- Evil Dead: The Game is an asymmetrical multiplayer horror game based on the Evil Dead franchise.
- Players can team up as survivors or play as the demon hunting Ash and others.
- The game features co-op and PvP combat across various maps like the iconic cabin.
- There is a leveling system, skill trees, 25+ weapons including the boomstick and chainsaw.
- A free-for-all battle royale mode is also included.
The Evil Dead franchise has terrified audiences and inspired legions of loyal fans for over 40 years. With origins in the 1981 cult classic film The Evil Dead directed by Sam Raimi, the series has expanded to include sequels, a TV show, comics, and more. Now in 2022, Evil Dead fans can experience the world of Deadites and demonic forces like never before with the release of Evil Dead: The Game. But what exactly is this new interactive experience and how does it capture the spirit of the Evil Dead universe?
This comprehensive guide will fully explore Evil Dead: The Game, reviewing its key features and gameplay while analyzing how it pays homage to the iconic horror franchise. For both established fans and those newly discovering the world of Evil Dead, this article provides an in-depth look at the characters, settings, combat, and more that define this thrilling multiplayer survival game. By evaluating all that Evil Dead: The Game has to offer, readers will understand why it is a must-play for horror enthusiasts.
With deep dives into the cooperative and competitive modes, progression systems, and faithfulness to the source material, this article leaves no stone unturned. The gruesome combat, haunting locations, and wry humor intrinsic to Evil Dead are all brought to life. For those seeking a definitive take on the video game that Bruce Campbell himself called “the ultimate Evil Dead experience”, this guide delivers all the gory details.
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Overview of Gameplay and Modes
At its core, what type of gameplay does Evil Dead: The Game offer? How does it adapt the cinematic Evil Dead experience into an interactive, multiplayer format?
Asymmetrical and Co-Op Multiplayer
Evil Dead: The Game is an asymmetrical multiplayer game, meaning different players can take on different roles across the two primary factions: survivors or the Kandarian Demon. Up to four players can team up as survivors, taking on the role of iconic characters like Ash Williams or Kelly Maxwell in cooperative gameplay. Together, they must scavenge for supplies, battle demonic enemies, and work to seal the breach between worlds that unleashed the Deadite forces.
On the other side, a single player controls the gruesome Kandarian Demon. This player possesses Deadites across the map to stop the survivors from accomplishing objectives and ultimately consuming their souls. The two sides battle it out in this unique PvPvE (player versus player versus environment) format blending PvP showdowns and PvE survival mechanics. It captures the core dynamic of survivors joining together to fight evil while facing relentless demonic opposition.
Variety of Multiplayer Modes
In addition to the main cooperative and PvPvE gameplay, Evil Dead: The Game incorporates a diversity of multiplayer modes to keep players on their toes:
- PvP Mode – In this player versus player mode, one team plays as survivors and one side controls Elite units of Deadites as they battle to be the last team standing.
- Free-For-All – As the name suggests, this is a battle royale-style free-for-all mode where all players compete solely for themselves to be the final survivor.
- Solo Missions – For those seeking a fully PvE experience, solo missions allow single players to take on AI enemies and explore objectives alone.
- Boss Mode – A unique PvP mode where one player takes the role of a powerful boss character while a team of four survivors tries to defeat them.
This excellent variety caters to both cooperative and competitive horror fans across different playstyles.
Survivors and Playable Characters
At the heart of any Evil Dead experience are the iconic characters audiences have come to love. Which heroes, heroines, and notorious villains make an appearance as survivors in Evil Dead: The Game?
Most notably, Bruce Campbell reprises his legendary role as Ash Williams across multiple eras, letting players control recognizable versions like wise-cracking aging Ash from the Ash vs Evil Dead TV series or his younger Deadite-hunting persona. But Ash isn’t the only beloved hero making a comeback.
Kelly Maxwell, the courageous co-lead of Ash vs Evil Dead, returns as a survivor along with Pablo Simon Bolivar. Cheryl Williams, Ash’s sister who debuted in the original film, is playable for the first time in Evil Dead history. Rounding out the cast are Scotty and Lord Arthur, side characters from the first two Evil Dead films immortalized here as survivors.
Amanda Fisher and New Faces
In addition to these series favorites, Evil Dead: The Game introduces a new protagonist named Amanda Fisher. As an original character, Amanda brings a fresh personality to the fold while still fitting seamlessly into the Evil Dead world in both appearance and hardened willpower.
Several other new survivors help flesh out the options for players to choose from with their own unique strengths and abilities. While staying true to the franchise’s roots, the introduction of new characters like Amanda allows the game to expand the scope of the Evil Dead universe in exciting ways.
Though not playable, Evil Dead: The Game incorporates other major NPC characters from the franchise through narration, cutscenes, or in-game events. Look out for franchise mainstays like Annie Knowby or meet new figures like the mysterious Knowby Family Member. From start to finish, the game delivers an ensemble cast blending old favorites with newcomers.
