Review: Hysteria Project 2
Hysteria Project 2 is the Highlander 2 of video game sequels. No, not in the way that everybody turns out to be an alien, but in the way that it does so much to remove all the goodwill the first game instilled in me that it almost cheapens the developer’s previous entry in the series. It isn’t utterly terrible, just bland, forgettable and not at all fun. Disappointing almost covers it.
The first Hysteria Project was a fairly harrowing FMV game featuring you and your friendly neighborhood axe murderer. It didn’t push the genre forwards at all, but it provided a convincing atmosphere and some genuinely tense moments. There weren’t any puzzles to solve, just you, the option to choose which direction to run in, and the odd quick time event. Hysteria Project 2 opens with a badly acted female scientist rabbiting on about something or other, and doesn’t much improve from there. You then have to guide a cursor around the screen clicking on things, and trying not to click the wrong thing. If that sounds vague, then I’ve done my job in explaining the game correctly. For around 5 minutes, the game seems to resemble its predecessor, only with some extra interactivity through the form of monotonous mini games. Lean away from the wall, open the closet door, try to keep your balance while running. It feels like something that should be in a Warioware game blown up to a 3 minute chunk of time, and it’s quite dull indeed.
Of course, whatever atmosphere the first game is thrown out of a window and then forced to dance with broken legs. The killer is back, except this time he’s a bit more ludicrous. I had apparently either forgotten that he could turn in to smoke, or the developers decided they weren’t being supernatural enough. Either way, it’s a good premise ruined utterly. Also, despite having a noticeably higher budget, the game somehow feels cheaply made. Maybe it’s the fact that the voice acting is hilarious. Or perhaps due to the fact that rather than film somebody running down a corridor, the developers instead chose to zoom in on an image really slowly. That actually happens multiple times.
It’s the final mini game that truly exemplifies just how lost Hysteria Project 2 is. It’s a first person run down a hallway filled with lasers, complete with unresponsive controls, incredible grunts from the protagonist, and entirely no tension. It actually doubled the length of the game for me, which is no mean feat. It’s mind numbing gameplay like that that makes Hysteria Project 2 a tragically misguided ramble through wasted potential. More Hysterical than anything.
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes. For more info on our review policy click here. This review is for the PlayStation Portable version of the game.
What I Like:
- Entertaining FMV
- One good puzzle
What I Dislike:
- Utter lack of tension
- Terrible voice acting
- Awful puzzles