For those players who had enough balls to squeeze through to the ending of Condemned, you were probably left with some burning questions and wanting to know more. Luckily, the game did well sales-wise, and so it’s getting a sequel; things look to be getting a lot more physical and hands-on in the very near future. Who cares about busting a bullet in someone’s face when you can take the beating right to their crotchal regions and then finish it off with a dumpster toss? Also, you will learn why the first rule of Hobo Fight Club is that you don’t talk about it, see the second rule for the 1st…
Obviously the thing that the developers really wanted to show everyone was the fighting system, which they said has been completely redone since the first game. Much like the first game, it looks as if traditional firearms will still be around with limited ammo, but it’s much more about the hand-to-hand fisticuffs and using blunt weapons to bash faces in… figuratively speaking, for now.
The fighting is now broken into four different levels. First up are the fists, where you will duke it out, getting your knuckles dirty as you beat the heck out of some guys Rocky-style: just replace boxers with crazed maniacs doing anything to kill you. Punching with your fists is very realistic, and all your hits land with a thud as it sounds in real life, down in the back alleys beating up the hobos for spare change to afford raising video game costs. Up second you’ve got the melee fighting, which is like the first game, where you can stumble upon crowbars, boards, pipes, and other weapons which can be used to give people plastic surgery for cheap. You will be able to wield in your hand many weapons to do some serious damage; this time around, you’ll also be able to throw your weapons from a distance at enemies if you are too scared to go near them (for which we don’t blame you).
Up third is grappling combos, which come in the way of counters and reverses. As described to us, the combos play like a God of War finishing move, such as tapping a button fast to have something happen, or doing a few well-timed finishing moves. Finally, you’ve got the environmental finishing moves, in which you will grab a stunned victim and be able to manually walk them around the environment, until you find something you want to end their life with. You can just snap their neck if nothing tickles your fancy, or you can walk them to a dumpster and throw them in, slam their head on a table, ram them through a window; that’s only but a few of the killing moves we can all expect.
We were shown an example of the forensics areas in the game, which you can expect to see between 15 and 20 of. Some were not satisfied with how they were incorporated in the previous game, so a much better “choose your own adventure” style is in place here, which grades you on how well you solve the solution, and will be paramount if you want to unlock everything and get all the achievements. During these forensic moments, you’ll be given a crime scene, and you’ll then be asked questions about it in a multiple-choice style way. You’ll have to use your brain to look around and consider the evidence, and then answer properly. In the one we were shown, there was a tricky answer where we could say the guy had been dragged to the crime scene, but unless you really analyze and look closely, you’d be wrong, since you can see hand prints that indicate he crawled himself. If you can solve the crime scene with a 100% completion rating, you’ll get rewarded with achievements and also being able to see the video of how it all went down it all its bloody glory… in HD, of course.
As for some random thoughts and figures thrown out, there will also be a Hobo Fight Club, which plays like a survival mode where you choose what enemies you want to fight (you can choose only the ones you’ve met so far in the game), pick your weapon(s), and then face a never-ending stream of that enemy until they finally finish you. You should expect your survival skills in this mode to go onto some leaderboards for bragging rights.
There are 35 upgrades in the game, including two tasers and some other upgrades for other weapons. No longer are doors locked with specific items needed to break them, like a sledgehammer or axe; now, as long as you have one, it will open the door. Instead of just people, you’ll now be able to fight dogs too, Micheal Vick- style, except you won’t get jail time for it or find Jesus after killing all these dogs. You will also be able to get story moments in the game by finding televisions on the fritz and tweaking their antennae in a little mini-game just like in other previous games. Last but not least, you can expect to be killing loads of crazed maniacs and dogs during the Spring of 2008 for both the Xbox 360 and PS3.