 gives you multiple ways to experience a diverse offering of races, ranging from the choose-you-path career mode (complete with playful narration by Nolan North, and a mentor played by Troy Baker), and the other-the-top and creative Playgrounds.

    Dirt 5

    Career mode gets you into the action faster than I anticipated. After a short explanation of how the mode works, I’m immediately thrusted into my first Ultra Cross race (a combination of off-road and street racing) on a muddy Norwegian cliffside with waves crashing by the barriers. The better you do in each career race, the more XP, money, rep, and rewards you take home. While money is obviously used to buy new cars and upgrades, rep gives you additional sponsorship opportunities (which in-turn give you even more money) and XP levels up your profile, granting you access to more cosmetics to equip on your cars and profile.

    After taking first place in that initial event in Norway, I’m given a choice to proceed to either a Rally Raid event (the quintessential point-A-to-point-B Dirt experience) in Greece or a Land Rush event (a true battle against the elements) in China. After completing my third event, a hilly Stampede race capped off by a massive jump in Italy, I’m finally able to afford a new car; I opt for the Ford Fiesta R5 MK II. 

    Dirt 5

    I spent a bit more time in career before heading over to Playgrounds, an all-new mode that not only lets you race in creative and outlandish courses, but also create them for yourself and share them with the world. Hopping into the Discover section of Playgrounds, I’m greeted with a treasure trove of creations from other players. From a checkpoint-based course full of jumps, tight turns, and even an upward spiral to a complex skill-based track centered on smashing targets while avoiding hazards, I encountered all kinds of ways to put my driving skills to the test. On top of finding plenty of enjoyable courses like these, my competitive streak was also satisfied, as each event has a leaderboard built in, encouraging you to play again and again to top other racers.

    Once I dug into the creation tools for myself, I was easily able to craft a stunt course with a jump through a flaming hoop, a pipe to drive through (upside-down if you want), and a sharp U-turn to drift around. Thanks to pieces that snap together, it didn’t take long before the ideas in my head were brought to life on the screen. I’m excited to see what I can whip up once the final version hits and I devote more time to learning the ins and outs of the components available.

    Dirt 5

    Dirt 5 isn’t a title that’s impossible to achieve on current-gen technology, but the experience on Xbox Series X is smooth as silk. I haven’t had a chance to check out the title’s performance on PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, but I continue to be pleased with the efficiency of the Xbox Series X, even on next-gen titles such as this.

    Dirt 5 launches on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC this November. It arrives on Stadia sometime next year.

    Latest Posts

    Don't Miss

    Get notified on updates    OK No thanks