Beholder 2 takes place in a dystopian society dominated by its totalitarian government. Evan Redgrave followed in his father’s footsteps by going to the Ministry for employment. Although his father was highly revered within the Ministry, Evan starts at the bottom just like everyone else. The mystery surrounding the fall that killed Evan’s father quickly lures the player into the story.

Developed by Warm Lamp Games and published by Alawar Premium, Beholder 2 does its best to continue tempting the player back to the game through shocking events. Imagine walking into work and the first thing that happens is a person is hanged, someone that you least expected to be targeted by the boss. Or as you pass security your new coworkers cheer while someone who failed the security check is beaten by a guard. These are examples of the shocking events that hook some gamers. The gameplay that happens in between breaks the immersion. There is enough frustration in trying to complete dull missions that Beholder 2 is difficult to play continuously.

To solve the enigma behind the Ministry, Evan must start as an entry level employee that processes requests made by the common people. This is not as straightforward as it seems. Choosing the right type of appeal and the correct department to handle it can often be difficult to discern. One might assume that doing an assigned job well is all it takes to be promoted. In the Ministry, Evan also needs to gain reputation. Influencing other employees by wisely choosing friends and doing favors for them is also important. These menial tasks were frequently delivered with little instruction, which resulted in utter confusion as I explored the same three areas and talked to the same five NPCs with no results. Evan can watch television shows to create topics of discussion with other employees at the Prime Ministry and read books to increase various skills. Time is measured, meaning most actions subtract from an allotted amount of time that is given after Evan wakes up.

Beholder 2 would make a great open world game, but the only direction Evan can go is left and right. On the PC, move left with A and right with D. All interaction is accomplished with the mouse. The scenery is often breathtaking and provides depth, offering the perception that there is more to explore. Additionally, the design of the characters, using a glossy black and white, is truly unique and was one of the details that made Beholder 2 appealing. The environment and the people are done well enough to portray the miserable, tortured city with citizens being suffocated by their government. A melancholic piano theme plays in the background and never varies unless a cutscene plays. Beholder 2 might be improved with some experienced voice acting, to give the character’s emotion that would bring them to life. Instead, they are given a tone of voice and speak gibberish that is comparable to Sims.

Beholder 2’s introductory cutscene is incredibly exciting. Realistic lightning flashes followed by impressive roars of thunder. I was thoroughly intrigued to learn what corruption led to this man jumping or being thrown out a window, but the process is grueling. It’s to be understood that Beholder has a substantial fanbase. The story would be great to read as a book or watch in a series, like the official short film made by Nikita Ordynskiy and Liliya Tkach of KINODOM. As a game, Beholder 2 tries and fails to hold any interest for the average gamer.

 

Final Score: 2.5/5

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