Title: Evil Dead: The Game
Developer: Saber Interactive
Publisher: Saber Interactive, Boss Team Games, LLC.
Platforms: PS4, PS5 (Reviewed on), Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, Nintendo Switch, PC
Release Date: May 13th, 2022
Just when you thought that battle royale games were the biggest and brightest star in the sky of online multiplayer, in strolls asymmetrical survival and slaps you hard in the face. You can’t swing a cat in the video game world without hitting a new and improved asymmetrical game, specifically asymmetrical horror. Dead by Daylight reigns supreme in the genre but many have tried to steal the crown and failed *coughFridaythe13thGamecough*. However, there’s a new kid in town and his name is Evil Dead: The Game. Can this game based on a beloved cult franchise take DbD down?
Evil Dead: The Game covers all of the movies and the show that fans love, except for the Evil Dead remake. This game shows no love for that one. We see Ash across the years from college to dad bod Ash, my personal favorite. We also find some of his buddies he met along the way like Annie, Henry the Red, Pablo and Kelly. Bruce Campbell comes back to voice his titular character as do Dana DeLorenzo and Ray Santiago.
You have the choice of playing as a survivor or as the demon horde. If you choose a survivor, you have the choice of one of four classes” Leader, Warrior, Hunter or Support. Each class has its own special abilities and buffs.
The Leader is just that; they lead the team and their special abilities will offer buffs to the rest of the team. The Leader class starts with Annie Knowby but Ash vs. Evil Dead Ash and Arthur from Army of Darkness can be unlocked.
Next is the Warrior class which specializees in close combat melee damage. If you like barn burners, this is the class for you. This is also the class that can utilize Ash’s chainsaw hand. These buffs focus on damage and melee DPS increases. There are immediately three characters available: Ash and Henry the Red from Army of Darkness and Scotty from Evil Dead.
Third up is the Hunter class which focuses its damage in the form of long-range shooting. Melee isn’t the only option for causing death and destruction in Evil Dead: The Game. There are a few guns available from shotguns to rifles, pistols to revolvers and a few specials in between. The special abilities in this class include more ammo capacity, exorcism, stamina usage and increased ranged damage. In this class is Evil Dead 2 Ash, Kell from Ash vs Evil Dead and Ed Getley from Evil Dead. You can also unlock Amanda Fisher.
The final survivor class is my personal favorite: Support. While I started with the Warrior class, I eventually shifted. As you make your way across the map, the more time you spend alone and in darkness, the more fear you build up. When your fear reaches a fever pitch, the demons can possess you. At that point, you lose control and the player or bot playing as the demons can attack your own team. My favorite Support ability is ridding your character and any within your immediate vicinity of all fear. It can come in handy when you are surrounded by deadites or running around in the dark. There are also team health buffs that come in handy when no healing shemp soda is to be found. The characters in this class are the baby-faced Evil Dead Ash, Cheryl Williams and Ash vs Evil Dead Pablo Simon Bolivar.
As a survivor, the goal is to collect the three map pieces that will eventually lead you to the missing pages of the Necronomicon and the Kandarian Dagger. Gather those and you can fight the demons. Once the big red baddies are down, you must protect the Necronomicon so it can be cleansed. If you do, bing bong you’ve won the game.
Word of warning. If you have ANY sort of motion sickness while playing video games DO NOT play Evil Dead: The Game the demon. You will want to throw up after about 10 seconds. Please just trust me…I know from experience. The movement in spirit form is so loose and wobbly to imitate Sam Raimi’s famous camera shots that it can make anyone afflicted want to spew their lunch before they can say “klaatu barada nikto.”
There are three classes to play as the demon: Wardlord, Puppeteer and Necromancer. In all of the random games that I have joined, nearly all were Necromancers and only one player chose Warlord. Necromancer is of course the flashiest option with Evil Ash leading the charge and an army of skeletons, but each class has its own benefits.
The leader of the Warlords is Deadite Henrietta. Now that is a character that made me feel more creeped out than Marguerite from RE7 did in her bug form. In terms of pure creep factor, she takes the cake. Her army consists of your standard Deadite people, which can be a bit confusing when all of the team members are bundled together in a dark area. Just close your eyes, swing and pray. The benefits of the Warlord class are increased damage buffs.
Next up are your Puppeteers. These guys consist of Deadite Berserkers, Eligos and Demi-Eligos. They focus their power on possession and group manipulation. Who needs to attack the survivors when they can get them to attack each other, am I right?
The last group is the popular crowd in school: the Necromancers. Led by Evil Ash and the Skeleton Elite, This class can summon more and more enemies. While the enemies aren’t particularly strong, they are many in number and will mess you up if you get surrounded. There’s also a skelly man that plays the flute and I quite like that.
The maps are random and vary a bit but truly, it’s all so dark that it’s hard to tell one map from the other most times. If you get caught in the dark and your fear level is rising, make sure you have matches at hand to light a fire for a temporary fix. The maps feel large and you do have the ability to drive a car but make no mistake, it sucks. The controls are wild and these cars don’t understand the concept of a straight line.
Much of what happens in asymmetrical survival horror, it can get a little repetitive. Each game has the same objectives, mostly the same enemies. Kill, collect, wash and repeat. Random games are easy to join and the servers are plenty, so the wait time is nearly nonexistent. The pain in the butt comes with adding people to your group. I played on PS5 with a friend. We had a chat party through the PS5 but to play together, I had to send him a party invite manually EVERY SINGLE MATCH we played. I’m not sure I understand the extra steps for each match.
If multiplayer isn’t your bag, there is a solo option available. There are missions that touch on some popular moments in the franchise where you will play Ash, Pablo and Arthur. They aren’t particularly long missions and they conclude with unlockables. While the solo missions are fun, you can tell that the game was made with multiplayer at the focus.
Much like Dead by Daylight (which did have Ash and Evil Dead as a DLC), completing rounds will earn you points you can spend to level up and unlock skills. Each character has their own individual skills, even within the same class. That small change between characters can make a big difference in re-playability.
So, how does the Evil Dead: The Game look? It actually looks pretty great. The Ash character models are spot on. I’ve never seen the visage of Bruce Campbell captured so well. If you are like me, and I’m sure you are, you have a wicked crush on Bruce Campbell old and young and they did a great job at capturing the essence of him in animated form. The little sound bytes during gameplay are fun additions. They never got annoying even when repeated but only because it’s Bruce. The environments look fine. I mean, it’s always so dark and most of what you see are trees. There isn’t all that much to write home about in regards to the environmental graphics but let’s be honest, it’s not what we’re here for anyway.
Is Evil Dead: The Game fun? Sure. It’s just like every other asymmetrical horror game out there except there’s also cross-play. You can play it for a bit and then walk away and not miss it until one day, you get a hankerin’. Plus, it’s always better with a bunch of friends.
You can play Evil Dead: The Game now on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, Nintendo Switch and PC.
Evil Dead: The Game (PS5) Score: 7/10
While there isn’t anything to make Evil Dead: The Game stand out among the other asymmetrical survival horror games, what the game does, it does really well. However, that sameness will get old fairly fast.
A copy of this game was provided to App Trigger for the purpose of this review. All scores are ranked out of 10, with .5 increments. Click here to learn more about our Review Policy.