Dishonored 2 is the second installment of a pretty unique action-adventure game with optional stealth elements, supernatural abilities, and first-person shooter mechanics. I am a big fan of the first Dishonored and was ecstatic over the announcement of the continuation of the series. Of course, with this excitement came a high level of expectation of what the game would be, and I can say that it lived up to much of those expectations.
Dishonored 2 starts off in the familiar setting of Dunwall Tower and it’s been a little while since Corvo Attono, the Royal Protector, donned his mask in revenge for the death of his Empress and lover, Jessamine Kaldwin. Emily Kaldwin, the current empress, is having court for the anniversary of her mother’s assassination. During this ceremony, the Duke of Serkonos enters the throne room with soldiers and killer robots and declares that another woman is the rightful empress. Delilah Kaldwin, half-sister of the late empress, appears and orders the death of both Corvo and Emily. Depending on which protagonist you choose to control, one is turned to stone and the other escapes. This begins your bloody path to revenge, your stealthy non-violent approach, and/or everything in between to save your family.
New And Exciting Destinations
One of the most impressive aspects of this game was the creativity involved in the locations. Compared to Dishonored, the locations in this game are far more unique, memorable, and fun. The main continent that this game takes place on is Serkonos. Serkonos is the homeland of Corvo and has not gotten any better since he left. Serkonos, in general, is very similar to the streets of Dunwall that Dishonored players are used to, but the locations you visit within it are very unique.
- Clockwork Mansion – Have you ever wanted a house that rearranges itself to meet your needs? This level has many different configurations that allow access to various areas in the house to accomplish your objectives. It’s a very cool concept for a game level; I’m sure it has been done before, but the designers did a great job with it. In addition, Jindosh invented clockwork soldiers that are formidable and quite lethal.
- Aramis Stilton’s Mansion – This level alone should get some kind of acknowledgment or award for the game. You enter this level in the present and it is a mess! The place is disheveled and its owner is a cracked, broken, insane man. The downfall of this man and his home began one night when he saw something he couldn’t comprehend that drove him insane. Long story short, you are given a device that allows you to view between the past and the present and even TRAVEL TO THE PAST! The part that really blew my mind on this was that anything you did in the past affected the future. This mechanic allowed the character to overcome obstacles that may not have been there in a different time.
You control either Corvo or Emily in a first-person style of gameplay. In one hand you have a sword, and with the other you can use various weapons and abilities.
- Corvo – If you choose to step back into the shoes of the Royal Protector, you’ll be pleased to find that many of the same abilities and items Corvo possessed in Dishonored are carried over to this title, including blink, possession, shadow kill, and summoning rat swarms. This choice is good for people who are looking to play something familiar in a new environment.
- Emily – With a new character comes new abilities, such as creating a clone to distract enemies called doppelganger. The domino ability allows for the linking of physical damage between up to 4 targets! So, say you need to clear a room? Just link the four enemies together and knock one of them out and they all fall like… dominos? Ugh, now I want pizza.
One my favorite aspects of the game is the variety of ways I can complete missions; you can use all these abilities or none of them to accomplish the objective, which is one reason I like the Dishonored series. This leads to another familiar aspect of the game: Your actions have consequences. A mission’s results are measured at the end of every level to determine a chaos rating, which affects what type of future/ending the game will have.
- Low Chaos – This ending can be achieved by using mainly non-lethal methods to complete your objectives, being stealthy, and not killing enemies. This ending would be the what’s considered the most optimistic ending if you’re interested in making everything all bright and sunny for (mostly) everyone in the end.
- High Chaos – This ending is the opposite of stealthy. Play like a madman through the streets, kill enemies as you encounter them, make a lot of noise, and assassinate your targets to achieve a darker outcome for everyone involved.
These different endings, abilities, weapons, and choices allow for quite a few replays. Even as I played through the first time I was overwhelmed with the different paths, loot, and choices to make. You can spend quite a bit of time collecting and exploring to find the way you want the story told.
In conclusion, Dishonored 2 is a game where you can be a stealthy ghost that sneaks through the shadows and neutralizes their targets before vanishing without a trace, a masked killer on a bloody rampage that creates piles of bodies in order to reach their target and cut them down, or anything in between. I personally enjoyed this game, but not as much as the first Dishonored. I believe the reason for this is that you can’t ever truly relive an experience. Dishonored was a great game and this one follows in many of the same footsteps, just going a little larger with more options – which in reality is what a lot of gamers want. More choices, more routes, more variety, and just more of everything that I loved from the first game makes Dishonored 2 a good sequel to the franchise.
- Fresh protagonist
- New abilities
- Creative locations
- Overwhelming number of choices
- Harder than the original