The Evil Within: The Executioner DLC Review
The final episode of The Evil Within DLC is upon us, and they surely saved the biggest departure from the main game for last. In “The Executioner”, players are liberated from the weak humans to take control of the monolithic, hulking “Keeper” monster in first person perspective. While it feels more like a secret mode or collection of mini games than a full fledged DLC installment, “The Executioner” provides enough fun and cathartic release from the main game that The Evil Within fans will love the change of pace.
In “The Executioner”, The Agency has told your character that your daughter is trapped in STEM, and is running for her life from the various monstrosities that reside there. To save her, you are hooked up into STEM and your avatar of choice is the “Keeper”. Throughout the game’s short campaign, you will crush, kill and maim your way through the Ruvik mansion looking for clues to find your daughter. The game’s simple exposition is a welcome change as the very high concept, somewhat confusing story of the main game sometimes caused you to question your own character’s motivation and mission. In “The Executioner”, you have one mission: find your daughter and kill everything in your path.
It’s not just the story and character that is a big departure from the main game. While every installment of The Evil Within has been played in a third person perspective, “The Executioner” shifts into first person. That’s not the only graphical change as I immediately realized the damned black “widescreen” bars that have plagued this game since day 1 are finally gone! Just this simple change alone was enough to give me relief from one of my biggest gripes with the game until this point. The rest of the visuals are the same as what you’ve seen up until this point; as all enemies and environments are recycled into this from the main game, but the shift to first person makes it all feel fresh.
The gameplay is best described as boss battle gauntlet. You’ll navigate the familiar Ruvik mansion, battling a few standalone monsters along the way to the next boss battle. You’ll fight a familiar assortment of bosses such as the Sadist, Joseph, and Sebastian himself as you progress your way through the game. Killing enemies and bosses unlocks coins that can be spent to upgrade your character. The usual upgrades are here – health, defense, attack power, etc – but the opportunity to unlock the weapons used by the game’s various bosses helps change the combat mechanics enough to keep them from becoming completely monotonous. Running around with a chainsaw, molotov cocktails, and a rocket launcher go a long to keeping the excitement up.
For The Evil Within fans, it’s a truly cathartic experience to crush, maim, and chop to pieces all the monsters and bosses you ran in fear from as Sebastian and Kidman. While the short game length and overly simple presentation may feel lacking when compared to the high production values of “The Assignment” and “The Consequence”, “The Executioner” is a fun and unexpected romp through the familiar game world that ends this well executed DLC collection on a high note.