Evil Genius 2: World Domination is Delightfully Hilarious and Nefarious
Evil Genius 2: World Domination is bringing the cult classic series back more beautifully than ever on Steam in 2020.
Evil Genius is a cult classic simulation game with a unique twist; unfortunately, the series has been in an odd situation of the past decade. The first sequel ever planned for the game was canceled when series creators Elixir Studios folded. Rebellion Developments picked up the IP shortly thereafter with the intention to make a full blown sequel, but for years all we got out of Rebellion were some Facebook games with mixed reception from the community. Rebellion promised that Evil Genius 2 was officially in development in 2017 but things once again went quiet soon after.
Apparently, this was just because the announcement was made quite early on in the game’s development and Rebellion has been chipping away at the sequel all this time. Evil Genius 2: World Domination was finally unveiled as the PC Gaming Show kicked off and the simulation game fans of the original know and love looked as great as ever. While that reveal trailer did not include any gameplay, I was able to see Evil Genius 2: World Domination in action behind closed doors at E3 2019. Thankfully, it looks as accurate and beautiful as fans of the original would hope while making various quality of life improvements to the Evil Genius formula in order to make the game as a whole more enjoyable.
The first thing that struck me when seeing Evil Genius 2 in action was how crisp everything looked. The reveal trailer is technically pre-rendered, but it is not too far off from the actual game. Other than one visual inconsistency in the pre-alpha build that the developer lamented about during my presentation, everything within the game looked great in the comic inspired pseudo-Pixar style. Two Point Hospital, Tavern Keeper, and Evil Genius 2: World Domination are all spearheading the return of this kind of simulation game, and thankfully they are all doing so with unique and pretty art styles.
While mum’s the word on many of the playable evil geniuses and henchman in the game still, the two playable masterminds shown off in the demo still exuded the charm one would hope. Maximilian and Red Ivan both return from the first game and are just as cartoonishly evil as one would hope. Their new designs both look great, with Red Ivan’s referencing how “explosive” he was in the first game, and their interactions with minions were nefariously charming. While some would consider this morbid, I couldn’t help but chuckle when Maximilian killed a slacking worker and actually raised the morale of nearby workers in the process. That is only one small, player-induced situation though; I also got a wider view of what managing an evil lair is like.
As was the case in the original Evil Genius, there are two portions to the lair in Evil Genius 2: World Domination: the facade and the actual lair. In my demo, the facade was casino while the lair was as metallic and high tech as the one in the reveal trailer. Whatever the base’s facade is, it needs to look and function believably enough to deter curious minds out. When you are not focusing on building up your facade and base or setting traps, you are attempting to take over the world by completing various objectives scattered throughout the world via your minions.
There are multiple kinds of minions that can focus on things like strength, stealth, and intelligence. In game, each of these will have their respective useful traits, which becomes pivotal in preventing the Forces of Justice from getting in your base. If they do though, it will be up to the traps to do those do-gooders in. Unlike the original, minions can no longer activate traps (thank you), but they will die if an agent activates one when minions are in the impacted area. The main key to traps is to link them together into hard to escape combinations. Like the reveal trailer shows, combining a fan, laser grid, and shark tank is a really good set up to use if you can get the hero in a restricted hallway.
As for other management portions of the game, they all look to be intact with smoother performance and UI than the original. Building looks just as fun as ever, and will probably be just as fun as fulfilling the world domination objectives in Evil Genius 2. Keeping the facade, traps, and lair itself maintained is the major portion of Evil Genius 2: World Domination I saw, and everything seems to be functioning as it should in order to make that fun. If the world domination part of the game holds up, and I’m fairly sure it will, simulation fans and comic book fans are in for a treat. While my preview was hands off, I can’t wait to get my hands on Evil Genius 2: World Domination.
Evil Genius 2: World Domination will releaser for PC in 2020. It will be on Steam when it launches, a point the developers made sure to hit home.