But there’s a lot more to it.
There’s a lot to be said about the kind of horror that Japanese-made video games promulgate, and very little of it is bad. Franchises like Silent Hill and Resident Evil put the survival genre on the map years ago with their style of horror, and as per Tango Gameworks, the upcoming The Evil Within 2 takes a lot of cues from Japanese-influenced horror.
When asked in an interview with the PlayStation Blog if there was a specific focus on making a western-themed or Japanese-themed horror game, Tango’s John Johanas said, “Well, we never set out from the beginning and say, ‘hey, let’s make a western-themed horror game.’ I think because the team is obviously mostly Japanese, there is that sense of Japanese horror in there. And I think that really comes out with the enemy design.”
“But some of the locations, we did get a lot of inspiration from some western themed places,” Johanas continued. “Like the stage itself is kind of like an American town. Compared to the first game, compared to the first game which maybe had kind of a European influence, this time we went a little bit in that direction. But there are some things that we haven’t shown which go int a completely different direction.”
Bethesda’s Pete Hines, who was also present during the interview, echoed Johanas’ sentiments, mentioning in specific the enemy designs as well. “I think maybe the most fun part of working with Tango on The Evil Within and now The Evil Within 2 is the team meetings. Every dev that we meet with, the end of it is usually like, ‘hey, we’re going to show you some art, or some screenshots, or some concepts’. And whenever we get to the creatures stuff, the US end of that call is always like, ‘what the hell is wrong with you guys? Who comes up with that? What kind of nightmares do you have?’
“It’s unbelievable,” Hines continued. “They just never tap the well completely dry. There’s always some awful monstrosity that somebody has come up with that is gonna be shambling at you, running at you, screaming at you, whatever it is.”
We feel you, Pete Hines. We feel you.
The Evil Within 2 launches in October this year for the Xbox One, PS4 and PC. Stay tuned for more updates.