If there’s one thing we’ve learnt from watching the Despicable Me or Austin Powers films it’s that the villains can be the most interesting and fun characters, even if they are a little misunderstood. That sums up Evil Genius 2 on the Playstation 5 as well, it’s Interesting and fun, but at times a tad misunderstood.
Evil Genius 2 is a satirical “spy-fi” lair builder, where the object is for players to take control of an Evil Genius set on world domination and help him to build the secret empire that will help them achieve that. All the while fending off the heroes that stand in your way.
There are 4 unique characters to choose from including Red Ivan from Ivania, Emma the Spymaster turned to the dark side, Zalika the egotistical scientist supreme and of course Maximillian Von Klein the stereotypical genius modelled on Blofeld, Dr Evil and Gru.
Each character brings a different play style giving you access to the unique story cutscenes that play out as you explore further into the game.
Likewise, the heroes that attempt to thwart your plans are brilliant parodies of pop culture characters that each have abilities. If they get past the ruse of the casino upstairs and enter your domain via a door marked “Employees Only”, you’ll have some very challenging moments of getting rid of them.
The art style is superb with its cartoonish look it is wonderfully detailed. For example, zooming out gives you an aerial view of everything you control the detail is good here but more of an overview. Zooming in allows you to concentrate on individual happenings, but with details like reflections on the floor and expressions on characters faces. It’s the seamless transition that makes the environment feel alive, knowing that there is a story playing out in areas your arent even concentrated on at that time. A true living environment.
As you play the story you’ll find so many really laugh out loud moments of comedy that are ridiculously brilliant. This is mostly in the crazy experiment designs or bizarre torture chamber inventions. There are so many options here that you’ll be finding new and exciting ways to do away with your enemies or even some minions that are getting out of line. Rest assured there are trick floor traps with shark tanks under them, as there should be.
Experiencing the game on PS5 was challenging at first. Dungeon builders have never been a strong genre for me on consoles. The entire gameplay system lends itself to a keyboard and mouse layout on PC and I would absolutely suggest that if you have the option buy the game on PC rather than console. If you don’t have the option, just know that it will take that little bit extra to get your head around the controls. But once you’ve played for a bit you’ll find it second nature.
Evil Genius 2 is a really strong sequel that has learnt from the mistakes of the original in 2004. The updated graphics combined with some strong voice acting and really funny writing create a game that you can keep going back to for a laugh as much as a challenging strategy experience. The navigation of maps can be more difficult on the console versions at first, but it’s worth getting into for stretching that itch you have for world domination.
Well, what are we up to tonight? Same thing we do every night... Try to take over the WORLD!
Evil Genius 2 is available now on PC as well as Xbox and PlayStation consoles.
This game was reviewed on the PlayStation 5 here and republished with permission