When you hear the statement “Budget Title” you would probably think of it as a total turnoff. The concept of a budget title is for all of us less fortunate people that can’t always afford to shell out $50 for a video game. So companies figure they can take out a story and put a little less into the graphics and presto you have a $20 budget title. Now on the downside they never seem to even be worth the twenty bucks so they never seem to sell very well. Now THQ has teamed up with Vis Entertainment, the developers behind the fun but flawed State of Emergency (another budget title) to try and take the popular Evil Dead movie series and make it into a good budget title.
Evil Dead: Fistful of Boomstick is based upon the movie series and takes the movie license and makes a new adventure out of it. This was a great idea and works out quite nicely to be able to play through a totally new story.
Those of you who have played State of Emergency will immediately notice the similarities between the two, and in fact the two play almost the same. The one thing that Evil Dead does have that State of Emergency didn’t is a story. The story is told through a variety of cut scenes that show up periodically throughout the game. This has got to be one of the more impressive portions of Evil Dead.
The gameplay like mentioned earlier is just like SOE, and that’s not always a good thing. So if you have played SOE you will know that the game is going to have a lot of blood and gore. As with SOE, the game is littered with simple objectives to complete, ranging from finding keys and opening door. As you progress through the game, these objectives don’t change much in terms of their difficulty level and variety, making the action seem repetitive really fast.
Well similar to SOE, Evil Dead is basically just a slaughterhouse. Through the game you will be given a variety of weapons including the pistol, shotgun, and of course the chainsaw. And I was surprisingly having quite a bit of fun for the first thirty minutes or so of the game, while using the chainsaw was great, but it just got repetitive. What surprised me was the additional ability to use spells (didn’t see that one coming). There are a good variety of these spells that actually throw a few curveballs in the game to try to keep things fresh.
The camera like in SOE just kind of hangs up top and starts to become an annoyance in tight quarters. The combat system also doesn’t seem like a very polished fighting system where the aiming becomes basically a guessing game. You point the gun in the right direction and up you are shooting your enemy is basically how it goes.
The controls are actually quite good, as you can hold two weapons at one time the combo’s are not only easy to pull off they look very cool to. For an easy price you also get some very easy controls that won’t take you very long to get a hang of. You do get control of the camera and the ability to auto center but that still isn’t enough to keep the camera out of harms way.
Throughout the cut scenes in the game there is voice acting, and a lot of it. And probably the most impressive part of the game is the voice acting. There are also a lot of single liners through out the gameplay that sound pretty good, although they become repetitive the comments usually will give you a good laugh. The rest of the sound of the game, well more or less doesn’t exist.
Compared to the other games on the PS2, Evil Dead is at the back of the pack. The visuals more look like something you would have seen in the first six months of the PS2’s existence rather then it coming on its later years. Not all is bad, but nothing is really done well enough to give it any praise.
The character models are iffy at best, with a lot of jagged lines, there is nothing very crisp about them. The enemies all seem to look pretty similar without any real detail at all. The environments are probably the worst of the bunch, which end up just looking awfully bland and pale in comparison to other games being put on the shelves these days. The one thing though that was surprisingly and thankfully un-apparent was the absence of slow down, which I would have expected to see in a budget game such as this.
Overall though although the graphics will fail to impress anyone they do ok in the long run to keep the game running in a decent fashion that isn’t to bad for what you’re paying.
In Evil Dead you go around, throw your chainsaw around a bit, shoot a few people with your shotgun and pistol and try to find some missing keys and doors. If this sounds like something that is fun to you then sure you’re going to enjoy Evil Dead. For all the rest of you, and that include me, this game loses its fun factor right out of the case. It just doesn’t have anything new or entertaining to keep me occupied for a long period of time. The gameplay can be interesting but the fighting gets very repetitive which you can only take so much of.
The old saying “you get what you pay for” once again holds true here. For $20 you’re not really making a serious investment, but it is something you might want to think about. Especially fans of the Evil Dead movies will love to see the cut scenes and one-liners throughout the game. For the rest of us I would either recommend renting this one or leaving it alone.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.