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The Kandarian Demon and Deadite Enemies
What horrors must players confront as they take on the role of survivors in Evil Dead: The Game? As in the franchise, the demonic Deadites serve as the central threat.
Unleashing the Kandarian Demon
The primary antagonist is the Kandarian Demon itself. This fearsome entity from beyond our mortal realm enters the world, unleashing Deadites and mayhem. A player assuming the role of this demon in PvP and PvPvE gameplay can possess Deadites, set traps, spawn enemies, and directly attack survivors.
The Kandarian Demon grows in power as it collects the souls of defeated survivors, unlocking new abilities from its skill tree over the course of a match. It serves as a constant, terrifying threat stalking players throughout the game.
Shuffling Hordes of Deadites
While the Kandarian Demon is the source, the demonic Deadites themselves remain the most common enemy. These ghoulish undead monsters shuffle across maps in search of prey. While slow-moving alone, they swarm and overwhelm survivors in groups with their pure numbers.
Some Deadites wield melee weapons like knives or axes for added danger. Players will need to keep their distance, dismembering limbs to reduce Deadites to crawling torsos in order to survive the hordes.
Not all demonic entities take humanoid form. Players can also encounter hellish Demon Abominations – physical manifestations of evil conjured by the Kandarian Demon itself. These monstrosities appear in hulking, animalistic forms made of sinew and bone, bringing tremendous size and power against our mortal heroes.
In addition, boss-tier enemies derived from the Evil Dead films add climactic showdowns. Can players band together to defeat the twisting vines of Evil Ash or Henrietta, the grotesque Deadite from Evil Dead 2? Only cooperative teamwork allows survivors to overcome such foes.
Iconic Settings and Maps
What would an Evil Dead game be without its quintessential settings from the franchise? Evil Dead: The Game takes players through recognizable locations they will love revisiting.
Naturally, the notorious cabin in the woods where Ash and friends first opened a portal to demonic forces appears in the game. This location features as a fully explorable survival map, carefully recreated to match its film origins down to the dark basement and ominous woods surrounding it.
Fans can finally return to this cursed place themselves, now beset by Deadites, to gather pages of the Necronomicon missing from within. It captures the isolated dread that made the cabin such an impactful setting originally.
Knowby House and Beyond
In addition to the classic cabin locale, Evil Dead: The Game incorporates other iconic spots like the nearby Knowby House first seen in Evil Dead 2. Locations adapted from the Ash vs Evil Dead TV series also make appearances as maps populated by Deadites.
The diversity of maps pays homage to the breadth of the Evil Dead franchise over its 40+ year history while providing fresh locations for players to explore. From Professor Knowby’s lab to an isolated midwestern town, each map immerses fans deeper into the lore and settings core to Evil Dead.
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Gameplay Mechanics and Progression
Now that we’ve covered characters, enemies, and locations, what core gameplay mechanics define the Evil Dead: The Game experience? How does progression work and how can players upgrade their abilities?
Scavenging and Crafting
In order to defeat Deadites and banish the Kandarian Demon, survivors must gather resources through scavenging items scattered across maps. Players need to constantly search their surroundings for shears, amulets, weapons, health colas, ammo and other supplies vital to survival.
These resources can also be used at workbenches to craft additional ammunition, health items, and weapons. Customizing your gear loadout through careful resource management is key.
As players gain experience over matches, their characters unlock points to invest in skill trees. These trees contain upgrades for stats like health, stamina, damage output, support abilities, and more specialized strengths.
Investing points to customize your survivor builds allows veterans to better carry teams while also giving newcomers room to grow into confident Deadite slayers.
What’s an Evil Dead experience without Ash’s signature boomstick or chainsaw? Evil Dead: The Game features over 25 weapons for mowing down Deadites, many adapted right from the series.
The diversity of options range from melee weapons like shovels, swords, and baseball bats to firearms like pistols, shotguns, rifles, and the Excavator from Army of Darkness. Players can tailor their loadouts between functional and fun options.
Of course, who could forget the Necronomicon itself – players can use its unholy magic against the Deadites, but not without risk. All the iconic and creative weapons fans would expect make an appearance.
Capturing the Spirit of Evil Dead
Through its characters, settings, combat, and other elements, how does Evil Dead: The Game encapsulate the spirit that defines the Evil Dead franchise?
Camp and Horror
First and foremost, the game exudes the unique blend of horror and campy humor that set the films apart. Grotesque Deadites and frightening demonic imagery collide with cheesy one-liners and slapstick gags.
This careful balance elicits screams of terror intermixed with laughs in the face of over-the-top action. Evil Dead: The Game just wouldn’t feel right without its healthy dose of camp amidst the nightmarish scenarios.
