Evil Dead: Regeneration

Format: PS2

4 005209 068512
Age Restrictions: 15+
30 September 2005

Ash finds himself arrested, convicted of murder, and sentenced to an institute for the criminally insane. Deep in the basement of the asylum, the mad Dr. Vingo combines technology with
The Book of the Dead to fulfil perverted experiments of his very own. Hell-bent on using science to harness The Book of the Dead's powers, the malevolent doctor unleashes an all-powerful Evil on the world - creating a new breed of Deadites, monsters and experiments gone wrong, twisting reality into a hellish strudel and leaving mankind with that not-so-fresh apocalyptic feeling. It's just too bad for Vingo that the judge gave Ash a straightjacket instead of the needle.

Evil Dead: Regeneration explores a "what if..." continuation from Evil Dead 2, one of the most unhinged films from famed director Sam Raimi. Voiced by Bruce Campbell, players control Ash, the reluctant hero of the series, as they're thrown into a masquerade of evil events, equipped with the latest in prosthetic fashion.

The game follows Ash, the lone survivor of a group that was attempting to discover the Necronomicon - the wholly evil book of the dead. Thought to have murdered his companions, Ash is arrested, convicted of the crime, and sentenced to Sunny Meadows, an institute for the criminally insane, but not for long.

You start the game in the mental asylum minus a hand. Your main weapons, when you find them, are a chainsaw and shotgun (although as you progress through the levels you'll be able to pick up additional weapons including a harpoon gun, flame-thrower, pistol and bomb-lance).

Once you've progressed a little into the game, your old midget buddy Sam turns up to lend a helping hand. Though, to be honest, if you aren't an Evil Dead fan you'll probably spent five minutes trying to kill Sam. The rest of the game sees you being able to control Ash and Sam at different times in the game, in order for you both to progress through the levels.

The biggest two problems with this game were the repetitive nature of the gameplay and the fact that you are not really free to explore your surroundings. When traversing the asylum (and this also rings true for the later levels) there is only ever one path to take. In a room of many doors, all are locked apart from one. After a while it becomes pointless trying to look for secret areas - there don't appear to be any. Even the secret extra tokens you can pick up (which unlock elements in the game) are not very well hidden.

The battle sequences are pretty entertaining, but soon become repetitive after a while. Some of the demons can only be killed if you kick Sam at them. Then, as he distracts them, you can go in for the kill.

If you are a fan of the Evil Dead movie franchise, then you'll love this game. The black sense of humour from the films manages, more or less, to make a successful transition to the PS2. This is helped greatly by the vocal talents of the actors from the films, but the cut sequence animation is also extremely comical. In fact, I detected a hint of a Pixar Animation influence in many of the scenes - especially in the mouth movements and exaggerated facial expressions.

While far from being a great game, Regeneration offers enough to keep most gamers entertained for a while.

Pete Boomer

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