Bruce Campbell’s Ash
No Evil Dead experience would feel complete without Bruce Campbell as Ash Williams. Having Campbell voice a variety of Ash iterations alone immediately evokes the essence of the franchise indissolubly tied to his sarcastic, arrogant, yet lovable anti-hero.
Even the game’s original protagonists exude an Ash-like charm, making his inclusion still feel central and spiritually intact even when playing as new characters. Fans couldn’t ask for more authenticity.
References and Details
From parody text in the Knowby Books touting “clichés galore” to the primitive fruit cellar workbenches, Evil Dead: The Game takes pleasure in dense fan service and details. Keeping an eye out for references to all entries across the series timeline makes revisiting this world even more rewarding.
The developers knew exactly what tone to strike and details to include to satisfy hardcore Deadite fanatics. At the same time, it remains accessible for a new generation of players.
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Critical Reception and Review
With its over-the-top action and faithfulness to the beloved multi-decade franchise, how did Evil Dead: The Game fare amongst professional critics?
Overall Positive Reviews
The game received generally positive reviews upon launch. Aggregate sites like Metacritic show an average critic score of 78/100 for the PlayStation 5 version while OpenCritic compiles a consensus of 75% approval.
Many reviewers praised the satisfying gameplay loop, campy humor, and variety of content for movie fans. Critics agreed the game was a fun experience that respected the Evil Dead source material.
Replayability and Polish
The game’s core gameplay proved widely replayable and addictive thanks to the diversity of modes and playable survivors. Reviewers generally felt Evil Dead: The Game had a highly polished feel at launch beyond expectations for licensed tie-in games, with satisfying combat and graphics that captured the franchise’s tone.
Lack of innovation
A common critique was that the game didn’t necessarily innovate substantially within the multiplayer horror genre. Besides the asymmetrical demon mechanic, many felt the game stuck to standard survival horror tropes and mechanics without breaking new ground. Not a dealbreaker, but an area for improvement.
Strong Fan Service
However, nearly every review praised Evil Dead: The Game for its clear affection for fans. Both casual viewers and devoted fans will appreciate the care taken adapting iconic elements into an interactive experience. This focus on fan service above all else makes it a compelling addition for the Evil Dead mythos.
Verdict: A Bloody Good Time
In summary, Evil Dead: The Game accomplishes exactly what fans could hope for – a gory, outrageous multiplayer experience that faithfully adapts the characters, settings, humor, and horror the franchise is beloved for. The variety of modes, playable survivors with unique skills, and menagerie of Deadite enemies provides endless hours of entertaining gameplay.
Smart mechanics like scavenging and skill trees allow players to progress in power across matches while new protagonists like Amanda Fisher expand the lore. The overall polish, stellar voice acting, and respect for series legacy make it a must-play for Evil Dead fans. While unlikely to convert non-fans, the game awards devoted admirers with fan service and survival action aplenty.
For those seeking to fully indulge in all things Evil Dead, this game is the definitive interactive accompaniment to the beloved series. Now excuse me while I grab my boomstick and join my friends to banish some Kandarian Demons – groovy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions about Evil Dead: The Game:
What gameplay perspective and genre is Evil Dead: The Game?
Evil Dead: The Game is a third-person multiplayer survival horror game blending PvP and PvE mechanics. Players can battle each other or team up in tense, action-packed matches across a variety of maps.
How does progression and unlocking new content work?
Through gameplay and gaining experience, players unlock new survivors, abilities, weapons, and cosmetics. This sense of progression will keep players invested across different modes. The skill tree allows veterans to customize their playstyle.
How scary is the game compared to the movies?
Evil Dead: The Game captures the franchise’s blend of horror and dark humor. The grotesque Deadites and jump scares provide frights while Ash’s antics and over-the-top action add levity. Fans agree it echoes the film tone well.
How much content is there at launch?
The base game launched with 25+ weapons, 4 survivors, 5 demons, and 5 maps, providing strong variety. More content like playable characters has been promised through free updates and battle passes.
Is this game only for hardcore Evil Dead fans?
Newcomers can enjoy Evil Dead: The Game too, thanks to its polished gameplay and easy-to-grasp mechanics. No franchise knowledge is required. But longtime fans will especially appreciate all the subtle references.
Does progression carry over between matches?
Yes, players retain all progression related to characters, abilities, etc. Stats track across all modes so you can develop your survivor or demon over many matches.
Is there PvP and does it feel balanced?
Dedicated PvP modes exist and work well. The asymmetrical gameplay between survivors and player-controlled demons creates an inherently balanced dynamic. Skill determines success more than power discrepancy.
How important is communication and teamwork?
Playing cooperatively and communicating vocally has distinct advantages, as the game rewards tightly coordinated teams. That said, solo play remains viable, especially once you unlock more abilities.
Is there crossplay between platforms?
Yes, crossplay between PlayStation, Xbox, Switch, and PC allows anyone to play together. This ensures healthy matchmaking populations across platforms